You have to start somewhere! So, I suggest that you start with Reading Rockets. To me, Reading Rockets should be a one of your – “go to” – websites. It is helpful for everyone involved with teaching a child to read – teacher, parent, reading specialist, librarian, or principal. All of us have important roles in supporting the literacy lives of children. Reading Rockets enables us to fulfill those roles. Visit Reading Rockets and Get Growing!
▪ Teaching Reading: Classroom Strategies
Reading Rockets’ library provides information on print awareness, phonological awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, comprehension, and writing. You will find guide sheets and videos of teachers modeling a reading strategy. In addition, examples of student work and suggestions for how to help a student are shared.
▪ Children’s Books and Authors: Nonfiction for Kids
As a major user of nonfiction text in my teaching, I welcome the focus on nonfiction text. Young children want to know about the real world and this section honors children’s curiosity. Here you will find recommended nonfiction books and tips on how to get the most out of reading nonfiction.
▪ Webcasts for Professional Development
Teachers, like our students, need multiple modes of instruction – that can happen at different times of the day! This webcast series helps fulfill this need. They also provide recommended readings and discussion questions.
▪ Themed Book Lists: Inviting Readers
Maria Salvadore, children’s literature expert, provides almost 200 lists of books arranged by themes. These books are for children up to age 9 and focus on new titles. Here you can find books about Amazing Women, Winter Olympics, Around the World, and Dog Days just to name a few. This is one of my favorite sections of Reading Rockets as I use essential questions and thematic units when I teach. These book lists are good starting points for gathering resources for my students.
▪ First Year Teacher Self Study Course: Getting Started as a Reading Teacher
Although it is geared toward a novice teacher, I encourage all literacy teachers to “take” this course. There are 10 modules centering on phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and text comprehension. Once again, Reading Rockets provides us with opportunities to learn from literacy experts and see teachers modeling strategies and techniques in their classrooms.