Must reads for transforming your classroom
To transform your classroom into a proficient reader classroom, I suggest you read 3 books. Regardless of grade level, every one should read Mosaic of Thought and Think-Aloud Strategies. Then, choose a lesson book to read according to your grade level.
However, if you read all five books on my list, you will be able to choose from a range of lessons in order to teach the diverse levels of readers you encounter.
There are many other books that you will want to read as you branch into your content area or as you get to know the needs of your students. CLICK here to find my more extensive, annotated bibliography I have compiled to help you. I welcome suggestions! If you have discovered books you can’t live without, please let me know. I would like to add them.
But, to begin with, I believe everyone should start with these Must Reads. (Click on titles to read more at the publisher's website.)
Mosaic of Thought, Second Edition: The Power of Comprehension Strategy Instruction, Ellin Oliver Keene and Susan Zimmermann, Heinemann, 2007, ISBN: 0325010358: After David Pearson et al published research on using proficient reader strategies in the classroom, Keene and Zimmermann tried teaching the strategies, added sensory imaging, and wrote the first edition of Mosaic in 1997. After reading this book, teachers understand metacognition and the need to teach students how to think about their thinking. Most teachers who read this book tell me it helped them read better. True for me, too.
Improving Comprehension with Think-Aloud Strategies, Jeffrey D. Wilhelm, Scholastic, 2001, ISBN: 9780439218597: Keene and Zimmermann call thinking aloud the “bread and butter” of metacognitive teaching. It takes practice and thankfully Wilhelm details the steps for many types of think alouds. I didn't even know there were different think alouds when I started. Very helpful.
Reading With Meaning (Second Edition): Teaching Comprehension in the Primary Grades, Debbie Miller, Stenhouse Publishers, 2002, ISBN: 1571103074: A collection of lesson plans for teaching K-2 students how to use the strategies. Also, use with students new to learning the strategies.
Strategies That Work: Teaching Comprehension for Understanding and Engagement, Stephanie Harvey and Anne Goudvis, Stenhouse Publishers, 2007, ISBN: 157110481X: A compilation of lesson plans, which explain how to teach students to use each of the 7 proficient reader strategies. Generally, the book is used with intermediate and middle school students.
Do I Really Have to Teach Reading? Content Comprehension Grades 6-8, Cris Tovani, Stenhouse Publishers, 2004, ISBN: 1571103767: Besides helping middle school students, Tovani’s lessons also work for challenging elementary students and teaching high school students.