Recently in Reading Instruction Category

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September 19, 2011

Has Reading Instruction Lost the 'Gist'?

In the New York Times, literary critic and Core Knowledge Foundation founder E.D. Hirsch reasserts his case that the recent drop in SAT reading scores derives not from student demographic changes but from a long-term de-intellectualization of elementary school curricula: The most credible analyses...

September 15, 2011

What's Behind the SAT Reading-Score Drop?

Washington Post education blogger Valerie Strauss takes issue with the College Board's explanation that the decline in the SAT reading scores this past year was caused largely by an increase in the number and diversity of test-takers. She puts the blame squarely on the effects of recent education po...

August 22, 2011

The 10-Year Lesson Plan

Interesting advice: High school English teacher Epiphany in Baltimore explains that he always teaches with a view toward what students will retain from a lesson 10 years later: I always teach books with the "ten year" goal in mind, asking myself what will this kid remember in ten years? I hope s...

August 08, 2011

Graphic Novels: Snooki in Book-form?

Hopefully, Bill Ferriter of The Tempered Radical found shelter in a comment-proof safe house before, in a recent blog post, calling graphic novels "the literary equivalent of Jersey Shore." He argues, with some anecdotal evidence, that graphic novels take away the need for students to think while ...

July 11, 2011

Dumbing Down 'Gatsby'

Film critic Roger Ebert is fuming mad about a "retold," intermediate reader version of The Great Gatsby published by MacMillan. The book employs greatly simplified prose, comes in at less than half the length of the original, and seriously muddles the ending. For Ebert, the whole project amounts to ...

May 19, 2011

A New Take on College-Level Reading

They say that authentic literacy assignments can help prepare students for college. But Tobie Lynn Trachina, a 4th grade English-language learners teacher in suburban New Orleans, is taking the concept to a new level by having her students actually read and analyze college and university information...

May 06, 2011

In Defense of Testing

Political blogger Matthew Yglesias points to a new report showing that nearly half of adults in Detroit are functionally illiterate. In that light, he contends, it's hard to argue against the need for standardized testing in schools: Under those circumstances, I find it difficult to be seized with...

April 27, 2011

New Ideas in Spec. Ed. Language Arts Instruction

The Council for Exceptional Children is holding its annual conference here in D.C. this week. When I attended on Tuesday, a number of sessions were oriented around studies on tools and techniques for improving instruction for students with special needs. Some of the studies' outcomes seemed to car...

January 11, 2011

America's Word Gap

Commenting on an NPR story on the disparity in language exposure between poor children and children in professional homes, urban educator Dan Brown questions how much individual teachers can do close student achievement gaps. He writes:

January 05, 2011

Muslim-American Kids Face an Absence of Stories

With a growing Muslim student population, Minnesota schools are struggling to fill their shelves with books these students can relate to.

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