Choice Words

In Choice Words, Peter Johnston (2004) discusses how “[language] creates realities and invites identities” (p. 9). In other words, the language we use communicates to others how we see them as individuals and as members of a larger community. In the classroom, language plays an integral role in shaping students’ identity, developing their sense ofContinue reading “Choice Words”

English Orthography

Orthography is a broad term that refers to the spelling, punctuation, spacing, and special features of a language. According to Freeman and Freeman (2014), “One reason that spelling gets so much attention in schools is that English spelling is complex” (p. 149). This is due to its roots in German, French, Latin, and Greek, asContinue reading “English Orthography”

Haim Ginott

I discovered this quote from Haim Ginott hanging in one of the classrooms at SUNY Cortland on my very first day. I took a picture and saved it to my camera roll, and I often reread it to remind myself that everything I do and say matters. Haim Ginott (1922-1973) was child psychologist and teacherContinue reading “Haim Ginott”

Ghost Boys

Ghost Boys written by Jewell Parker Rhodes Rhodes, J.P. (2018). Ghost Boys. Little, Brown and Company.   Category: Middle-grade Contemporary Fiction Summary: Twelve-year-old Jerome is shot and killed by a white police officer while playing with a toy gun. As a ghost, he witnesses the emotional aftermath of his murder and realizes that “only theContinue reading “Ghost Boys”

Children of Blood and Bone

Children of Blood and Bone, written by Tomi Adeyemi Adeyemi, T. (2018). Children of Blood and Bone. Henry Holt and Company. Category: Fantasy novel Summary: Seventeen-year-old Zelie Adebola fights for the rights and preservation of her people and the magic they possess. Theme: Stand up against those who seek to oppress. Generalizations: loyalty, family, authority,Continue reading “Children of Blood and Bone”

Are You Your Favorite Author?

This tweet has been circulating social media; it originated on Twitter, but I saw it on Facebook. Since January 15th, it’s received 162.8K likes and has been shared 14.1K times. Obviously, it struck a chord with many people. Some of the responses include: “I would like to hire her as a life coach” “It’s aContinue reading “Are You Your Favorite Author?”

Vocabulary Instruction: Morphology

Freeman and Freeman discuss the importance of teaching content-related vocabulary and embedding vocabulary instruction in meaningful reading (D. Freeman & Y. Freeman, 2014). Vocabulary instruction is critical for improving students’ reading and comprehension of academic subjects, especially as the complexity and cognitive demands of academic material increases. Palumbo et al. (2015) write about importance ofContinue reading “Vocabulary Instruction: Morphology”

Applying Grice’s Cooperative Principle to Online Discussions

Philosopher of language H. P. Grice (1989) developed a set of rules used to determine the efficacy of conversation between speakers and listeners. Termed Grice’s cooperative principle, these rules center around the Quality, Quantity, Relation, and Manner of an exchange. Quality refers to the extent to which a statement is true and supported by evidence.Continue reading “Applying Grice’s Cooperative Principle to Online Discussions”

Brown Girl Dreaming

Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson Woodson, J. (2016). Brown girl dreaming. Puffin Books. Category: Autobiography or memoir Summary: Written in verse, Brown Girl Dreaming captures author Jacqueline Woodson’s memories of growing up in the south and north, as well as her family and community. Theme: The past shapes who we become. Generalizations: family, community,Continue reading “Brown Girl Dreaming”

Language as a Functional Resource

Teachers must consider many factors when planning and teaching, but two are likely at the forefront. One is pedagogical content knowledge, which refers to teachers’ understanding of specific subject matter. The other is pedagogical language knowledge, which refers to teachers’ awareness of the language students need to master the content (D. Freeman & Y. Freeman,Continue reading “Language as a Functional Resource”