EVERYONE'S A WINNER WEEK! {Day 2}

This week, Jan. 6th - 10th EVERY follower is a WINNER!
EVERY follower who leaves their e-mail 
in the rafflecopter below, 
will be e-mailed (this weekend) our 
Blog Launch Exclusive Freebie Prize Pack!

Today 4 experienced teachers are sharing insight into...
Hi friends! I'm Wendy from Read With Me ABC.

I'm a first grade teacher turned reading specialist.  While I loved my experience as a classroom teacher, I'm thrilled with my role as a reading specialist.  I spend my workdays doing what I love best, teaching children to read.

I am super excited to be joining my reading friends in this new adventure.  I do hope you will follow us on this journey.  We have so many exciting literacy ideas to share with you!  So let's get started...

An important component of reading instruction is fluency, or the ability to read with speed, accuracy, and proper expression.  We can improve students' ability to read fluently by providing them with opportunities to practice reading sight words for automaticity.  Students can practice sight words individually or in phrases. By practicing sight words in phrases and short sentences, the reader is able to create meaning from the words in context and use expression.

I created an activity, Chat, Chat, Trade: Fluency Phrases, to share with our new Literacy Land followers.

This activity will get students up and moving while practicing their sight word phrases.  It uses words from the First 100 Fry Sight Words and is inspired by the research of Edward Fry and Timothy Rasinski.  I hope you'll enjoy using these fluency phrases with your students!

Hi everyone!  I am Jennie from JD's Rockin' Readers.  I taught First Grade Reading Recovery/Title I Reading for the past 11 years and currently made a change to a regular First Grade teacher.  
I am very excited to be a part of this new literacy blog.  We would love to have you follow us on this journey as we will share our literacy knowledge with you.

I have included a Sight Word Beginning Reader for you today.
This reader is called The Pirate and focuses on the sight words I, see, a, and my.  It is very imperative that beginning readers collect a good number of sight words that they know how to read quickly.  This sight word reader is a little different than most you might see.  Many early readers have a patterned text (which I do agree is a needed skill for beginning readers).  However, what I do find is that many students learn the pattern of the text and then they don't focus on looking at the words.  This reader uses sight words but the pattern changes.  Students learn how to self-monitor their reading right from the start and learn that it is important to look at the words all of the time.  The book also allows students to practice writing the sight word "my" into their own book.  I hope you are able to use this book with your beginning readers!  Happy New Year!

Welcome to Literacy Land! I am Wendy D. from Ms. D’s Literacy Lab.  In the past, I taught Head Start, Pre-Kindergarten, Kindergarten, First Grade and implemented Literacy Coaching within classrooms. Currently, I have been a K-5 Reading Specialist for thirteen years in Boston, MA. I am very excited to be a part of this new literacy blog!

It is very important that beginning readers collect a set of sight words that they can read quickly.   Sight words help a reader to self-monitor and cross-check when they are reading emergent and fluent texts. In addition, a lack of sight words may be a reason that readers plateau and seem to make slow progress. Games are one of the ways that I create fast, fun repetition and learning with my students!
My exclusive freebie for you is Knock Out Those Sight Words!  
(Teacher Directions are included)
Enjoy! Happy New Year!
Fluency: It's Not Just About Speed!

We all know what a fluent reader sounds like. They sound smooth and automatic with the delivery of their words. The speed of their reading changes, speeding up at times and slowing down at the right time. The fluent reader also uses a variety of expressions to convey the feelings of the character. Fluency is all three areas working together to promote the comprehension of the text.

Although it takes all 3 of these components to make a fluent reader, sometimes we get too concentrated on speed. But just teaching a student to read fast or as fast as they can does not help with comprehension. In fact, it can be a deterrent. Students need to know this too.

Model for your students a good example and a poor example of each of the 3 areas of fluency. It helps them to hear and see both good and poor models of each fluency area. Students benefit from concrete examples!

After teaching students about the 3 areas of fluency, give them fluency bookmarks to help them to remember to work on their fluency as they practice reading.


Thank you for visiting our new blogging endeavor, 
Adventures in Literacy Land.
Come back every day this week for more chances 
to win one of the 4 Grand Prizes.

96 comments

  1. I teach in Canberra, Australia. The hardest thing to teach is all the different vowel combinations and their inconsistencies (like 'I read books everyday' and 'I read a book yesterday').
    Good luck on your new venture, and thanks for the giveaway!

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    1. Welcome fellow Aussie educator :) Thanks so much for leaving feedback. Make sure you come back and visit each day as there is a new topic posted each day :) Kylie

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  2. When I did field experience, I would have to help with the students on their reading. The hardest thing for me to teach was the fluency while reading books and also trying to remind them to speak with volume more.
    Congrats on your new adventure and love the giveaway!

