Coffee Talk, 2.17
Free Poster for National Poetry Month 2009

"The best reading teachers are teachers who read."

I appreciate Donalynn Miller's insights over at The Book Whisperer. She's a sixth-grade language arts and social studies teacher, and blogs about reading. Recently she wrote about the connection with her students.

There are many days when I don’t get it right—my lesson falls flat, my temper is short, or I am too distracted to focus on the child standing in front of me. My students forgive me on those days because I am one of them—a reader. I rarely fail when talking to children about books and why they should read this one. It pleases me when my students consider me an expert whose opinions about books they value; I convince a lot of kids that they are experts because they read, too.

Read the whole post at Miller's Teacher Magazine blog, which is well worth subscribing to. Miller's book The Book Whisperer: Awakening the Inner Reader in Every Child (Jossey-Bass) hits the shelves in March.


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What a wise teacher. Thanks for the book tip. I'm going to email this to a friend and then add it to my TBR pile, too.


Okay, just read that entire link. Fabulous. She's exactly right. Teachers -- and librarians -- can't hear that enough, I think.


Jules, I really look forward to the book. My volunteering as a "reading buddy" has me really interested in what gets kids reading. I see how well first graders respond to books when they really love them; I've seen it repeatedly with Mo W.'s Pigeon books, among others. First graders are so eager to be readers themselves; it's really a joy to see.

Yeah, I know what you mean. We talked about this a lot in grad school, and the subject still intrigues me. What Miller is talking about is common sense stuff, not that she's not brilliant. That's to say: It's sad that such common-sensical notions are considered more underground/unconventional, for lack of better words, in this era of insane standardized testing.

I look forward to that book, too. I'll pass the title on to my former grad school prof.

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