Tag Archives: Anna Gratz Cockerille

Reflect, Build, & Design Instructional Plans for Studying Classroom Libraries

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by Anna Gratz Cockerille

In A Guide to the Reading Workshop, Lucy Calkins writes, “Your classroom library holds a lot of power. It sends a strong message to the readers in your classroom, and it should convey that reading is important and that books are to be celebrated, treasured, and enjoyed.” 

Lucy outlines critical tips for organizing classroom libraries, including:  

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Great Ideas for Content Area Literacy Centers for Your Primary Classroom K-2

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Written by Anna Gratz Cockerille

“Education is a natural process carried out by the child and is not acquired by listening to words but by experiences in the environment.”  – Maria Montessori, in The Absorbent Mind

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Studying Reading Process and Development K-3: A TCRWP Twitter Chat

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by Anna Gratz Cockerille 

In Kindergarten and sometimes even in Pre-K, teachers in reading workshop classrooms give several assessments so they can understand what children know about how reading goes (These are available free on The Teachers College Reading and Writing Project website.) They include: 

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Building a Toolkit for Social Justice: Ways to Fire Up the Conversations in Your Classrooms K-8

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by Anna Gratz Cockerille​

Starting at even the youngest ages, students are well aware of social issues. Even before they begin school, they know what is fair and unfair, what it means to take care of each other, and what it means to behave in ways that aren’t socially accepted. Through the elementary school years, students begin to understand the power of social groups as they feel the effects of bullying and cliques. 

In middle school and high school, students begin to care about social issues that exist outside of their school and home environments. Poverty, race, gender, and class become topics of conversation. Students also begin to understand that they can take a stand on issues and that their voices matter. 

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Beyond a Score: On-Demand Writing for Powerful Instruction

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By Anna Gratz Cockerille

When they are motivated, children naturally engage in deep reflection and goal-setting. An example is when they are trying to get better at their favorite sport or video game. They understand exactly where they rank compared to other players. They study other players carefully, trying to emulate their moves. They take in what coaches say, they make small tweaks to improve. They practice, practice, practice. With the right conversations and the right tools, we can teach students to approach their writing with the same level of reflection and goal-setting. 

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Unpacking the Middle School Units of Study: Big Pillars and Hidden Gems

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by Anna Gratz Cockerille

Short class periods. Moving from room to room. Limited space. Adolescent emotions. These are just a few of the challenges middle school students (and teachers) face. To be sure, teaching writing in middle school takes special planning, creativity, and patience. But it can be done, and it can be done well, even with its challenges. 

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