Sunday, February 22, 2015

Teaching Reading

This is my site for myself as a reading teacher.  I keep class info, photos, resources, and some useful links here.  It's easy for me to refer to it and hopefully it's easy for parents and students to refer to it. If you're looking for something specific, you can browse the subject matter to the left or  use the search box placed towards the top.

This is what the teaching of reading is about.  Kids and adults reading books on their own.  The two students above were some below grade level students of mine a few years ago.  I had asked them to arrange the books on the shelf in the background and the books in the milk crates into a little neater arrangement.

Notice what they are doing.  They're not working, they're reading! I remember yelling at them to get back to work but they kept getting distracted by the books.   I could not have been happier.  When I see that sort of thing occur, I know I'm making headway in teaching students how to read.

This is a picture of me with my father.  It was probably taken in 1958 or so.  This is how reading starts.  A family member opens a book and the natural interest in the world of print begins and the world of reading opens.

I used to take my students to Martin Luther King Library in the University Circle area.  I worked at a school where I could walk my students.  When they were given the chance to wander the stacks and find books that appealed to them they would get excited about reading.  They would grab books and then excitedly show them to me, share them with friends, and get involved with the process of literacy and reading. Truly, magic happened.

I never really gave them assignments, per se, I would have them turn in a list of what they looked at and maybe write stuff down sometimes, but mostly, I let them pick books and read.  Weirdly, this is something schools don't really do much of.  Here you can see students reading some sort of comic book.  I really never cared what they read, I just want to see books in their hands and pages being turned.

Talk about timeless pursuits.  Kids standing on the edge of a pond on a sunny day and throwing rocks at nothing in particular, just heaving them in the water.  They looked so forward to this and would do it quite a while before getting distracted by something else.

The two above shots were usually part of the library visit also.  Being located in the University Circle Area, a short walk from the Library was the art museum duck pond and open space to run. The police station was on the way and we did a couple of field trips there too.


I've also taught adults reading and writing skills and helped them gain the skills and knowledge necessary to take the GED.  Teaching adults usually centers around  rechecking phonics, improving fluency, teaching comprehension, and test taking skills.  Most adults have a reasonable grasp of phonics but often a review of phonics rules and in particular, the exceptions, can be very useful.  The biggest problem with teaching adults, and this goes for art or reading classes, is getting adults to be patient with themselves.  Little kids are used to making mistakes and getting things wrong, whereas adults, take mistakes personally,  and the patience they would extend to teaching children, they do not grant themselves.  Adults studying towards their GED often bring a lot of negative baggage about education in general, which  takes time to wade through.


This site will eventually contain all my reading teacher information. I'm migrating and editing my general blogspot blog, which is mostly reading to this site, an actual site for reading. It will eventually be a personal site of just what I'm doing around the house which usually centers around gardening, biking, cooking, making jewelry, house maintenance, and maybe what I'm reading. 

The links tab, at the top, will take you to all my teaching experiences with all age and ability levels, from kindergarten through college age.

I  started this December, 2012.

The format is an adapted picture window template from google blogger.  Seems nice and easy to use so far!