That Workshop Book: New Systems and Structures for Classrooms That Read, Write, and Think

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9780325011929: That Workshop Book: New Systems and Structures for Classrooms That Read, Write, and Think

For teachers who feel alone with the challenges they face, this is the book for you. For instructional coaches who are stuck and unsure where to lead, this book will show the way. It will help you work through the tricky parts, negotiate the roadblocks and think through to the future.   - Cris Tovani   Twenty-five years after Donald Graves popularized workshop teaching, the concept is widely implemented but not always deeply understood. That Workshop Book changes all that. It shows a new generation of teachers how the systems, structures, routines, and rituals that support successful workshops combine with thinking, planning, and conferring to drive students' growth, inform assessment and instruction, and increase teacher's professional satisfaction. And it shows those already using the workshop how to increase its instructional power by seeing its big ideas and its component parts in fresh, dynamic ways.   In That Workshop Book, Samantha Bennett, a veteran instructional coach, takes you on a tour of six classrooms from first grade through eighth grade to see the techniques and thought processes master teachers use to make their workshops work. In each class she offers tangible evidence of these teachers' practices, demonstrating how they listen to students and use that information to build lessons that propel children into deeper thinking. She documents these teachers' moves for you with:

  • classroom observations in the form of coaching emails from Bennett to each with commentary that highlights the important practices seen in each workshop
  • transcripts of minilessons, worktimes, and debriefs
  • specific, explicit reflection by each teacher about their workshop
  • examples of student work produced in the workshop and over time
  • student reflections on their development as readers, writers, thinkers, and learners.
You'll come to understand firsthand how the setup of the workshop allows students the breathing room to think deeply about ideas, topics, and resources. You'll also see how it creates a framework within which you can not only listen in as children express what they learn but also think deeply yourself about how best to use the information you gather for subsequent instruction. Bennett even demonstrates how the workshop can be flexible enough to fit any learning situation and how to solve common problems as they arise.   Benefit from the wisdom of one of the country's foremost staff developers. Step inside workshop classrooms where teachers and students work side by side - where students develop literacy skills through a combination of doing what readers and writers do and purposeful, sensitive interactions with their teacher. Visit workshops where teachers learn about their students, use careful one-to-one assessment to inform their teaching, and reflect on their own practice as well. Then enter the best workshop classroom of all - the one you'll be ready and excited to launch when you read That Workshop Book.

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About the Author:

Samantha Bennett is the author or coauthor of four Heinemann resources: "Kids with Grit" and "Adolescent Reading RX," courses on the Heinemann Digital Campus; Comprehension Going Forward; and That Workshop Book. Sam is the former instructional coach at the Rocky Mountain School of Expeditionary Learning. Previously she was a staff developer with the Denver-based Public Education and Business Coalition, a middle school social studies teacher, a curriculum-technology integration specialist, a district literacy specialist, an adjunct professor at the University of Colorado at Denver, and lab-facilitator for Cris Tovani. She works closely with teachers at her school and across the country to help them tap into the energy to teach and learn. Sam is branching into systems-level work and helping districts set up a variety of coaching and professional development structures to support teachers, including the Lab Model pioneered by the PEBC. Sam is currently researching and writing about giving students access to power in the world through the creation of meaningful work in school. She gets her energy from her husband Maurice and their three sons - Charlie, Theo, and Augie.

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