Book Bums

Day One, No More Playing Small

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1-1-21 I have a lot of friends and loved ones who are passionately chasing their dreams. Some sell cookies. (You go, girls!) One is making his mark on the fashion industry, while another is building his business in the world of golf. One is honing his computer skills to better serve within his place of […]

Listening

“My Kids Don’t Listen to Me!”

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  “My Kids Don’t Listen To Me!” When I speak of my desire to teach parents to teach their young kids to read, even before they enter a classroom, that’s the response that I often hear from parents. So why would kids respond to their teachers or tutors more readily than they would their moms […]

Phonemic Awareness

Say No to Guess and Go!

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Every parent in my school community knows about sight words. They may be called star words, snap words, or something else, but we know what they are. Early childhood classrooms feature from 25 to more than 100 words students must know on sight by the end of the school year. That\’s not a problem-the fluent […]

Phonemic Awareness

Tear Down the (Word) Walls

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My husband and I had a flat tire, and both of our phones were dead. (Note to self: Next overnight camping excursion- Bring phone chargers!) And, we had no spare tire. When a police officer stopped to ask if we needed help, we could not recall a single phone number of someone who could lend […]

Activities

Phonemic Awareness, Rhyming Words

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It’s important that beginning readers recognize the sounds in their speech. We have a code-based language. Before we draw kids’ awareness to the letters that represent sounds, it makes sense to ensure that kids can hear, identify, and even manipulate the sounds in words the words they will soon read and spell.

Alphabet

Your First Day Back in the Primary Classroom, 2021

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Since it’s usually crazy returning from a break and getting back into those classroom routines, this is the perfect time to try something new—something that can absolutely transform your students’ reading and spelling skills. Day 1, Back in the Classroom On the very day you arrive back in your classroom, please set aside 15 minutes […]

Phonemic Awareness

It Can Get Lonely When You’re Implementing Explicit, Systematic Phonics

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e time they reach third grade, sight words are not enough. Word Family associations are not sufficient to support the sophisticated demands of “at grade level” reading in third grade. There are no pictures. Word structures have become more complex. All of the tools provided by the typical greater Cincinnati early childhood classrooms have left many children ill-equipped.

Uncategorized

Tear Down the (Word) Walls!

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My husband and I had a flat tire, and both of our phones were dead. (Note to self: Next overnight camping excursion- Bring phone chargers!) And, we had no spare tire. When a police officer stopped to ask if we needed help, we were shocked and embarrassed because neither one of us could recall a […]

Books

22 Ways to Help Your Child Overachieve

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You can strengthen your children’s reading and writing by reading aloud with them. Okay. So that’s not ground-breaking news. You’ve heard it a thousand times, right? Let me say, here, that I bet you could do it so much better than you’ve been doing it. I have some teaching tips that I’d love for you […]

Books

Reading to Your Kids

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Reading to your kids is so very important. Even with high stakes tests hanging over my shoulders, as a classroom teacher I invest the time to read aloud to my students every single day because I believe that it is the best way to promote a love for books*. But reading aloud offers so much […]

Accuracy

Keep Your Eyes on the Prize

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If you’re listening to your young reader read aloud—which you absolutely should be doing, nearly every day— and s/he stops to look up toward the ceiling, you might have a problem to address. Here it is: Readers who are looking up are either 1) trying to remember the word or 2) they are praying that […]

Parenting

Wiggling Readers

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Is your child is a fiddler? Sorry. I don’t mean, “Is your child one who plays a fiddle?” I mean, “Is your child one who, when trying to read a book, plays with a shoelace (or, God forbid, Velcro!) or incessantly flips the corner of the page or taps a toe against the chair leg […]