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Many students are feeling a lot of momentum this time of year as they’ve become more competent in reading and are advancing through Read Naturally stories and levels more quickly. Be sure to capitalize on their motivation and help them sustain it over winter break. Here are some at-home tools that can help keep your students excited about reading.

Read Naturally founder Candyce Ihnot is blogging again! Last year, after starting a Read Live reading lab in a new school, Candyce wrote a series of blog posts about her experiences. Teachers couldn’t get enough of her helpful tips & tricks, endless wisdom, and relatable stories. Due to popular demand, she is back again this year to share even more Stories From the Lab. In this post, she describes the many benefits of inviting parents and teachers into the reading lab.

Progress monitoring is a key reason why the Read Naturally Strategy is so successful. When students can easily monitor their own progress, they’re motivated to stay focused on the task at hand in order to continue improving. But the self-monitoring of progress by students is only half of the progress-monitoring story in any Read Naturally classroom. Read Naturally teachers must also monitor their students’ progress in order to make the necessary adjustments to help accelerate growth. For this reason, Read Naturally programs include detailed reports and graphs that make tracking growth a breeze for teachers.

If you work with beginning or developing readers, chances are you’ve encountered a student who has difficulty identifying certain lowercase letters. While uppercase letters are more easily distinguished, lowercase letters like b, d, p, and q—which look very similar—tend to cause confusion.

There are certain kids who want to do everything fast. Do you know any? Their inclination to race through the world seems built into their DNA, and it’s not necessarily a bad thing. These kids are often eager to raise their hands, respond to problems, and try new things (not to mention excel in sports like Track & Field). But, as you know, these kids often need to be taught to slow down in their schoolwork. Putting forth their best effort is more important than being the first to finish.

Placement is one of the most important tasks you’ll do as a Read Naturally educator. When a student is working in the correct level of material with an appropriate goal, he or she will be able to make optimal gains in reading. While it is the student’s responsibility to work toward these gains, it is your responsibility to determine the correct level and goal.

The school year is in full swing, which means you’ve already corrected dozens of spelling mistakes in your students’ work. Do you find yourself correcting the same words over and over? How many times a week do you encounter the infamous “alot”? Will your students ever learn to spell the word “probably”?

Welcome back to school! Most Read Naturally users are either preparing to get started with the program or have already begun. We’re here to help you start the school year off on the right foot. Did you know we have detailed outlines on our website for exactly that purpose?

One of my favorite teachers of all time wasn’t my teacher—at least not officially. His name was Teacher Tom, and he was my children’s preschool teacher. Somehow, Teacher Tom was consistently able to engage a classroom full of rambunctious three and four-year-olds in rich, meaningful, and conflict-free learning and play. They took turns, they cleaned up their messes, and even the shy, tentative children were relaxed and confident in his classroom. How did he do it? The other preschool parents and I wondered if he might have superpowers.

The new school year is quickly approaching. Soon the building will be flooded with students both familiar and new. They’ll look taller and their cheeks will be sun-kissed. Some will be apprehensive; some will be raring to go. To ensure a smooth start for all of your students—and, most especially, for you—advance preparations to your classroom and curricula are essential.

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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