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Evan Robb Blog

How Poetry Changed Nicholas' Life
By Lois Letchford Living in Brisbane, Australia, my six-year-old son, Nicholas, failed first grade. The effects of going to school showed themselves through his quietness, his bitten fingernails, and the daily wetting of his pants. His teacher shouted at him for his slowness, his withdrawal, and his inability to follow the “simplest instruct...
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Independent Reading Always Matters
By Laura Robb Most schools had twenty-four hours to close down. There wasn't time to consider checking out books for students or ensuring each child had a computer or handheld device before leaving the building. During the sheltering-in period, no one could enter a school. Closed. For. Safety. The first goal: provide breakfasts and lunches ...
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Remote Learning and The Principle of School Culture
America and the world are experiencing a time of significant change, a time of great challenges. Educators, with little to no warning, have had to transition learning and instruction to an online environment for millions of children. In tandem with shifting learning and teaching to the online world, we also face the challenge of moving our schoo...
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Connecting Matters When We Work Alone
By Laura Robb Teachers, school leaders, parents, and children are facing many challenges after states shut down schools to keep everyone safe during the COVID-19 pandemic. The saying, "Necessity is the mother of invention," has transformed educators, parents, and students into the pioneers of remote learning for primary, intermediate, mi...
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Reading IS the Best Intervention
by Laura Robb Each year, education publishers, promote programs that offer guarantees for boosting reading scores and transforming striving readers into students who read well and widely. These programs require total fidelity from teachers if students are to show progress on assessments. The problem is in order to show progress, most program...
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The Fearlessness of Squirrels
By Lester Laminack One morning at breakfast I noticed Steve, with coffee mug in midair, staring through the windows into the woods behind our house. I sat quietly watching him for a moment. Then, without shifting his gaze, he spoke aloud. "I'm so impressed by the fearlessness of squirrels. They just run to the end of the branch and leap w...
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There's Power in the Reflective Reader and Writer
By Cameron Carter As teachers, we make thousands of decisions a day. We often reflect on these decisions and wonder, "Was the decision I made the right one?"; or "How could I have done things differently?"; We continually question ourselves in order to grow. Just as we model what we teach to students, it is imperative to model how to be ...
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Helping Students Find Their Voice In A World That Really Needs Them
By Gary Armida As an English Teacher, I believe that the single most important thing we can do for our students is to arm them with the skills to use their voice to make a difference in the world. It is difficult in today's world where kids are constantly being told that they are too addicted to their technology, they are lazy, and they are...
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Teaching Reading is an Art as well as a Science
Timothy Rasinski, Ph.D. Kent State University "It is the supreme art of the teacher to awaken joy in creative expression and knowledge."; Albert Einstein "I would teach children music, physics, and philosophy; but most importantly music, for the patterns in music and all the arts are the keys to learning."; Plato "Art has the me...
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The Literacy Principle
To develop students' reading proficiency and motivation to read, we need to make daily teacher read alouds, instructional and independent reading, and writing about reading the core of ELA classes. There is no quick fix for the reading challenges faced by many schools, but we live in a time when the allure of a quick fix can be very strong. M...
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