Books can encourage kids of all ages to enact change in their communities. Because it’s never too early to make a difference, each month we’ll be sharing a list of social activism books for each grade level starting with Kindergarten. Check out our social activism book roundup below, and for more social activism titles, check out our full printable Social Activism Diverse Reading List! Continue reading
Social Emotional Learning (SEL) is a hot topic, but it’s certainly not new. Skills like empathy, cultivating and maintaining positive relationships, recognizing and managing emotions, problem solving, approaching tasks with grit and perseverance, and taking on others’ perspectives have always, and will always, be crucial to kids’ success. Research shared by CASEL reports that SEL programs lead to “immediate improvements in mental health, social skills, and academic achievement,” and “up to 18 years later, students exposed to SEL in school continue to do better than their peers on a number of indicators: positive social behaviors and attitudes, skills such as empathy and teamwork, and academics.” SEL is certainly worthy of time and attention from those who support children’s development.
Books are valuable tools for guiding conversations about SEL topics. Children can examine and learn from characters’ actions and experiences and relate them to their own. Of course, book selection is key. When kids see both themselves and others in diverse books, it says, “You matter. Reflect on your experiences.” and “Others matter. Listen and learn.” Therein lies the heart of SEL.
As students grow and change, so do their social emotional learning needs. Linking diverse books to SEL goals and challenges across different ages is a powerful way to support students as they navigate each developmental stage. This blog series explores how diverse books can be used to support social emotional learning at different grade levels. Continue reading
In the fourth post of our Reading Conferences with Beginning Readers blog series, renowned literacy expert Jennifer Serravallo shares how to read sight words automatically and accurately. This post is taken from our free, downloadable “Success Starts Early: Reading Conferences with Your Beginning Readers” guide.
What are sight words and why are they important?
Sight words are words that children have learned to recognize without having to decode. Sight words are some of the most frequently used words in English and some of the first words early readers learn to recognize on sight and read. Level A, B, and C books are filled with these familiar words. When children read books at these levels, they should be able to recognize the words they have learned and read them automatically. Continue reading
Thank you to everyone who joined us last week for our webinar, “Guided Reading in Kindergarten”! If you missed it live (or just want to watch again), here is a recording of the webinar:
Click below for Jennifer Serravallo’s Reading Conferences with Your Beginning Readers document and a one-hour professional development certificate. You can also learn more about Bebop Books and our leveled reading collections by clicking below.
In the third post of our Reading Conferences with Beginning Readers blog series, renowned literacy expert Jennifer Serravallo shares how to use pictures to help children read text. This post is taken from our free, downloadable “Success Starts Early: Reading Conferences with Your Beginning Readers” guide.
Teaching valuable reading skills and behaviors is essential in the beginning of kindergarten. When children start to read and engage with texts at levels A, B, and C, they need to know different strategies to use when they come to a word they don’t know or have to figure out what’s happening in the story.
It’s Back-to-School time, which means new educator resources on the Lee & Low blog!
Lee & Low Books is extremely excited to announce our “Success Starts Early: Reading Conferences with Your Beginning Readers” Guide written by renowned literacy expert, Jennifer Serravallo! Jennifer Serravallo is a prominent leader in the field of education and literacy, and a national literacy consultant, speaker, and bestselling author. We are proud to feature these new Conferencing Documents as essential resources for teachers in the classroom working with beginning readers.
Our Conferencing Guide includes tips and techniques for conferring with readers at guided reading levels A, B, and C. The Guide also includes “Teaching Cheat Sheets” that feature how to examine a student’s reading behavior, and turn those observations into teaching moments so students can achieve the targeted reading skill.
Below, Jennifer Serravallo shares what conferencing entails in the classroom.
It’s Back to School time, and that means new resources here on the Lee & Low Blog! In the first post in our new series on Culturally Responsive Teaching, educator Lindsay Barrett shares ideas for read alouds that build relationships in Kindergarten.
Nothing evokes a sense of “back to school” like a snaking line of tentative-but-excited, freshly scrubbed Kindergarteners slowly making their way down the school hallway. There is so much for new Kindergarten students to learn—how to open snack and lunch items, where to find the restroom, how to care for and share materials; the list goes on and on.
But seasoned Kindergarten teachers know that all of this is secondary to (and made easier by) helping each child quickly develop a sense of belonging to a community of learners. One of the ways to achieve this is to use culturally responsive teaching strategies right from the start of the Kindergarten year. (What is culturally responsive teaching? Check out this post.) A culturally responsive mindset emphasizes relationships. The beginning of the school year is the perfect time to establish these bonds. Continue reading
February is almost upon us! At Lee & Low, we believe that Black history is American history and should be celebrated and taught all year long. But February can be a great time to shine a spotlight on favorite books or freshen up a dated collection with new titles. Here are eight of our favorite Black History Month Books for kindergarten through second grade: Continue reading
Over the past several weeks, I have demonstrated what compare and contrast can look like in second and third grade. Even as young as kindergarten, early readers can learn to compare and contrast successfully within and between texts. In doing so, teachers can assess students’ abilities at close reading, comprehension, and interpretation.
Below is a comparison of two books of similar topic and genre. I have created sample questions to teach towards and check mastery of each of the three Common Core categories. These are by no means the only questions to ask in each category, but these provide an overview of the progression in question complexity and mastery of the texts.
By creating a range of compare and contrast questions across the standards, we are able to differentiate for students within a class, provide extension opportunities for ready learners, or move the whole class from literal- to higher-level thinking over the course of several lessons.
Meat Pies (Level: A)