Anchorage School District
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Elementary Literacy Support

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Teacher Resources

On this page you will find oodles of resources to help you make the most of your literacy program. Check out the Houghton Mifflin tips in the FAQ section of The Literacy Circle Teacher Resource Page.


Literature Circles

Literature circles guide students to a deeper understanding of what they read through structured discussion and extended written and artistic response. Students can apply what they are learning about reading and writing in literature circles.

Literature Circles Resource Center

West Virgina Dept. of Ed Literature Circle Page



Guided Reading

The teacher guides a small group of students with similar reading abilities in the use of reading skills and strategies.


More information at Instructional Strategies Online


Teaching Reading with Leveled Books at




Teachers match instruction and assessments to individual learners characteristics and needs.


Differentiated Instruction and Assessment from


Differentiation for Gifted Children at Prufrock Press Inc.


The Access Center



Cooperative Learning Structures

Cooperative learning structures give students an opportunity to be actively engaged in their educational experience.


Colorin’ Colorado – ELL and Cooperative Learning


Kagan Cooperative Learning Structures


Cooperative Learning Strategies for teaching Summarizing




“Writing a poem is discovering.”  Robert Frost


Poetry Giggle


The Children's Poetry Archives


The Discovering Poetry Project


The Poetry Zone


Instant poetry forms



Book Lists

Looking for a good book?


Read Alouds from Planet Esme

Beaverton School District Leveled Books Database

Free e-books and more

Caldecott Medal Home Page

Newbery Medal Page


100 Best Books


Books Recommended for Kids by Teachers


Books for Boys






Word Walls

An interactive collection of words used to teach vocabulary, spelling, phonics and more.


Word Walls at ABC Teach

Word Walls at The School Bell

Word Walls at Instructional Strategies Online


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Literacy Centers

Literacy Centers engage students while the teacher works with small reading groups, and reinforce literacy skills (vocabulary, reading, phonics, word study, mechanics).

Literacy Center ideas from Busy Teachers Café



Reciprocal Teaching

The students take turns being “the teacher,” in this learning model for teaching reading strategies.


North Central Regional Educational Laboratory

Video of Reciprocal Teaching in action from Reading Rockets



Graphic Organizers

Visual tools to help organize our thinking.


Houghton Mifflin Graphic Organizers



Author Studies

Find your favorite authors here



Brett, Jan


Carl, Eric

Cleary, Beverly

dePaola, Tomie

DiCamillo, Kate

Dorros, Arthur

Fletcher, Ralph

Floca, Brian

Fox, Mem

Frasier, Debra

Henkes, Kevin

Hoberman, Mary Ann

Katz, Bobbi

Keats, Ezra Jack

Laminack, Lester


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Lin, Grace

Lowry, Lois


McCarthy, Meghan

Numeroff, Laura

Osborne, Mary Pope


Pilkey, Dav

Polacco, Patricia

Prelutsky, Jack

Riordan, Rick

Rowling, J.K.


Simon, Seymour

Snicket, Lemony

Steig, William

Van Allsburg, Chris

Wells, Rosemary

Willems, Mo



Useful Links

Smartboard Lessons on Room 108 Web Site


Every Child A Reader and Writer, professional development videos

Houghton Mifflin

West Virginia Department of Education

Santa Maria-Bonita Reading

Rialto School District

Florida Center for Reading Research (FCRR)

Daily Five


Mandy Gregory’s Teacher Web Site

Education Oasis

ABC Teach

Reading Lady

Beth Newingham's Third Grade Literacy

Into the Book


Literacy Center:  Online Kindergarten Activities


Mrs. Meacham's Teacher Web Site


Christina Bainbridge's Primary Teacher's Web Site


100 Helpful Web Tools for Every Kind of Learner


Student Mini Lesson Slideshows


Practicing School Skills at Home


Frequently asked questions

How do I use the Houghton Mifflin Anthology?

The anthology is used to teach reading skills and strategies, including phonics/decoding, word learning and comprehension strategies.  The teacher models the strategies and skills and leads the class in guided practice using a variety of shared reading techniques including teacher model, partner read, popcorn read, SQRR (Scan, Question, Read, Respond), pyramid read, numbered heads and cloze read.


How do the Leveled Readers fit into my literacy program?

The leveled readers are used during guided reading to practice the skills and strategies introduced in the anthology lesson.  If students are below benchmark in decoding, they should use the phonics readers, instead of the leveled readers to work on phonics/decoding skills and be brought up to grade level.


When do I use the HM student practice books?

The student practice pages include a wide variety of materials. Some of the pages are designed to be used as guided practice, others are designed to be independent work. The pages vary in difficulty, too. Before assigning a page, ask yourself the purpose of the assignment. Is it for review? Extra practice? Assessment? Are the instructions clear, or do you need to guide students through the material? Remember, you do not need to do all or even most of the pages. Pick and choose wisely, according to the abilities and needs of your students.


Instead of using the practice book pages, consider using reading and writing journals, graphic organizers, literature response activities and student projects.


Where do I find out about the Handwriting Without Tears Program?

The ASD Language Arts Department is in charge of the handwriting program.  Here is the HWT website:


Who can give me information about the Kindergarten Profile?

Glen Nielsen, elementary supervisor, is in charge of the ASD Kindergarten Profile program. Inquires can be directed to his office.  Brian Sheridan can provide technical assistance with the ASD assessment database.


Who can answer questions I might have about my classroom literacy program?

Your literacy support teacher is ready, willing and able to help you find the answers to your questions.  The best way to notify your literacy support teacher is through district email. 


Professional Books

Here are a few of the books that inspire us as Literacy Support Teachers. For more good reads, see our Reading and Writing pages.


Small Groups book spacer image Practice with Purpose book spacer image Spaces book

"Making the Most of Small Groups," "Practice with Purpose and Spaces" and "Places" by Debbie Diller.

More about these books »

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Opitz book cover
"Do-Able Differentiation" by Michael F. Opitz and Michael P. Ford

More about this book »

Daily 5 book cover spacer image Cafe book cover

"The Daily 5" and "The Café Book" by Gail Boushey and Joan Moser.

More about these books »


Mastering Mechanics book

"Mastering the Mechanics" by Linda Hoyt and Teresa Therriault

More about this book »