Reading Strategies Resources from TeachersFirst
This collection of reviewed resources includes teaching ideas and sites to promote proven reading strategies of effective readers. Find engaging texts to use as your class focuses on a particular strategy as well as professional resources to improve your own understanding of this research-based approach to building literacy skills. Don't miss "In the classroom" ideas for specific projects or ideas for before, during, and after reading.
GradesK to 12
In the ClassroomShare this link on your teacher web page or in a newsletter. You might even talk to your parent organization about promoting TogetheRead as a whole-school activity. Maybe even host a TogetheRead family evening in the gym or library.
GradesK to 12
tag(s): characterization (15), charts and graphs (189), graphic organizers (46), guided reading (47), independent reading (111), main idea (10), note taking (26), reading comprehension (99), reading strategies (30), summarizing (13), venn diagrams (15), vocabulary (316)
In the ClassroomBookmark and save this site as a resource for many graphic organizers to use with reading, writing, and content instruction throughout the year. Use these tools in your reading/language arts lessons, science, social studies, and more. Learning support teachers and those who work with gifted students who eventually "hit the wall" in tougher courses can encourage students to create organizers and see which types improve their quiz and test scores the most. Including them in the choice may make a big difference with your more stubborn students.
Grades5 to 12
In the ClassroomAlthough geared toward struggling readers and Social Studies, this site is excellent for use with any content area reading lessons. Choose an activity for each month as a focus lesson. Incorporate the strategy throughout all lessons by modifying questions and included activities. Share with ESL/ELL and special education teachers as a resource for improving reading comprehension. This site works well with Common Core strategies for informational text throughout the curriculum.
Grades6 to 12
tag(s): american revolution (74), civil rights (99), civil war (138), cold war (27), colonial america (105), colonization (15), emancipation proclamation (12), new deal (5), slavery (68), world war 1 (46), world war 2 (143)
In the ClassroomBookmark and save this site as a resource for American history lessons throughout the year. The final segment of each lesson, the "Central Historical Question," has been noted as the most important part. If you don't have time for the full lesson, incorporate the historical question into your lesson plans as part of your classroom discussion, or journal activities. Perhaps you can use it as an essential question for your unit. Challenge students to create a talking avatar using a photo or other image (legally permitted to be reproduced). The avatars can be used to explain the central historical question. Use a site such as Blabberize (reviewed here).
GradesK to 5
In the ClassroomBookmark this site to find printables, posters, rubrics and much more to enhance your reading instruction. Share with other staff members as a resource for use with their reading program.
Grades1 to 6
This site includes advertising.
In the ClassroomReading Rockets is a fantastic resource for teachers, librarians, parents, and principals. Be sure to sign up for the newsletter for the latest information, blogs, thoughts, and ideas for teaching reading. Use this website as a resource for your classroom, library, or even with you school action committees. Provide a link to this site on your class webpage. Install widgets for reading, and find the latest apps to support literacy. Join reading blogs, and add widgets to make your reading strategies complete.
GradesK to 12
In the ClassroomCapture your student's interest in technology and reading with eBooks. Join the latest craze to promote life long reading. Join blogs to see what other teachers are doing. Use as a parent resource to help promote interest. Use as background information while writing grants or proposals for technology grants. Be sure to investigate the variety of classroom ideas for using technology and eBooks.
Consider incorporating technology into your literature circles. You might want to start with a whole class novel, having students listen to certain chapters using an eBook. Have the "discussion director" for the group post questions on Edmodo reviewed here with the understanding that they may answer the questions on Edmodo, but these are "discussion starters" for the circle meeting in class.
Grades3 to 10
In the ClassroomThere are so many ways to use this site! After introducing a feature from this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector, set up a learning station with a computer ready to play one of the phonics games for younger students. Older students can watch a video about how to draw cartoons; there are several from which to pick! Ask your older students to read through the very creative and thorough tutorial for Comics Lab Extreme, and then form small groups of students to create a story of an historic person, an advertisement for a curriculum topic being studied, or demonstrate the meaning of a word using Comics Lab Extreme. Don't miss the many other comic-creation tools from the TeachersFirst collectionfound here.
Grades3 to 12
In the ClassroomMake learning how to learn part of your class routine at any grade level and in any subject. Feature one or more new study strategy each month and share this entire list as a link from your class web page for students and parents to access both in and out of school.
GradesK to 12
In the ClassroomSave this site in your favorites on your class computer or TeachersFirst membership. Open the doors to engage students in the active reading process to enhance levels of comprehension between the text and the reader. The flexible framework lets you choose to use any of the strategies as a stand-alone, ready-to-present on the interactive whiteboard, or as a lesson for whole class viewing. Many familiar literary works are used as examples, or you may easily apply the strategy to any literary work that your class is currently reading. Videos and Power Points for modeling and practicing the strategies are embedded, so all you have to do is click to start and let them work their magic. Follow up by downloading the printable study guides, graphic organizers, and other handouts to use before, during, and after reading.
