Thursday, June 6, 2013

Reflection on "Reading Without Limits" Inroduction

Who is Maddie Witter and why did she write this book?

Maddie Witter is a remarkable literacy teacher that also took part in founding KIPP Infinity Middle School.  She has fascinating evidence to back up the elements of effective reading instruction.  In this book, she shares her knowledge about shared reading, guided reading, and choice reading; vocabulary instruction; creating reading assessments; and how to make reading fun. 

In the preface of the book, we learn the purpose of the book.  What is the purpose of the book?

The purpose of "Reading Without Limits" is to be a guidebook or map to lead children to their highest level of thinking.  Maddie and other teachers in this book want to create lifelong, independently motivated learners.  They share their strategies with us because they want ALL children to succeed. 

In the preface, we learn what we need to do to help struggling readers.  Choose one to discuss.
How do you or how do you plan to make this happen in your classroom?

I agree with all of the things mentioned to help struggling readers, but I especially feel that frequent and specific feedback are so important. Children and adults alike need to be told on how to improve things that they are struggling with. When we provide feedback, not only do we look at the child, we need to reflect on our instruction.

Here are the research based strategies that "Reading Without Limits" mentions: model explicit direction instruction, create specific knowledge goals, provide frequent, specific feedback, create tasks that are challenging/doable, link learning to real life, teach how to accurately self-assess, give students an abundance of interesting books that gives them some control and choice, and encourage interacting learning.

In the introduction we learn about the components of a strong reading program.  What are they?  Which one are you struggling with?  Do you have a plan to improve it?  Can we help you come up with a plan to improve it?

The components of a strong reading program are choice reading, shared reading, guided reading, and the values.  The values listed are: stamina, joy & rigor, high expectations, and more time.  I am struggling with joy!  I am a joyful person, but I tend to hold back when I am around others.  I want my excitement to show through!  This is something I plan on addressing, but I’m not sure how yet. Please share your ideas!! 

So, there you have it.  This is a little insight into the book study on "Reading Without Limits".  It just started, so you are not too late to join in!  You can order the book through amazon by mail or on your kindle. 
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  1. Hi Tasha,
    Thanks for stopping by Kids Math Teacher and posting a comment. Yes, I have a weekly linky for math (MaTh activity Thursday)--technically I leave the linky open until the next Wednesday, but by the time I post on Saturday I don't know who goes back to check the links. : ) I'll be following your blog by RSS feed--not sure if that gets added to your follower count.
    Kids Math Teacher

    1. Okay, thanks! I'll have to join in on the linky! Thanks for following me. :-)

  2. HI Tasha- I saw your comment on my blog, and just joined yours!

  3. Fantastic! Things have been hectic and I just now could come by! I love, love, love, love that you took the time blog about the book study!

    Were you able to come up with that form we talked about? I'd like to share it and get a link to your blog on mine!!