simplicity is a benevolent but jealous taskmaster,
I have found that educators yearn to be told something like this: There will be no more initiatives-at least for a time. Instead, we will focus only on what will have an immediate and dramatic impact on learning in your classrooms: ensuring the implementation of a common, content-rich curriculum; good lessons; and plenty of meaningful literacy activities (such as close reading, writing, and discussion) across the curriculum.
These programs and reading series are the fruit of an intellectually exhausted literacy industry that lost its way long ago, even as we mutely accepted its misguided agenda - to complicate reading and literacy so that we will purchase its programs and materials.
The research we do at the local level - collaboratively - is what makes formal, outside research work. Outside research cannot be installed like a car part - it has to be fitted, adjusted, and refined for the school contexts we workd in.
We must begin where we are and move forward immediately by starting small and capitalizing on what's at hand.
In a research - poor context, isolated experience replaces professional knowledge as the dominant influence on how teachers teach.
Collaboration allows teachers to capture each other's fund of collective intelligence.
The number of books students read...is among the best indicators of student reading development.
worksheets - the archenemy of abundant, purposeful reading (and discussion and writing).
Nostalgia is a seductive liar.
What gets measured (and clearly defined) does get done.
In a healthy system, there is no blame.
Reforms often fail because politics favors symbols over substance.
When we unnecessarily elongate the process of "learning to read," we postpone "reading to learn learning itself - by years.
Learning, without any opportunities to share what we've learned, is a little like cooking for ourselves; we do it, but we probably won't do it as well.
School improvement is not a mystery. Incremental, even dramatic improvement is not only possible but probable under the right conditions.
Things get done only if the data we gather can inform and inspire those in a position to make a difference.