Our guest blogger this week is Jen Shettel, a professor at Millersville University. Jen writes:
This section looks at putting the 7 Strengths into action in our classrooms and give a brief dip into some best practices, management techniques, and methods for supporting independent readers. I suspect that there wasn’t a whole lot of new ideas in these three chapters for many of us, but it’s always great confirmation to know that the practices you ARE doing are good ones!
There have been whole books written about the “Best Practices” in this chapter! I thought the authors did a nice job of giving an overview of some of these and connecting to the 7 Strengths. My favorites were the two that encourage peer collaboration - reading buddies (pp. 145-146) and reading clubs (pp. 146-147). Which techniques presented in this chapter spoke to you OR what is one you are currently using that is successful?
Encouraging Independent Reading - can I get an, “Amen?!?” We’ve been hearing over and over about the power of choice, access, and independent reading - not just in this book, but from all of the big names in reading - from Doug Fisher to Donalyn Miller. I’m a big proponent of choice and access and not limiting children to books “on their level” or that are deemed appropriate by adults. What are your thoughts on this?
Oh, classroom management - the backbone of every exemplary teacher! Engagement is KEY here, and making sure that students are active participants and constructors of their own learning is of critical importance. I’m a fan of Turn & Talk (p. 163), but sometimes I think that is overused. What are your tried-and-true ways to make sure students are actively engaged in their own learning?