    Jasmine H.

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  3. Phonics after coming from the whole language methods was hard. LOVE the new blog!!!!

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  4. Being a teacher of kinders for the first time after twenty years of teaching, I find all of it to be challenging. However, I think reaching those who have zero letter/sound recognition to be the hardest.

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    1. Michelle,
      You might here from me on this issue. I have several students that are at a very basic no letters level so I have been sculpting stuff with lots if repetition and a gradual process to help them.
      Wendy
      Ms Ds Literacy Lab

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  5. Teaching kids the importance of practice! They think if I teach it once on the classroom, they will get it! I remind them...you have to practice AT HOME, too! wendy 1stgradefireworks@gmail.com 1stgradefireworks

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  6. The hardest standard that my students are struggling with this year is in the area of reading fluency. A lot of my students this year can comprehend really well but struggle with fluency. However, they have made many gains since the beginning of the year. :)

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  7. These are great ideas. I have so many students that struggle with reading. Thanks.

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  8. For me the hardest is the fluency standard because I teach special needs students who still have trouble decoding so we hardly ever make it to fluent reading.

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  9. I am looking forward to getting great ideas from this blog. Thanks!

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  10. As a kinder teacher, one of my big challenges is to get my emerging readers to use those sight words as they read or during writing time. They do well "reading" the word wall, but reading in context or using the same words in writing is a challenge for many.

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  11. I am a first year teacher in first grade, so I am finding fluency and expression to be the most difficult right now. My favorite reading book is Rainbow Fish because there is so much that can come from it.

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  12. A novel that I love to teach is Chasing Vermeer. It is a fun mystery that involves math.
    Michele
    Coffee Cups and Lesson Plans

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  13. I have been trying to implement the CAFE method in my class this year, but fluency is the one area that is lacking. It is difficult to do with 6th graders...I can never seem to find the time to listen to the students read to me individually!!! Any advice? BTW my favorite book to teach is Bridge to Terabithia

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    1. Try Reader's Theater or have a poetry jam. There are lots of poetry books with 2 voices or have them section a longer poem into 2 voices.
      Wendy

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  14. I honestly don't have a favorite book to teach. There are so many wonderful books in my collection that I'm still experimenting teaching with different ones.

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    1. Hi there Shanon! Thanks for joining us for this exciting new literacy adventure :)

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  15. I love teaching Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry and I love reading A Christmas Carol. I have a lot of love units from my HS days, but now that I have been banished to Middle School it has been more difficult for me to find units that I LOVE because the feedback I get is so different. Practice makes perfect though, and I look forward to getting some great ideas from y"all!
    Amanda

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    1. I'm Carla from Comprehension Connection, one of the blog contributors. I love talking books, and since I have quite a few years in 4/5 and a son who's an avid reader, I might be able to help you out. I know Erin from I'm Lovin Lit will have ideas too. For MS, I'd recommend Richard Peck, Gary Paulsen, Rick Riordan (bunches of titles), Suzanne Collins(Hunger Games), Gary Schmidt (Wednesday Wars), and Pam Munoz Ryan (Esperanza Rising). Sam enjoyed The Boy in Striped Pajamas I recall. I also think Mockingbird would be a good read for MS. This would be a great blog post/discussion for the future, and I'll make sure to address it when I have an opportunity)

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  16. Fluency is so important in reading and yet after K~1 teachers forget that. Thanks for the reminder information.

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  17. I love teaching all kinds of books and I have favorite activities that go with each one. I loved teaching abstract nouns with Crispin, The Cross of Lead. I love the long list of nonfiction-research activities that complement Tangerine and Ghost Canoe. I love teaching characterization with The Westing Game. I could keep going.

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    1. These are great recommendations for Teaching Texas Teens above. Great suggestions. Carla from Comprehension Connection, one of the blog contributors

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  18. My favorite book to teach is Chrysanthemum. I love that the book focuses on that each child's' name is special and unique just like they are. We complete many activities that focus on why our name is special to us.

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  19. My favorite books to teach would be Where the Red Fern Grows or Fever 1793. I just can't pick one!!!

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    1. Love both of these!!! Carla from Comprehension Connection

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  20. I am a high school English as a Second Language teacher to mainly refugee students, and the most challenging aspect is adapting beginner literacy activities for mature students, while incorporating advanced academic concepts in the content areas. I must add, though that my students are very flexible and interested in learning, so they will go along with almost anything!

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    1. Hi ! I would be interested in hearing more about this as at times I need to adapt beginner literacy activities for intermediate students while balancing the classroom needs. Thanks for joining us ! Wendy D.

