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Opinion Blog

Classroom Q&A

With Larry Ferlazzo

In this EdWeek blog, an experiment in knowledge-gathering, Ferlazzo will address readers’ questions on classroom management, ELL instruction, lesson planning, and other issues facing teachers. Send your questions to lferlazzo@epe.org.

Education Opinion

Q & A Collections: Teaching Reading & Writing

By Larry Ferlazzo — August 18, 2015 4 min read

I’ll begin posting new questions and answers in September, and during the summer will be sharing thematic posts bringing together responses on similar topics from the past four years. You can see all those collections from the first three years here.

Today’s theme - the twelfth one in this summer series - is on Teaching Reading & Writing.

Previous updated thematic collections are:

Classroom Management

Student Motivation

Implementing The Common Core

The Best Ways To Begin & End The School Year

Teaching Social Studies

Project-Based Learning

Brain-Based Learning

Using Tech In The Classroom

Parent Engagement In Schools

Teaching English Language Learners

Student Assessment

You can see the list of Teaching Reading & Writing posts following this excerpt from one of them:

From 2014/15

Close Reading Can Be ‘Fun or Awful’

Christopher Lehman, Cris Tovani, Pernille Ripp, Jan Burkins and Kim Yaris contribute their thoughts.

Close Reading Is A ‘Life Skill’

Sonja Cherry-Paul, Dana Johansen, Stephanie Harvey, Julie Goldman, Diana Sisson and Betsy Sisson are the featured guests in this post.

‘Close Reading’ - Part Three


Kimberly Carraway, Katherine S. McKnight, Harvey F. Silver, Amy Benjamin, Nancy Boyles, Rita Platt -- along with readers -- share their ideas.

Teaching Literature Through ‘Choice’ & ‘Practice’

This post features responses from Regie Routman, Katherine S. McKnight and Michael W. Smith.

Literature Can Be a ‘Gateway for Understanding Everything’

Several educators - Nancy Steineke, Sean McComb, Nancy Frey, Doug Fisher, Bill Himmele and Pérsida Himmele - provide responses here.

A Good Reading Lesson Doesn’t ‘Put Standards Before Students’

In this post, guest responses come from educators Cheryl B. Dobbertin, Ilse O’Brien, Katherine S. McKnight and Regie Routman.

From 2013/14

‘Reading Is Intensely Social': An Interview With Jeffrey Wilhelm & Michael Smith

Educators Jeffrey Wilhelm and Michael Smith are co-authors of the new book, Reading Unbound.

Ways To Engage Students in Reading

Jason Flom shares his ideas, as do many readers. I also add an intriguing chart.

Reading Is a ‘Means to Bigger and Better Things’

Educators Kristi Mraz, Marjorie Martinelli, Kathy Barclay and Cindi Rigsbee contribute their thoughts.

Ways to Develop Life-Long Readers

Donalyn Miller, Mark Barnes and Christopher Lehman contribute their responses.

Using the “Fun Factor” To Encourage Student Reading at Home

Read educator/author Nancy Steineke ideas, as well as comments from many readers.

Getting Students to Read at Home by ‘Building a Daily Habit’

Dina Strasser and Ariel Sacks share their thoughts in this post.

Helping Students Develop a Desire To Read At Home

In addition to sharing my own response, you’ll find contributions from two other guests -- educators Donalyn Miller and Myron Dueck.

‘Teachers Know A Lot About Scaffolding’ For Complex Texts

This post includes three joint commentaries from Nancy Frey and Douglas Fisher; Tammy Mulligan and Clare Landrigan; and Aaron Brock and Jody Passanisi.

Teaching Complex Texts Requires ‘Getting To Know Your Students’

Read responses from three educators: Wendi Pillars, Amy Benjamin, and Christopher Lehman.

Writing Instruction & the Common Core - Part Three

This piece features commentaries from Amy Benjamin, Alice Mercer, and from many readers.

Preparing Students To Write Is ‘About Our Own Collaboration’

Heather Wolpert-Gawron, Kathy Glass, and Carol Jago share their ideas.

Developing Student Writers By Letting Them Talk...

This post shares commentaries from educators Mary Tedrow, Ray Salazar and Tanya Baker.

From 2012/13

1. Many Ways English Teachers Can Improve Their Craft

Author/educators Penny Kittle and Carol Jago contribute their responses.

2. “Ten Elements Of Effective Instruction”

This post includes pieces from Jim Burke and David B. Cohen, as well as comments from readers.

3. Many Ways To Help Students Develop Academic Vocabulary

Several educator/authors - Marilee Sprenger; Jane Hill and Kirsten Miller; and Maria Gonzalez - provide guest responses.

4. Celebrating our Students’ Good Writing

This post shares guest responses from three educators: Mary Tedrow, Doug Fisher and Nancy Frey.

5. Helping Our Students Become Better Writers, Part Two

Three educators -- Aimee Buckner, Carolyn Coman and Tanya Baker -- contribute their ideas here.

6. Helping Boys Become Stronger Writers

Educator and author Ralph Fletcher shares his ideas on how we can specifically help boys become stronger writers.

7. A “Napkin Curriculum For Writing”

Author and teacher Barry Lane provides his perspective in this post.

8. Teaching Writing by Respecting Student Ideas

Teachers Renee Moore and Ray Salazar share their contributions, and I add in my suggestions.

From 2011/12

1. Ways To Help Our Students Become Better Readers

Stephen Krashen and Richard Allington share their ideas on helping students develop a love for reading.

2. More Ways to Help Our Students Become Better Readers - Choice & Access

Teacher/Authors Regie Routman, Laura Robb, and Kylene Beers contribute their thoughts in this installment of the reading series.

3. Ways to Help Our Students Become Better Readers - Part Two

Nancie Atwell and Cris Tovani sent-in their responses for this post.

4.Ways to Help Our Students Become Better Readers - Part Four

This post featured recommendations from Kelly Young (my mentor), Douglas Fisher, Nancy Frey and Carol Jago.

5. Advice From The “Book Whisperer,” Ed Week Readers & Me About Teaching Reading

Donalyn Miller, the “Book Whisperer,” my colleague Dana Dusbiber, and several readers contributed here. I shared my own suggestions, too.

I hope you’ve found this summary useful and, again, keep those questions coming!

The opinions expressed in Classroom Q&A With Larry Ferlazzo are strictly those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.

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