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Doug Lemov's field notes

Reflections on teaching, literacy, coaching, and practice.

03.23.15 When a Pre-Call Killed the Mojo- And What to do About it

Recently, our team sat down together to watch footage of a first rate elementary teacher leading a math lesson with her second grade scholars. We observed a lot of great things–and one very unexpected outcome.  Joaquin Hernandez and Colleen Driggs describe it in this guest post: After giving students a few minutes to solve a word problem,…


02.19.15 Elephants and Outsiders: Watch Colleen Driggs Embed Non-Fiction (Video)

I’ve posted a few times recently about a really productive way to get more non-fiction into your classroom and get MUCH more out if it when it’s there.  The idea is called “embedding non-fiction”…  pairing non-fiction articles with fiction texts you are reading. Each text becomes a lens on the other and increases the rate at…


01.29.15 From Reading Reconsidered- Embedding: The Full Story

Posting on embedding non-fiction earlier today made me realize I ought to post something defining the idea more clearly.  Here’s a very early draft of (part of) how Colleen, Erica and I discuss it in Reading Reconsidered. Embedding non-fiction is the process of pairing secondary non-fiction texts (usually non-narrative non-fiction) alongside a primary text in an…


03.12.14 On Planning for Reading, Part 3–Colleen on Maggie’s Close Reading

Lots of teachers out there are struggling with the idea of Close Reading. We’ve heard as much from folks after our reading workshops sometimes. They get that it’s important; they’re in favor of the idea; they’re eager to try it, but they find the planning and execution challenging. Two of the most frequently mentioned issues are…


03.07.14 On Planning for Reading, Part 2–Colleen Driggs on Maggie Johnson

In Part 2 of this slated-for-three-parts series on planning for reading lessons, ace reading teacher Colleen Driggs takes you through the lesson materials of fellow ace Maggie Johnson, explaining what’s so effective and how she does it.  It’s a bit like Georgia O’Keefe taking a few minutes to walk you through what’s so good about Mary…