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  21. I love to teach Snot Stew by Bill Wallace. The kids really get the bullying message and we get lots of giggles whenever I have to say "snot". Eileen

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  22. Being an elementary teacher, we read SO many books- pictures books, chapter books, non-fiction, biographies.... I really can't just pick one! I love reading any narrative non-fiction or mysteries to my students- they are so engaged and we have a lot of fun with it!

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  23. I don't have a favorite book to teach. I LOVE children's literature and don't know that I'll ever be able to narrow it down to one favorite!

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  24. My favorite book to discuss is Because of Winn-Dixie. There's so much to discuss!!

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    1. One of my favorites too. It is so hard to pick just one book, isn't it??
      Carla from Comprehension Connection

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  25. I love to teach The Best Christmas Pageant Ever.

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  26. The Chocolate Touch is my favorite!

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  27. I can't pick just one book! There's too many. I like The Chocolate Touch and The Magic Finger among so many others.

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  28. My favorite book to teach is The Rough-Faced Girl.

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    1. That is a lovely title Anne. I went through a stage where I was purchasing all the Cinderella picture books from different countries/cultures when I was teaching ESL - it was just fascinating to see all the variations. Thanks for sharing :) Kylie

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  29. Because I teach primary grades,this is a diffiuclt question to answer. I love books by Kevin Henkes, Jan Brett, Dr. Suess and many other authors. My kids love Clifford, Junie B., and many other books. Fortunately, I love to read and so do my children.

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    1. Cecile,
      I agree it is too difficult to choose just one book. I love all the books you've suggested. They are perfect for primary! We are so glad to have you as a follower. :)

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  30. This blog looks great!... My favorite books to teach: "The Westing Game" & "Freak the Mighty"

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    1. Stacey,
      When I taught 6th Grade (8 years ago) we read Freak the Mighty. We ended up culminating the unit with creating board games. My kiddos loved it. By chance, the movie happened to come on during Spring Break that year and about half of my kiddos watched it. I have never seen the movie on TV since. Weird. So glad to have you as a follower!
      Deniece, This Little Piggy Reads

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  31. I love using "Wanted: Dead or Alive- A True Story of Harriet Tubman." Every year my close loves this book.

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  32. My favorite book to teach is Because of Winn-Dixie. Thanks for the giveaway! :)

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  33. Grandfather Tang - I love puzzles and seeing students' creations.

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    1. I love integrating picture books when I teach Math too Evelyn and I do have that title - thanks for sharing :) Kylie

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  34. I can only pick one book? That's so hard when I have so many favorites. One of the ones I truly love to use with my students is Charlotte's Web. Thanks for the freebies!

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    1. JW, we read Charlotte's Web last year and did an entire book study. I even incorporated, STEM into Reading!! Yes, my kiddos loved it. We're happy that you're a new follower.

      Deniece, This Little Piggy Reads

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  35. I read Wonder last year, and have incorporated it into my classroom this year. I LOVE it - there are so many great messages in this book.

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  36. Dead end in Norvelt was my class favorite last year.

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  37. My favorite book to teach is Dogzilla! I love the silly puns!

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  38. Thank you, everyone, for stopping by today! I love seeing all of your fun book ideas! And it is true ~ it is hard to pick just one! Stay tuned tomorrow for some more fun on the blog!

    Andrea
    Reading Toward the Stars

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  39. I don't really have a favorite. I teach MS learning support so I base my choices on those books that appeal to the class I have that year.

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  40. "How Full is Your Bucket for kids" would be a fun one to teach. My son loves it and has read it to his first grade teachers students (He is a second grader and it is a big deal to go back and read to them.).

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    1. I love that book too Cairn and I love bucket filling in the classroom (and also with teachers in the staff room!). It's a great book (actually there are a few different ones around bucket filling - do you have more than one version)? Kylie

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  41. I could not pick a favourite book :)
    I teach Kindergarten (in Brisbane, Australia) and read a book, or maybe two, every single day.
    Congratulations on your new blog!

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    1. Hi there Jenny - thanks so much for visiting our new collaborative blog :) A fellow Brissy educator! Welcome aboard! Kylie

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  42. Hi! I have so many to choose from but one of my all time favorites is "Those Darn Squirrels". Love it!

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    1. Have you checked out the Scaredy Squirrel books? Oh my goodness...hilarious! I am sure Those Darn Squirrels is just like them.
      Carla at Comprehension Connection

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  43. As an Australian teacher with experience in grades 4-7 I love to teach anything by Roald Dahl. Funny, interesting and vivid.

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    1. Hi there Felicity! Great to see so many Aussie teachers visiting our new collaborative blog! Roald Dahl is a big hit for those year levels! I also love "Toad Rage" by Morris Gleitzman for those year levels too - and he's an Aussie :) Kylie

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  44. I haven't actually taught it yet, but I'm looking forward to using WONDER with my 4th graders starting next week! I also love JUNKYARD WARS and BULLY by Patricia Polacco. Both led to wonderful discussions and insight into my classroom.

