20-year study of over 70,000 cases in 27 countries Mariah Evans, Univ. of Nevada, Reno 2010 For years, educators have thought the strongest predictor of attaining high levels of education was having parents who were highly educated. But, strikingly, this massive study showed that the difference between being raised in a bookless home compared to being raised in a home with a 500-book library has as great an effect on the level of education a child will attain as having parents who are barely literate (3 years of education) compared to having parents who have a university education (15 or 16 years of education). Both factors, having a 500-book library or having university-educated parents, propel a child 3.2 years further in education, on average.
For a study to be published later this year in Reading Psychology, Allington and colleagues selected students in 17 high-poverty elementary schools in Florida and, for three consecutive years, gave each child 12 books, from a list the students provided, on the last day of school.In all, 852 students received books each year, paid for mostly by federal Title I money. Three years later, researchers found that those students who received books had "significantly higher" reading scores, experienced less of a summer slide and read more on their own each summer than the 478 who didn't get books.Students selected books from lists they created.
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When reading just a few books each year, students cannot read enough to develop strong literacy skills. “Language Arts and Crafts (Calkins)” send a message that books are not innately meaningful.
Creating a classroom where readers flourish
Creating Classrooms Where Readers Flourish<br />Donalyn Miller <br />email@example.com<br />@donalynbooks<br />
Trinity Meadows Intermediate School— Keller, Texas<br />teachermagazine.org— “The Book Whisperer” blog<br />The Book Whisperer: Awakening the Inner Reader in Every Child <br />
“The single factor most strongly associated with reading achievement—more than socioeconomic status or any instructional approach—is independent reading.”— Stephen Krashen, The Power of Reading<br />
“Regular reading not only boosts the likelihood of an individual's academic and economic success -- facts that are not especially surprising -- but it also seems to awaken a person's social and civic sense.”— “To Read or Not to Read,” NEA, 2007 <br />
Core Idea<br />Carve out more reading time for students.<br />
“The average higher- achieving students read approximately three times as much a week as their lower-achieving classmates, not including out of school reading.”—Richard Allington, What Works for Struggling Readers<br />
Core Idea<br />Increase access and exposure to books.<br />
. <br />Books in the home as important as parents’ educational level in determining level of education children will attain. –Research in Social Stratification and Mobility, June 2010<br />
Students from 17 high-poverty schools, who received 12 free books to read for three consecutive summers, had significantly higher reading scores and experienced less of a summer slide. –Allington , 2010<br />
Core Idea<br />Reposition instruction around independent reading.<br />
“…students are not reading more or better as a result of the whole-class novel. Instead, students are reading less and are less motivated, less engaged, and less likely to read in the future.”—Douglas Fisher and Gay Ivey, "Farewell to Farewell to Arms: De-Emphasizing the Whole Class Novel"<br />
Whole Class Novel Benefits<br />Provides a common text for instructional purposes and reference.<br />Assures that students read at least a few books.<br />Exposes students to works with cultural, historical, or literary significance.<br />
Whole Class Novel Concerns<br />No single text can meet the reading levels or interests of the wide range of readers in a classroom.<br />Novel units take too long. Students cannot read enough to develop strong literacy skills.<br />Extensions and fun activities reduce authentic reading, writing, and thinking.<br />
How can we reap the benefits of teaching a whole class novel, and minimize the concerns?<br />
If your culture or curriculum requires reading a whole class novel…<br />
Shorten the amount of time you spend reading the book.<br />
Strip units of activities like projects and vocabulary work.<br />
Alternate whole class novel units with independent reading units.<br />
Use read alouds and shared reading, particularly with difficult text.<br />
Provide students time to read in class and receive support from you.<br />
If you are not required to teach specific books…<br />
Design instruction around genres, themes, literary elements, or comprehension strategies, not specific books.<br />
Use common texts like short stories, articles, and the first chapters of books for modeling and teaching.<br />
Create guiding questions or independent practice that can be used with any book.<br />
Select books from a range of reading levels.<br />
Ask students to apply what they have learned to their independent books.<br />