Available Now: Online Mini-Courses, “Getting Started with Units of Study in Reading”

RUoS The Teachers College Reading and Writing Project and Heinemann Publishing is excited to release a free online mini-course for each grade, Kindergarten through Grade 5, designed by Lucy Calkins, to help groups of teachers become oriented to and get started using the brand-new Units of Study in Teaching Reading series. Calkins describes the process of creating these introductory video courses: “My coauthors and I thought hard about the most important advice we can give you as you get started with the units. We’ve overviewed the year, helping you think about whether to teach the units in sequence, and suggesting alternatives that might work for you. We’ve then focused on giving you an overview of the first unit for each grade to help ensure your work with your students is the most productive it can possibly be from Day One.”

The courses, narrated throughout by Calkins and her coauthors, are candid, fast-paced, studded with video clips and images of classrooms, and they contain invitations for you and your colleagues to talk through some of the most important questions. There is a mini-course for each grade level of teachers, and a separate mini-course on Performance Assessments and Learning Progressions for Grades 3–5. “Although I planned each course as approximately an hour-long study session for a group of grade-level colleagues, each can be viewed in smaller chunks of subtopics for maximum flexibility. And although they are designed to allow you to participate with colleagues, you may of course simply participate from your home computer.”

In addition to providing an overview of the year and a close look at Unit One, the mini-courses also examine the upcoming units for each grade level. “My colleagues and I are beside ourselves with delight, knowing that you’re poised to bring these units of study to life this fall, and we want to do everything we can to help you tap into the power of this publication to elevate your students’ learning and your own professional implementations and conversations,” Calkins says. “This Units of Study series is our proudest accomplishment yet, and we want to offer a proper send-off into your classroom, school, district. These introductory courses are a start—we also offer one-day visits to schools, Twitter chats led by co-authors, and an array of conference days that other senior staff and I are leading. All of this should combine to give you the support to experience the full, transformative power of the Units of Study for Teaching Reading.”

You are not required to provide us with your name and your email address—you can simply dip into these courses. But if you are willing to provide us with feedback and if you want to be notified when the courses are available, please register by clicking “subscribe” below.

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