I’m not sure what everyone else is reading, but lately I have been addicted to my “Educational Leadership” magazine. This is ASCD’s flagship publication and I highly recommend it. Currently, I’m reading an archived issue, ‘Reading-The Core Skill’. (You can purchase these for approximately $8-$14.)
As some of you know, I am teaching summer school and working with teacher candidates, a.k.a. student teachers. I have had the pressure-I mean the privilege!- of sharing everything I can in regards to literacy in 5 weeks. Gulp.
As if the stars were in alignment, I just happen to have finished Richard Allington and Rachael Gabriel’s phenomenal article, “Every Child, Every Day”. This article highlights the six elements of effective reading instruction that do not require much time or money. Please take the time to read the article linked above, but for this post’s sake, I’ll post the six elements of instruction that every child should experience every day.
- Every child reads something he or she chooses.
- Every child reads accurately.
- Every child reads something he or she understands.
- Every child writes about something personally meaningful.
- Every child talks with peers about reading and writing.
- Every child listens to a fluent adult read aloud.
Let’s take some time to focus on element #1. How can teachers consistently make this happen in their classroom? Is it possible? Is there time? The answer is yes. It can happen and it must happen. But we all know the realities of the classroom, and the struggle is real–assemblies, fire drills, sick days, students taking longer than expected on a unit, and the list goes on. I get it. So what might we do?
In my next post I will share with you the strategy that finally worked for me. In my last years in the classroom, I was able to achieve a meaningful reading time every single day.