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February is Black History Month, a celebration of the achievements of Black Americans. It began as Negro History Week in 1926, when Carter G. Woodson, a Black historian, was instrumental in founding an organization that promoted the achievements of Black Americans. A week of celebrations, performances, and lectures grew into a monthlong opportunity to honor famous Black Americans and their contributions to American society.  

In my fourth-grade classroom, I sometimes felt like a circus ringmaster, trying to manage multiple groups of students at different ability levels while making sure that all 24 students were engaged in a productive activity. Anyone who has stepped inside a classroom has seen the evidence of...

Most parents of toddlers don’t understand how their children learn to read; when I sat and read to my children, I took for granted that they would someday magically be able to read on their own. It wasn’t until I began teaching struggling readers that I appreciated how complex and challenging learning to read is for many students. Many of my students got stuck reading individual words, and they became frustrated with reading. These students—and many students in our schools today—benefit from direct, explicit instruction in pairing letters and letter combinations with sounds, also known as phonics. Becoming automatic in reading individual words frees up the mental energy necessary for readers to make sense of texts. And, since 87% of English words are either completely decodable or have just one exception, teaching beginning readers to decode automatically gives them a large bank of known words.

Is it possible to teach prosody, or do students simply learn it naturally? Tim Shanahan, a leader of the National Reading Panel and former first grade teacher, believes that evidence supports direct teaching of prosody as part of fluency.

Our development team has been working hard to make Read Live more accessible and flexible for you and your students. Here are some of the important updates that have been released in the last couple of months.

Ready or not, school is starting soon. For many teachers, that means you’re just getting used to waking up later, feeling rested, and hopefully enjoying some travel. But in the back of your mind you’re also thinking about your classroom, your students, and your lesson plans.

Make Your Student a STAR!

Read Naturally Star of the Month​Share your student’s success story—nominate him or her for our Star of the Month award. Win a Barnes & Noble gift card for the student and a Read Naturally gift certificate for your class!

pointer Submit a Star-of-the-Month entry

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