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Michael F Opitz

A former elementary school teacher and reading specialist, Michael Opitz (@MichaelOpitz4) is professor emeritus education of reading at the University of Northern Colorado where he taught undergraduate and graduate courses and supervised doctoral dissertations. He is now a literacy consultant and author well known to individual teachers, instructional leaders, and researchers as the author of numerous professional and curricular resources and through his extensive work in schools nationwide.


Titles with Heinemann

  • Accessible Assessment: How 9 Sensible Techniques Can Power Data-Driven Reading Instruction (2011)
  • Classroom Catalysts: 15 Efficient Practices That Accelerate Readers’ Learning (2014)
  • Comprehension and English Language Learners: 25 Oral Reading Strategies That Cross Proficiency Levels (2009)
  • Do-able Differentiation: Varying Texts, Supports and Groups to Reach Readers (2008)
  • Good-bye Round Robin (1998/2008)
  • Books and Beyond: New Ways to Reach Readers (2006)
  • Listen Hear! 25 Ways to Enhance Listening Comprehension (2005)
  • Reaching Readers: Flexible and Innovative Strategies for Guided Reading (2001)
  • Rhymes and Reasons: Literature and Language Play for Phonological Awareness (2000)

  • Reading Diagnosis and Improvement: Assessment and Instruction, 6th ed. (Allyn & Bacon, 2011)
  • Literacy Lessons to Help Kids Get Fit and Healthy (Scholastic, 2010)
  • Don’t Speed. Read! 12 Steps for Smart and Sensible Fluency Instruction (Scholastic, 2007)
  • Flexible Grouping in Reading (Scholastic, 1998)
  • Literacy Instruction for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Students (IRA, 1998)
  • Getting the Most from Predictable Books (Scholastic, 1995)
  • Learning Centers: Getting Them Started, Keeping Them Going (Scholastic, 1994)


  • Pair-It Extreme (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2010), a supplemental reading program aimed at engaging boys with reading
  • Literacy by Design (Rigby, 2008), a supplemental literacy and RtI program
  • Intervention by Design (Rigby, 2009), an intervention program tailored to children who need additional help with reading
  • Summer Success Reading (Great Source, 2007), a reading program designed to help children who need additional help with reading
  • Afterschool Achiever’s Reading Club (Great Source, 2003)
  • Daybooks, Grades 3–5 (Great Source, 2008, contributing author)

Mike is the author of more than 20 articles in peer-reviewed journals such as:

  • The Reading Teacher
  • Literacy Research and Instruction
  • Reading Horizons

Mike has received more than 15 awards for his teaching, scholarship, and service to professional organizations, including the Fannie Stabenow Award from the Colorado Council of the International Reading Association.


  • Editorial Boards of The Reading Teacher and Reading Horizons
  • Former Chair of IRA’s Teacher Educator Award Committee
  • Numerous committees in CCIRA

Michael Opitz provides on- and off-site professional development through Heinemann Professional Development.

Related PD Offerings

Email if you would like to contact Michael F Opitz directly about professional development support.