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    1. I LOVE Junkyard Wars:) My 3rd Graders always loved that book. I was thinking about doing a book study of Wonder. Have you heard of the One and Only Ivan? I want to read that too. Anne, we're glad you're following us!
      Deniece, This Little Piggy Reads

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  45. I love Going Someplace Special, I use it as Mentor Text.

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  46. I love using Deltora Quest by Emily Rodda. The kids love the storyline and the language is amazing. The kids really get hooked into reading through this book.

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  47. I am excited about your new blog and look forward to what you share!

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  48. I am excited about your new blog and look forward to what you share!

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  49. Thanks for all your wonderful comments everyone! Discussing children's books to teach is a topic near and dear to my heart. I can't wait to share ideas with all of you!
    Emily, The Reading Tutor/OG

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  50. I love teaching novels. Lately, my students have been selecting their own novels for reading groups. They like the challenge of earning their way into a "free choice" group and I love watching them have great discussions while selecting their novels. I'm most excited about the group that chose "Birthmarked" for this round. It's been on my to-read list since the beginning of the year.

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  51. I love reading so I'm looking forward to your blog.

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  52. My favorite book to teach is the Bible.

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  53. This looks like a great series to follow.
    I love to teach idioms with the Amelia Bedelia books.

    Charlene/Diamond Mom

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    1. I do love teaching idioms and I also enjoy the Amelia Bedelia series :) Each country/culture has their own unique idioms which can make it very hard for an English as an Additional Language (EAL/ESL) learner! Kylie

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  54. I like to teach using Tacky the penguin series. I own them all!! I get into it and I love him as a character! He is goofy and celebrates being an individual.
    Sam

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  55. There are so many favorite books. I have to pick just one? I love Dr. Seuss. Great for a variety of grades.

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  56. I love Mo Willems and Karma Wilson. They both demonstrate that writers get ideas from the city they live in.

    Marcy
    Searching for Teacher Balance

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  57. I love to teach Freak the Mighty and Where the Red Fern Grows.

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  58. I don't have one favorite book. I teach kindergarten, so I read several fiction and non-fiction books each day. I have a ton (ok, maybe two tons) of books that are pretty much my favorite book at the time that I'm reading that one. :-)

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  59. I don't have one favorite book. I teach kindergarten, so I read several fiction and non-fiction books each day. I have a ton (ok, maybe two tons) of books that are pretty much my favorite book at the time that I'm reading that one. :-)

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  60. I LOVE teaching The Giver to my 8th grader! Thanks for the new blog!

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  61. Another Aussie Teacher here. As a Junior Primary teacher I am constantly reading to my class. Last year my class discovered and loved "Meg and Mog" (reminded me of my childhood!!)
    One aspect our team of Junior Primary Educators has focussed on over the past year is Comprehension - helping the children understand what they are reading and the meaning of the text. I'm looking forward to tomorrow's post :)

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    1. Welcome fellow Aussie educator :) It's really good to see so many Aussies are following our new collaborative blog! Thanks for sharing, Kylie (p.s. deleted previous reply because it had a typo!!!)

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    2. lol I reread my comment after i'd posted it and thought - oh i'm on holidays, that does not read very well :)
      Very excited to start my very first blog journey!!

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  62. Dear Mr. Henshaw. We start our year off with this novel. So much to discuss!

    Susan
    Lopezlandlearners.blogspot.com

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  63. Dear Mr. Henshaw. We start our year off with this novel. So much to discuss!

    Susan
    Lopezlandlearners.blogspot.com

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  64. Dear Mr. Henshaw. We start our year off with this novel. So much to discuss!

    Susan
    Lopezlandlearners.blogspot.com

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  65. I love and enjoy teaching "Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing".

    chief9937@Yahoo.com

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  66. I like using The Magic Treehouse series.

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  67. I love using My Rotten Red Headed Older Brother.

    Rachel

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  68. There are so many! Some books that I've recently been reading and teaching with are Pete the Cat books and No David. Rhyming Dust Bunnies is fun to use to teach as is all of Jan Thomas' books.

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  69. I'm a first year teacher and so far my students have loved reading Holes and The Thief Lord.

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  70. My favorite book to teach? WOW! That's a difficult question to answer, especially after teaching for 33 years. My favorite read aloud book is "Apple Island or the Truth about Teachers" by Douglas Evans (great for teaching figurative language and character development and my favorite book to have students read/discuss is "The Devil's Arithmetic" by Jane Yolan.

    Congratulations on the launch of your new blog!!!!

    The Teacher's Desk 6

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  71. I did not receive my prize pack. bmr549@yahoo.com
    Thank you!

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