Category Archives: Pay It Forward

May 08

Helping Kids Cope During Scary Times by Kris Barr Paquette

As we slowly watched the Covid 19 virus spread across the world until it affected our state, our county, our town we held out hope that by some miracle our little community would go on as normal.  Our state governor called a state of emergency as the virus began to spread through Michigan communities.  She […]

April 26

It’s Time for a #VirtualFieldTrip to the Everywhere Book Fest! by Anna E. Jordan

There were plenty of things about field trips in the “before times” that were difficult. Budgets for busses were minimal, permissions slips never came back, charging for events magnified inequities between students, and chaperones were often hard to find. Even so, we know that authentic experiences with experts inspire children and give classroom learning context. Our […]

March 13

What Makes a Successful Writer? One Author’s Approach to Instilling a Love of Writing by Carmen Oliver

When I was in the 2nd grade, my teacher Mrs. Graham wanted us to write a story. She told us we could write about anything we wanted. Anything that interested us. Anything we liked. Anything we wanted to make up. I found bears fascinating. Growing up in Canada, my family and I camped and hiked […]

March 06

Intentionality: What’s in Your Bookshelf? by Laura Wagenman

73.3% in 2015. 50% in 2018. While I love numbers, these numbers are cause for concern, reflection, most importantly, action. According to the School Library Journal, 50% of books published in 2018 contained characters who are white. When this was released this past June, it made me even more determined to be intentional about the […]

March 02

A Climb Inside the Window: Why We Need Diverse Books by Kelly Stephan

  It was just another Monday night. I picked up my son from basketball practice…my freckle face boy. He stands out on the court, not only for his sweet basketball moves but for his short stature and red hair. These boys on the court are his people, his team, the friends that have his back. […]

January 20

The Power of Listening by Clare Landrigan

I was facilitating a professional development session focused on how to administer a reading assessment.  A fifth-grade student just finished reading the text and I was beginning the part of the assessment in which we discuss the text together.  He seemed a bit nervous with all of the observers, so I tried to calm him […]

January 11

Are Your Striving Readers Helping Others? by Tammy Mulligan

I think we underestimate the power of helping when it comes to teaching striving readers.  In schools, striving readers are typically the ones who receive the most help. Striving readers see multiple teachers for instruction. Striving readers generally have reading buddies who help them figure out the words. And striving readers get lots of support […]

December 06

Top 10 Ways to Be a Literacy Leader by Liz Garden

Whether you are a teacher leader or you are a leader of a school, you have the ability to lead with reading.  All of our students need us to be literacy leaders. We want our students to become readers. We want them to fall in love with reading.  We want them to get excited about […]

November 30

Match.com: Helping Older Students Fall in Love With Reading (Again) by Nicole Kronzer

I teach a lot of twelfth grade. Newly adults, they are often in one of two places: ready to graduate yesterday, or clinging to their swiftly dwindling childhoods. Sometimes, they’re in both of these places on the same day. I love seniors. I love their vulnerability and the way their eagerness for independence clashes against […]

November 16

The Book Matchmaker by Eva Goins

My main goal each year as a teacher is to turn my 8th grade students into readers.  I am a matchmaker of twenty-first century minds that are more interested in connecting to a good hotspot over texts that could quite possibly influence their lives. So how does an educator compete with all of the technological […]