Over the past two decades we’ve been developing our tools as teachers of independent readers. We use them in classroom demonstrations all of the time and teachers usually respond by saying, “Where did you get those tools? I need them!” We smile and respond, “We made them.”
We are thrilled to announce that we made you a set too.
Our latest professional resource is called Teacher’s Toolkit for Independent Reading and it is available now for pre-order from Stenhouse. In the coming weeks we will be sharing free videos and blogs, holding webinars and Twitter chats, but right now we are exhausted. We just handed in our page proofs, helped edit our last video and need to rest. We’ll share the components of the toolkit with you here to give you a preview of what’s to come.
Here are four things we are especially excited about:
1. The toolkit includes ALL of the tools you will need. It includes a professional book we wrote in question and answer format with around 100 tools you can use right away. A teacher’s reading notebook for showing students’ your entries along with samples of entries you can get started with. Grade level fiction and nonfiction texts you can read to students for modeling. Two kinds of sticky notes- one for preparing your teaching and another for leaving students with reminders. A variety of note-taking forms and tabs to organize them. A grade level specific guide helping you decide what to teach and what to look and listen for. An organizer that helps you keep all of the tools in one place. A website with 30 videos of us conferring, taking you into classrooms with us, and leading PD style conversations.
2.The toolkits are grade level specific! That means we included teaching texts and a conferring guide specific to your grade level with teaching ideas, sample notebook entries, and assessment charts. (They are only available for grades 3, 4 and 5 for now).
3. The toolkit treats you like a professional and places you in the decision-making seat to know what is best for your student readers. What we did not do is create a manual or script. We trust you to use these tools as professionals and make choices based on what your are learning about the individual readers in your classroom. The toolkit takes the big ideas of our previous books and brings them to the day-to-day practical level, but still leaves plenty of room for you to be responsive to your students.
4.The toolkit is pretty. Maybe that shouldn’t matter, but it does to us. It is sleek, easy to carry around as you confer, and has pouches and tabs for all of the tools. It is our favorite new school supply.
Feel free to email or tweet at us if you have any questions or if you just want to squeal with delight with us. You can reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org and @drgravityg, email@example.com and @ReneeDHouser and @Gravity_Renee on Instagram.