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Everything Seems to Start Blossoming in May

There are many little ways to enlarge your child’s world. Love of books is the best of all. ~ Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Everything seems to start blossoming in May, whether it’s flowers or summer plans. The school year is winding down. Students and teachers alike are thinking about the warm and sunny days ahead, days […]

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Using “Small Moments” to Teach Writing

It’s almost spring and time to start thinking about planting seeds for a summer garden. In the same way that a tiny seed, properly planted and nurtured, will grow into a big plant, young writers can be taught to use a “ small moment ” from their own lives and develop it into a story. […]

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Bring on the May Flowers…

Spring is the time of year when it is summer in the sun and winter in the shade. ~Charles Dickens Although April is the first full month of spring, we in the midwest typically wait until May to put away our warm clothing. April is a month where we carefully follow weather forecasts, keenly aware how […]

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Independent Reading is an Important Component of Becoming a Fluent Reader

The most critical skill for success in school, or in life for that matter, is the ability to read well. And how do beginning readers become proficient readers? Children learn decoding and comprehension strategies from teacher modeling and guided practice. They practice what they’ve learned during independent reading time. And they only become proficient readers […]

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Jupiter is at Opposition March 8, 2016

Jupiter, the biggest planet in our solar system, is at opposition during March 2016. This means that Jupiter is opposite from the Sun in the sky when seen from Earth. The solar system is lined up so that Jupiter, the Earth, and the Sun form a straight line with the Earth in the middle, on […]

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In Like a Lion…

In the spring I have counted one hundred and thirty-six different kinds of weather inside of four and twenty hours. ~ Mark Twain  March is finally here. Yes, that was a collective sigh of relief you just heard. Daylight is beginning to linger a little longer. Spring is within reach. We are so ready for […]

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Using the Gradual Release of Responsibility Model to Help Struggling Young Readers

February is often the time of year when some young readers begin to slow in their reading progress. The language in the text is becoming harder. There are more unfamiliar words to decode and less picture support. It seems they’re getting stuck on even the easiest high frequency words which makes you wonder if they […]

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Six More Weeks of Winter?

Man in Punxsutawney hotel hallway: Think it’ll be an early spring? Bill Murray as weatherman, Phil Connors (Groundhog Day): Winter, slumbering in the open air, wears on its smiling face a dream… of spring. Ciao. In the book, Danny’s Groundhog Day, Danny searches for a groundhog. He’s looking for answers about his future… simple, practical answers. […]

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Rereading as a Powerful Instructional Tool

Rereading favorite books is a great way for young learners to get back into reading as they return from holiday vacation. While we’re taking stock of everything that’s been learned so far this year, we can reinforce reading knowledge by providing opportunities for students to reread books that were favorites before vacation. Rereading a cherished […]

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And Now We Welcome the New Year

At MaryRuth Books, we love beginning a New Year. We love the optimism… the potential… the feeling that anything is within our reach. But once we get back to work, school, and normal home life, it’s easy to return to the familiarity of our pre-holiday habits. We started talking about this and wondered if maybe […]

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