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Professional Development>Off-Site PD

Small Group Instruction: Starting the Year with Intention and Power / A Virtual Full-Day Workshop

Presented by Gabe Ortiz, Jennifer Serravallo and Molly Feeney Wood

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Date and Time

One full-day workshop from 9:30am to 4:30pm Eastern Time (ET).

  • Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Please note that this virtual full-day workshop is scheduled for Eastern Time (ET). If you are in a different time zone, please plan your schedule accordingly.


Drawing from Jennifer Serravallo's most recent publications about reading and writing teaching methods—A Teacher's Guide to Reading Conferences and Teaching Writing in Small Groups—and referencing them throughout the day, this workshop will show you how just a few minutes of purposeful, responsive teaching can have a big impact on your students. This workshop will emphasize essential practices for optimizing both conferring and small groups in reading and writing. These instructional frameworks will help you value each child's language and literacy practices, develop relationships with your students, teach with efficiency, improve independence, and more. Between engaging videos and Jen's ability to break down complex concepts into actionable, doable steps, you will be ready to try out her ideas right away. Jen will be joined by two of her colleagues to provide grade-level-focused breakouts to further differentiate participants' experiences.

Learning Objectives

  • Working with small groups, and principles of effective small group instruction
  • Using goals and skill progressions to understand what students need as readers and writers, and to group students efficiently
  • One-on-one conferring in reading and writing
  • Utilizing varying levels of scaffolding in small groups (i.e. shared writing, inquiry groups)
  • Goal-setting and reflection groups in reading and writing
  • Partnerships and clubs in reading and writing

About the Presenters

Jennifer Serravallo is the author of The New York Times' bestselling The Reading Strategies Book, as well many other popular Heinemann professional books and resources such as The Writing Strategies Book; Understanding Texts & Readers; and A Teacher's Guide to Reading Conferences. Her strategies books have also been translated into French, Chinese, and Spanish. Her newest book is Teaching Writing in Small Groups. Jen is an experienced online educator who has been leading webinars and full-day online workshops for more than a decade. She also created two on-demand online courses called Strategies in Action and Teaching Reading in Small Groups.

Jen began her career in education as a NYC public school teacher and later joined the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project at Columbia University. She holds a BA from Vassar College and an MA from Teachers College, where she has also taught graduate and undergraduate classes.

Learn more about Jen and her work at, on Twitter @jserravallo, on Instagram @jenniferserravallo, and by joining The Reading and Writing Strategies Facebook Community.

Gabe Ortiz is a proud father of three, a solo theatre artist, a television host on PBS, a teacher, a literacy coach, and the co-founder and vice principal of a Title 1 charter school in Florida. With over twenty years of teaching and administrative experience, he has worked with all types of learners in grades 6-12, from ESE and ELL to Gifted. He serves as a coach and mentor for new teachers and has led professional development for educators on literacy strategies, the reading and writing workshop, classroom management, and instructional methods that propel student learning. Gabe has known Jennifer Serravallo for fifteen years as a friend and mentor.

Molly Feeney Wood is an alumna of both Cornell University and Teachers College Columbia University, and was a NYC elementary teacher for several years before focusing her work exclusively on literacy. Molly works closely with Jennifer Serravallo as a member of her team of consultants and as a freelance writer. She wrote the research whitepaper for Complete Comprehension, collaborated with Jen on three book-based study guides, and is the primary developer of additional assessment texts for Complete Comprehension. She is also one of the primary administrators of The Reading and Writing Strategies Facebook Group.

Who Should Attend?

Classroom teachers of grades K-8, literacy coaches, reading and language arts specialists, curriculum coordinators, and administrators.

Special 2021 Tuition Fee

The cost of this virtual full-day workshop is $125.00 per person. Tuition also includes access to the recorded workshop for 60 days.

Related Book

To support your learning in this workshop, we highly recommend Teaching Writing in Small Groups; A Teacher's Guide to Reading Conferences; The Reading Strategies Book; and The Writing Strategies Book.


Registrants will receive multiple emails from Heinemann, including enrollment confirmation, which also serves as your tuition receipt and contains some basic instructions. If you have not received your confirmation email within 48 hours of your registration, please contact us at or 800-541-2086, ext. 1151. Approximately two days prior to the event date you will receive an email with the PD event's Zoom link and log-in instructions.

We highly recommend you test your computer readiness by clicking on this link.

If your computer needs any software upgrades, Zoom will walk you through the updates.

Note: We encourage group participation; however, we require that each person be registered and provide a unique email address.

Registration Form

Our Registration Form is now standardized to be used for any Heinemann PD Services open-enrollment event. Download our new PD Event Registration Form here.

Upcoming Dates & Locations

10/27/2021 - 9:30am-4:30pm ET, Online

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Availability: Available When: 10/27/2021 Where:
Virtual Workshop

9:30am-4:30pm ET, Online

2020-21 Heinemann PD Catalog-Journal
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