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Shanahan on Literacy

Timothy Shanahan

Literacy expert Timothy Shanahan shares best practices for teaching reading and writing. Dr. Shanahan is an internationally recognized professor of urban education and reading researcher who has extensive experience with children in inner-city schools and children with special needs. All posts are reprinted with permission from Shanahan on Literacy.

May 17, 2016

Reader question: Is there any research on how to prevent the summer slide?  More >

May 11, 2016

Lil Wayne can do rap, but he’d definitely be out of place at a Gospel Convention, sort of like a love affair with a happy ending in a Taylor Swift lyric. So what’s out of place in reading education? My nominee is the act of teaching kids to read nonsense words. Don’t do it. It doesn’t belong (it may even be worse than orange and green together). More >

May 3, 2016

Years ago I took ballroom dance. I used to write about those experiences in this space. It was a great opportunity for me as teacher, since with dance I struggled greatly (something there is about having your legs bound for the first year of life that makes graceful movement a challenge). More >

April 26, 2016

For nearly a century, leading educators and school textbooks have encouraged teachers to set a purpose for reading. Sometimes these purposes are called “motivation” or they might be stated as questions, “What is a population?” or “What is the major problem the main character faces?” More >

April 20, 2016

Reader question: I am currently teaching workshops and courses on reading and the Common Core and have approached these with regard to disciplinary literacy. So many of the teachers involved are seeing the value of creating discipline-specific reading experiences in their classrooms. This is especially true of secondary teachers but upper elementary as well. More >

April 11, 2016

Teacher question: Our district is trying to determine the proper pacing for introducing letter names/sounds in kindergarten. One letter per week seems too slow; 2 seems a bit fast. Most teachers are frustrated by 2 per week. We are thinking about going with 1 for the first 9 weeks, then doubling up. This would have all letter names/sounds introduce by February. More >

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"There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate's loot on Treasure Island." — Walt Disney