From the Field: Message Time Plus & Building Reading Skills

This article is the first of an ongoing series entitled From the Field. Short, inspiring and heart-warming classroom anecdotes contributed by our professional developers as they work in classrooms across the country. Names of teachers and students have been changed. In the beginning of the school year, little Julie was a new kindergartner in Ms. Smith’s classroom. Julie was always …

Teacher Family Communication

Three Tech Tools You Should be Using to Improve Family Engagement

For every teacher, a new school year is often accompanied by new goals: to build a positive classroom culture, to introduce new skills and concepts to your class, and to increase student achievement or test scores, to just name a few. With so many pressing goals to juggle, it can be easy to let other important goals fall behind… such …

Computer Adaptive Testing

Computer Adaptive Testing – What is it?

This article is part 1 of 2, in the next article explore the advantages and disadvantages through the lens of students and teachers. All education stakeholders want a return on investment, but the methods used to measure successful learning vary widely. Student assessments are not always streamlined across schools or even classrooms due to a myriad of challenges, which can include …

Camden Student Writing

Camden Teacher Discusses Transformation Through CLI

Gina Post, a bilingual 2nd-grade teacher at Sumner Elementary School in Camden, N.J. talks to the Office of Innovation and Improvement in the U.S. Department of Education to discusses her work with the Children’s Literacy Initiative (CLI). CLI is a Philadelphia-based organization that supports teachers focused on early literacy. In 2010, CLI won a $21.7 million Investing in Innovation (i3) Validation grant, …

In Praise of Pre-K

The first few years of a child’s life are critical; a child’s brain grows to 90% of its adult size by age five, and from 3 to 4 years of age, children show rapid growth in literacy. Preschool has been shown to give children a head start in their development; children in preschool have vocabulary scores that are 31% higher than children who do not attend.

What is Data Driven Instruction?

“Data driven instruction…” is something we have been hearing for a long time. But what does that really mean in the everyday life of a teacher and his/her classroom? In this age of testing, it is often difficult to keep the notion of using data to make decisions about what is being taught.

Small Changes Your School Can Make to Improve Family Engagement

As educators, we all know that one of the most important ways that we can help children achieve academic and social success is to form strong and collaborative partnerships with their families. Taking the teacher/parent relationship beyond back to school nights and report card conferences can help build strong home-school connections for kids. Having a strong home-school connection leads children to see learning in a more positive light, which prompts them to work harder and actually enjoy school more.

How Starting Small Can Lead to Something Big

Newark Student ReadingA few weeks ago, AIR Institute Fellow and chief scientist for literacy, Terry Salinger, wrote a guest blog for CLI explaining how the preliminary results for CLI’s i3 funded Model Classroom Project stand out in the field of early reading interventions.

Our Favorite Books to Give and Get This Holiday

The holidays are fast approaching, and parents and teachers alike are already preparing kids for winter break. It’s important to make sure young readers keep practicing their skills, even when they’re not in school. One of the best ways parents can get children excited about reading is with new books!