This year’s theme for the 52nd Annual Conference of the Virginia State Reading Association (VSRA) is “Unlocking the Treasures of Literacy.” From March 14–16 Stenhouse authors are bringing their treasures in the form of expertise on literacy instruction that will leave you feeling energized to go back to your classroom and start using fresh, new ideas! Take a look at who is presenting this year, and don’t miss out on these dynamic speakers!
- 9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. SESSION “Patterns of Power: Where Reading, Writing, and Grammar Meet” Meaning is made when reading and writing crash together in the conventions of language. Where do concept formation and mentor texts fit in? Come discover brain-based, practical ways to use the reading and writing connection to teach grammar and editing in a way that enhances composition and comprehension.
- 12:30 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. SESSION “I’ve Never Written So Much!” How Mentor Texts Inspire and Nurture Writers” Children’s author and professional book writer Jeff Anderson shares how to make writing happen in your classroom. You can’t make students write, but you can inspire them to do so. Discover and explore a few sure-fire mentor texts to get students writing as well as a few strategies from his book 10 Things Every Writer Needs to Know along the way. Jeff is also the middle grade author of the popular Zack Delacruz series.
- 3:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. SESSION “Revision Decisions: Using Nonfiction Texts to Teach Grammar and Writing Through Revision” How do young writers decide what to revise? How do we shepherd them through this process of discovering, thinking, risking, and changing? We give them a vision of what is possible with mentor texts, then use these readings to move their writing forward, one option at a time. Grammar and style are rich ground for teaching revision. Merging craft and mechanics helps students craft sentences while learning voice, detail, and sentence fluency.
- 1:45 p.m. – 2:45 p.m. SIGNING: Pre-function space for Norfolk Ballroom Go to the Stenhouse booth to pick a copy of Jeff’s book, head over to the Center Stage get it signed, and have a chat!
- 9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. SESSION: “Preventing Misguided Reading – The Next Generation of Guided Reading K–5” Engage in an exercise that will re-acquaint you with the gradual release of responsibility and get you thinking about how it applies to guided reading. Jan and Kim introduce helpful tips and pointers for dealing with some of the tricky parts of guided reading, such as selecting texts, grouping students, and helping students when they plateau. Gain a new vision for guided reading, plus many practical ideas for planning and implementing this important instructional strategy in your classroom.
- 12:30 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. SESSION “Who’s Doing the Work – Unteaching Learned Helplessness K–5” Examine your instruction—could there be times you are doing the work for students, creating dependency and interfering with student growth? Learn how to make simple adjustments to your instruction that lead to powerful shifts in student engagement and empower students to persevere in becoming better readers. Jan and Kim share practical ways to get students “unstuck” by shifting the language of reading instruction, adjusting conventional prompts, and reframing scaffolding.
- 9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. SESSION: “Real Revision” In this session, author and educator Kate Messner lifts the curtain on her multifaceted and messy revision process, sharing everything from marked-up manuscripts to the charts, lists, and timelines she uses when she's working through a project. She'll also share strategies for getting student writers excited about rewriting, by setting the stage for the work that's yet to come, providing clear-cut steps for revision, and teaching students how to evaluate their own texts and critique for one another.
- 10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. SESSION: “General Session: Magical Mentors” Because so many of our students live in homes where reading and writing aren't a part of everyday life, providing strong mentors in the classroom can have a transformative effect on literacy. Author and educator Kate Messner explores the power of mentors that go beyond the traditional Albus Dumbledores of the world to focus on mentor texts, author connections, and teacher leadership in living a literate life.
- 1:45 p.m. – 2:45 p.m. SIGNING: on the Center Stage in the Exhibit Hall Norfolk Ballroom Go to the Stenhouse booth to pick a copy of Kate’s book, head over to the Center Stage get it signed, and have a chat!
- 9:45 a.m. – 11:15 a.m. SESSION: “Teaching Vocabulary So Kids Will Beg for More!” In this workshop, Brenda demonstrates how to develop creative, flexible vocabulary instruction that improves students' word knowledge and confidence, enhances classroom community, and increases achievement. Teachers of grades K–6, special education students, and English learners will learn how to weave vocabulary into each school day using multisensory instruction that includes music, art, literature, movement, games, drama, writing, test-taking skills, and technology.
- 1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. SESSION: “Creating Word Memories: Academic Vocabulary Development in Grades 5–9” Research shows that vocabulary development is key to comprehension and achievement in all disciplines, yet many young adolescents lack adequate academic vocabulary knowledge. In this hands-on, minds-on workshop, participants use music, art, drama, movement, games, and smartphone technology to explore vocabulary instruction and assessment that meets the developmental needs of students in grades 5-9.
- 2:45 p.m. – 3:15 p.m. SIGNING: on the Center Stage in the Exhibit Hall Norfolk Ballroom Go to the Stenhouse booth to pick a copy of Brenda’s book, head over to the Center Stage get it signed, and have a chat!
- 1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. SESSION: “The High Value and High Rewards of Small Group Sessions in Writing Workshop” There’s one of you and 20 – most likely more – of them! Therefore, small-group strategy lessons are an excellent way to differentiate instruction while maximizing your time. Learn the fundamentals to making small-group sessions work in your writing workshop so that you can meet your students’ needs in highly individualized ways.
- 2:45 p.m. – 3:15 p.m. SIGNING: on the Center Stage in the Exhibit Hall Norfolk Ballroom Go to the Stenhouse booth to pick a copy of Stacey’s book, head over to the Center Stage get it signed, and have a chat!