Good teaching pays off. When you provide students with constant opportunities to read and to write, and when you actively and assertively teach into their best efforts, their literacy development will astonish you, their parents, the school administrators—and best of all, the students themselves.
— Lucy Calkins
As they have done throughout their more than 30-year history, Lucy Calkins and her Teachers College Reading and Writing Project colleagues continue to incorporate important new thinking into their body of work, including all they have learned from working shoulder-to-shoulder with teachers in hundreds of classrooms. Right now, that ongoing work is taking the form of the third major revision of the primary reading and writing units in the Units of Study curriculum.
✦Lucy and her coauthors are revising the curriculum to make it more culturally responsive.
✦Lucy and her coauthors are incorporating the best of what they’ve learned from the science of reading researchand also incorporating the best of new comprehension research, language research, and research on knowl-edge generation.
✦Whole-class instruction, including minilessons, mid-workshop teaching, and shares, will be briefer.
✦There will be increased emphasis on phonics, spelling, and conventions.
✦Independent work time sections (formerly conferring and small group work) will be even more supportive of assessment-based small group and one-to-one instruction.
✦Assessment tools and methodswill be clearer and more supportive for kids and teachers.
✦There will be new point-of-use coaching notes as well as additional resources to support adaptation of the curriculum for multilingual learners.
✦Exciting design changes include 4-color throughout and an updated, user-friendly format.
The Units of Study for Teaching Reading offer grade-by-grade reading curricula, K–5, and grade-band units for grades 6–8 to meet ambitious world-class standards. Drawing on learning gleaned from decades of research, curriculum development, and working shoulder-to-shoulder with students, teachers, and school leaders in schools, think tanks, and advanced Institute sections, the reading series is rooted in the Project's best practices and newest thinking. The series includes state-of-the-art charts and tools, methods for teaching reading, undergirded by the Project's learning progressions in reading for literature and informational texts.
How do you support upper-grade and middle school readers if they are new to the norms and culture of reading workshop, particularly if they may also have missed some foundational instruction in reading fiction and nonfiction? How do you do this in a way that builds a strong reading community and strong habits and routines? How do you approach all this if you are new to the teaching of reading workshop? The Up the Ladder Reading units offer a very good place to start.
The new Up the Ladder units are designed for children in grades 3–6 who may not yet have had many opportunities to practice writing narrative, information, and opinion pieces, or might not have had those experiences in workshop-style classrooms. The units give these children opportunities to engage in repeated successful practice and to move rapidly along a gradually increasing progression of challenges. Frequent checkpoints channel kids to double-check that their work has gotten substantially better. At each of these checkpoints, they—and you—will see that their growth has been dramatic.
The Teachers College Reading and Writing Project and Heinemann are proud to announce the release of four additional book-length units of study, each addressing an especially key topic from the Units of Study If...Then... books.
These new book-length units have been written to fit tongue and groove into the original Units of Study, yet each can also work as a self-contained stand-alone unit, offering you a chance to try on the experience of teaching with the Units before moving to the complete series.
In addition to her work on the Units of Study for Teaching Reading and Writing, Lucy Calkins is also the author or coauthor of numerous foundational professional books including The Art of Teaching Writing, Writing Pathways: Performance Assessments and Learning Progressions, Grades K–8, Pathways to the Common Core: Accelerating Achievement, One to One: The Art of Conferring with Young Writers, and A Principal’s Guide to Leadership in the Teaching of Writing.