Tag Archives: Educators

Creating Diverse Books for Leveled Reading: An Interview with Gaylia Taylor

In this blog post, we interviewed Reading Recovery® teacher and Bebop Books author, Gaylia Taylor, about creating diverse books for leveled reading.

Why is diversity important in books for students learning to read? How is diversity critical to your work as an author?

Gaylia Taylor: Diversity is essential for students learning to read because they are for the first time stepping out of their world into a world that exists outside of themselves. As authors, we can put readers in the proximity of others. When we are around others, we can begin to understand different cultures and appreciate others’ differences. We write to extend boundaries. Each group has a gift. If we collect all of the gifts and put them together, we know love. As an author, I write to celebrate this–the heritage of cultural diversities.

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Beginning Readers Webinar Resources: Diversity in Books for Beginning Young Readers

We had a wonderful turnout for last week’s webinar, “Diversity in Books for Independent and Instructional Reading and Writing in Kindergarten and First Grade” with Jennifer Serravallo, renowned literacy consultant, expert, and New York Times bestselling author, and Adjoa Burrowes, educator, artist, and award-winning Lee & Low author and illustrator.

Keep reading for links to resources and materials shared during the webinar and feel free to reach out for more information and/or a Professional Development certificate.

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Dive Into our STEM Diverse Reading List and Collection

At Lee & Low, we believe that showing diversity of people and communities in STEM is critical to inspiring and preparing our next generation of thinkers, leaders, and citizens. That’s why we created a beautiful collection of STEM titles features innovators and trailblazers from diverse backgrounds and historically underrepresented/excluded communities protecting Earth’s ecosystems. Continue reading

Learn More about COLLTS PreK Curriculum from the American Institutes for Research

Lee & Low Books is the exclusive publisher of the American Institutes for Research preschool curriculum, Cultivating Oral Language and Literacy Talents in Students (COLLTS). Today we’re sharing frequently asked questions about the curriculum.

Is COLLTS only for dual language learners?

No! The Center for English Learners at the American Institutes for Research designed the COLLTS PreK curriculum to meet the needs of dual language learners and English learners in any PreK setting. All children can benefit from COLLTS.

Are the books included in the kits?

Book bundles are sold separately because PreK settings vary widely in how many staff at different sites want to have the mentor text to share with students. You may customize number of copies for English here and Spanish here.

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Live Webinar with Jennifer Serravallo: Diversity in Books for Independent and Instructional Reading and Writing in Kindergarten and First Grade

As schools prepare for a critical academic year like no other, educators are looking to engage with students in essential literacy skills while providing high-quality literature that students can relate to, enjoy and learn from.

Join Jennifer Serravallo, renowned literacy consultant, expert, and New York Times bestselling author, and Adjoa Burrowes, educator, artist, and award-winning Lee & Low author and illustrator for an upcoming Live-Only Webinaras they discuss:

  • how diversity and identity fits into reading instruction
  • how to incorporate race and social justice into your literacy block
  • explicit tips for supporting comprehension, phonics instruction, and writing techniques with incredible texts

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Free Upcoming Webinar: Using Children’s Literature to Foster Empathy and Challenge Anti-Immigrant Bias

Join us for an energetic discussion about how to engage students in anti-bias thinking through literature in which they may recognize themselves and learn more about the lives, experiences, and perspectives of people who are immigrants.

This webinar is part of the Educator Summit on Challenging Anti-immigrant Bias in Schools and Society hosted by Re-Imagining Migration and the Anti-Defamation League.

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Parents and Caregivers: Use This Tool to Build a More Diverse Home Book Collection

Educators Grade Level Resources, images of survey forms against an orange background

We are so excited to announce that we have adapted our beloved Classroom Library Questionnaire into a tool for families and caregivers! Our newly launched Home Library Questionnaire is now available for free to download.

The Home Library Questionnaire will help you:

  • Reflect on your home library
  • Broaden the types of books you read with your children
  • Diversify your child’s independent reading and advocate for more inclusivity in school booklists
  • Choose books that are inclusive of all people, backgrounds, and cultures

Here are some additional tips about reading with your child and making the most out of your reading experience:

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Watch the Webinar: Best Practices for English Learners in PreK

Thank you to everyone who joined us for last week’s webinar, “Best Practices for English Learners in Prekindergarten” with experts Dr. Patricia Garcia-Arena, Principal Researcher, and Dr. Rebecca Bergey, Senior Researcher, at the Center for English Learners at the American Institutes for Research. You can access the webinar below, or here on Youtube.

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Diverse Texts Aren’t Just for Elementary School: Building Inclusive Curricula for Middle and High School

In this guest post, Paul Bambrick-Santoyo and Stephen Chiger, co-authors of Love and Literacy: A Practical Guide for Grades 5-12 to Finding the Magic in Literature, share different ways that high school educators can approach text selection and build inclusive curricula.

Here’s a thought experiment: Consider the two high school book lists below.  Which one would you prefer for a child you love?

All of the texts above are powerful, and all could make for fruitful study. But readers of this blog won’t likely need to be convinced of the advantages of list 2. A great curriculum makes space for more than one voice; it invites students to see themselves and each other through new eyes.

Why, then, do so many middle and high schools still look more like reading list 1?

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2021 Diverse Summer Reading Books for Grades 6-8

Diverse Summer Reading List graphic

Want to freshen up your Summer Reading list, but not sure where to begin? Kick off summer with our fun, colorful, and printable Diverse Summer Reading List that will get all kids engaged in reading! Our list includes both fiction and nonfiction, bilingual Spanish/English titles, and a diverse range of cultures—in other words, the right book for every reader!

In this blog post, we’ve rounded up books from our summer reading book list for grades 6-8. You can find more of our 2021 summer reading titles in our Diverse Summer Reading List and the corresponding book collection.

Keep reading for some of our favorite entertaining Lee & Low picks!

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