Grades4 to 12
Be sure to check out the videos, which include commercials from the 1960s! Many of the video and audio features require Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.
In the ClassroomThis site has so much to offer, the possibilities are endless. Obviously, this site is handy with ESL and ELL students. But there is SO much here to explore for teachers of elementary (social studies or language arts), AND secondary teachers trying to reinforce grammar skills, connect history and writing, and more.
Share portions of this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. With primary students, set up learning stations. Have cooperative learning groups explore the site together. Have groups investigate a specific area of this site and create a multimedia presentation to share with the class: wiki, blog entry, podcast, online book, or video. Need some "technology tips?" How about having students create a podcast using Podomatic (reviewed here). Share the "student-created" videos on a tool such as TeacherTube (explained here). Have students write online books using a tool such as Bookemon, reviewed here.
GradesK to 12
In the ClassroomNo matter what you teach, these resources will help you target reading and study skills for better comprehension and more.
Grades4 to 12
In the ClassroomIf you need ideas to get students reading for fun and to help develop their confidence, try this site. Highlight this on your class website so parents can try the activities with their older students. When doing author biographies, share this site with your class using an interactive whiteboard or projector. Be sure to check out the "Classroom Strategies" link for even more literacy ideas.
Grades2 to 7
This site includes advertising.
In the ClassroomInclude this site on your class web page or newsletter. Use selected articles in class to teach main idea or reading strategies on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Parents would appreciate knowing about this engaging place for their children. Students are invited to submit articles or comments in several places in the magazine. Encourage your students to participate in online publication possibilities at this site -- with written parent permission, of course!
GradesK to 4
In the ClassroomThese texts would also be easy to display on an interactive whiteboard and use to teach about main idea, summarizing, or reading strategies using the whiteboard tools. Put this link on your teacher web page for students to practice reading in the classroom or at home. To get an exact reading level, you may want to cut and paste a section of an article and submit it to an online reading level analyzer .
Grades8 to 12
A Journey to the Center of the Earth by Jules Verne
Persuasion by Jane Austen
A Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave by Frederick Douglass
The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne
The Odyssey by Homer
Julius Caesar by William Shakespeare
King Lear by William Shakespeare
Macbeth by William Shakespeare
Much Ado About Nothing by William Shakespeare
Othello by William Shakespeare
Richard III by William Shakespeare
The Taming of the Shrew by William Shakespeare
The Tempest by William Shakespeare
The Prince and the Pauper by Mark Twain
In the ClassroomAs you prepare to teach one of these classics, don't miss this helpful resource, even if you use a different publisher's edition of the works! If you have highly-able students preparing on their own for the AP tests, these guides could help a motivated student recap works they read in the past or guide themselves through independent reading of the works.
Grades7 to 12
In the ClassroomThis site is useful as a supplement to a geology unit or for review. Include it on your teacher web page for students to access both in and out of class. It is also a great reference tool when preparing your lesson plans. This is a great site to use when teaching about informational text(s). Open it on an interactive whiteboard and review reading strategies using highlighters and pens as you learn about plate tectonics.
GradesK to 12
In the ClassroomTry these ready-to-go PowerPoint presentations on an interactive whiteboard or projector in your classroom. Some may also be well-suited for individual students to run on a single classroom computer for remediation or review. There are games, resources and a lot of information. The site includes a disclaimer asking to be notified if users find any copyrighted material. TeachersFirst recommends that you NOT download copies but instead use them online, just in case.
GradesK to 12
Be sure to try the model books and read the tips for writers and illustrators. Take the time to learn the tool. Click to see a sample we made for you and placed on our site.
In the ClassroomLocate or create your own copyright-free text and images for which you have the rights to make more than one copy (Fair Use does not apply!). Copy/paste the text and resize/upload the images--following simple directions to create the pages and accompanying hints. Be sure to learn about the three interactive characters who teach the strategies! Publish and download the files of the finished "books" and save on your computer. Extract the zipped files and save locally, on your network, or burn to CD so your students can access them directly.
The uses of this one are endless. If you take the time to get permission from the publisher to use text from some of your textbooks or reading books, you could create interactive versions to use in your classroom or with special ed students. More simply, use student-written stories and artwork (scanned -- or created in Paint) to create the "book." Imagine creating a class "book" at the end of a unit on Communities or Animals, and including images you take with your digital camera. If you copy the CD's, students could sign out the "book" and read it to relatives using their home computer. You can keep the "library" of past books to help future classes. Or ask your middle/high school or gifted students to create books as writing/service project for struggling readers to use.