A new session of each course opens each month, allowing you to enroll whenever your busy schedule permits!
How does it work? Once a session starts, two lessons will be released each week, for the six-week duration of your course. You will have access to all previously released lessons until the course ends.
Keep in mind that the interactive discussion area for each lesson automatically closes 2 weeks after each lesson is released, so you’re encouraged to complete each lesson within two weeks of its release.
The Final Exam will be released on the same day as the last lesson. Once the Final Exam has been released, you will have 2 weeks plus 10 days to complete the Final and finish any remaining lessons in your course. No further extensions can be provided beyond these 10 days.
Lesson 01 - Building a Balanced Literary Framework
Have you ever wished you had a good way to reach your struggling readers? If so, you're probably ready to discover the secret that thousands of teachers are already using to transform their reading instruction: differentiated instruction combined with guided reading. We'll take our first look at it in this lesson, and I'll explain how blending these techniques will help you build a balanced literary framework that helps your students negotiate a variety of texts with success.
Lesson 02 - Getting to Know Your Readers
The first step in helping your students is getting to know who they are and how their minds work. In this lesson, you'll learn how to evaluate your students' readiness, interests, learning profiles, and social elements. Then you can use this information to drive meaningful, focused instruction that will help them see reading as a pleasure rather than a chore.
Lesson 03 - Planning Assessments
Assessment is at the heart of differentiated instruction because you have to know where your students are before you take them somewhere new. In today's lesson, learn how to plan quality pre-, ongoing, and summative assessments that will give you a clear picture of student learning. The best part of assessing students at multiple intervals is that you can tell what is working and what isn't, adjusting teaching strategies as you go.
Lesson 04 - Grouping Students
In this lesson, we'll discuss flexible groups, which are a mainstay in the differentiated classroom because they allow you to combine students for different reasons on different days. Sometimes you'll combine students based on interests and other times based on readiness or learning profile. However you use flexible groups, you'll appreciate the way this technique lets you accommodate a diversity of students.
Lesson 05 - Selecting Texts
When it comes to selecting the texts you'll teach, there are literally thousands of options. However, you can narrow them down considerably by understanding the criteria of good fiction and nonfiction texts. You'll be picking the right texts the first time after we finish this lesson.
Lesson 06 - Framing Your Before Reading
Did you know that a lot of the learning process hinges on what you do to prepare students before they actually start reading? That's what we'll discuss in this lesson. It's easy to just introduce a text and let students have at it, but if you plan the time before reading with activities that build anticipation and ground the text in prior learning, you'll be amazed by the results.
Lesson 07 - Reading the Text
How students read a text is a highly personal matter, but in the classroom, you have to direct reading to get the greatest results. In this lesson, you'll learn how to teach students the right way to read, to comprehend what they've just read, and to make inferences. The ultimate goal is helping your students have truly meaningful interactions with the text, and I've got just the tricks to help you through.
Lesson 08 - Navigating the After Reading Framework
Does learning end when students put a book down? I hope not! The time to really help students process the text and extend their learning in new avenues is after students finish reading and have the chance to start thinking for themselves. Today, we'll go over the after-reading framework, where you'll teach students to turn information into ideas as they go beyond the text and into the world.
Lesson 09 - Tiering With Ease
If you think of your classroom as a ladder, you'll realize that you have a lot of students on a lot of different rungs. In today's lesson, we'll explore tiering, which is a concept that helps you separate students based on their readiness, interests, or learning profiles. The trick is doing so without making students feel like they're more or less competent than others. Are you eager for the secrets? You'll master them in no time!
Lesson 10 - Anchoring Your Students to Extra Learning
What do you do with those extra 10 or 15 minutes at the end of a lesson or a school day? An increasingly popular idea is to anchor your students to the material they've learned by extending learning in new avenues. You can do this with games, writing prompts, or any number of other fun, creative activities. We'll explore lots of great ideas in today's lesson.
Lesson 11 - Crafting Independent Reading Projects
Your ultimate goal with the balanced literary framework is to create independent readers who are confident and capable of negotiating new texts with ease. In this lesson, you'll learn the basics of curriculum compacting, learning contracts, and individual projects, strategies to help your students transition to independence. You'll be amazed by how well students learn when they work more independently.
Lesson 12 - Putting the Puzzle Together
We'll finish up the course in this lesson by discussing the foundation that you build for classroom learning. Your attitude is everything. (That almost bears repeating!) Beyond that, you need to be able to encourage struggling readers and help parents extend the learning at home. Once your foundation is strong, you'll notice that both students and parents take the initiative to build positive reading experiences.