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September 1, 1995
Vol. 53
No. 1

Resources

National Assessment of Educational Progress Reading Report Card

National Assessment of Educational Progress Reading Report Card: 1995 follow-up reports, Educational Testing Service.
Listening to Children Read Aloud by Gay S. Pinnell and colleagues (Report No. 23-FR-04) and Interviewing Children About Their Literary Experiences by Jay R. Campbell and colleagues (Report No. 23-FR-05) present data about the literacy of 4th graders. Listening to children read aloud and interviewing them emerge as valuable ways for teachers to assess children's reading development, and thereby identify students who may be missing out on important literacy activities. The authors discuss reading habits and practices, implications for reading instruction and assessment, teaching activities, and the role of the library.
Available free of charge from the Educational Testing Service, P.O. Box 6710, Princeton, NJ 08541-6717. (609) 921-9000. 1995. 92 pp. Paperbound.

Research and Professional Resources in Children's Literature

Research and Professional Resources in Children's Literature: Piecing A Patchwork Quilt, edited by Kathy G. Short.
In an effort to shed light on what kids like to read, Short brings together summaries of research published from 1985–1993. In addition to examining reading attitudes and interests, the researchers look at family and preschool literacy, literature-based curriculums, and teaching strategies. They also examine books for children and adolescents in terms of literary merit, as well as trends, issues, and themes (culture, social issues, life cycles, gender). Included are annotated bibliographies of professional journals, books, and papers; children's literature; and a list of organizations.
Available from International Reading Association, 800 Barksdale Rd., P.O. Box 8139, Newark, DE 19714-8139. (800) 336-READ, ext. 266. 1995. 272 pp. Paperbound, $11.

The Kid's Guide to Service Projects

The Kid's Guide to Service Projects, Barbara A. Lewis.
Lewis offers kids ages 10 and up ideas for more than 500 projects—from running errands to working for stronger penalties against graffiti. Accompanied by step-by step instructions, the projects are organized by area of interest—animals, the environment, community development, crime fighting, health, hunger, literacy, and senior citizens. There are simple instructions for preparing flyers, petitions, press releases, public service announcements, and ordinances; and for lobbying and fund-raising.
Available from Free Spirit Publishing Inc., 400 First Ave. North, Suite 616, Minneapolis, MN 55401-1730. (612) 338-2068. 1995. 176 pp. Paperbound, $10.95.

Curriculum for the New Millennium

Curriculum for the New Millennium: Trends Shaping Our Schools, 2nd ed., coedited by Arthur Roberts and Lee Hay.
A team of educators assembled by the Connecticut Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development projects eight trends and what they might mean for teaching and curriculums within the next 15 years. For example: the changing family (schools will increasingly be asked to teach traditional values—hard work, task completion, proper behavior; and will provide surrogate family structures by keeping students together in teams for several years); the age of convenience (parents will expect schools to accommodate their personal calendars, and the year-round school will grow in popularity); information technologies (students will need to be taught “media wisdom” so they can critically process vast amounts of easily accessible information). Also addressed: ethics and values, demographics, work, health, government, globalization, and alternatives to and within public education.
Available from Edward H. Bourque, Executive Director, Connecticut ASCD, 134 Southport Woods Dr., Southport, CT 06490. (203) 256-8998. March 1995. 32 pp. Paperbound, $9 ($8 for 25 or more copies).

A Common Sense Guide to Multiage Practices

A Common Sense Guide to Multiage Practices, Jim Grant and Bob Johnson.
Grant and Johnson firmly believe that “multiage, continuous progress education is a reform that is inevitable and will move us closer to respecting what we know about how children grow and develop.” They look at various classroom configurations—combined grades, multigrade, looping, continuous progress; discuss developmentally appropriate practices; and show us one multiage classroom (ages 6–9) in action.
Published by Teachers' Publishing Group, Columbus, Ohio. Available from Crystal Springs Books, P.O. Box 500, Peterborough, NH 03458. (800) 321-0401. 1994. 124 pp. Paperbound, $16.95.

Building Blocks and Stumbling Blocks

Building Blocks and Stumbling Blocks: Three Case Studies of Shared Decision Making and School Restructuring, Elizabeth Bondy, Karen Kilgore, Dorene Ross, and Rodman Webb.
These four University of Florida educators look at the dynamics of school reform in a county in which the teachers union and school board in 10 pilot schools make joint decisions. The elementary school and two middle schools that the researchers highlight share several features that make for successful renewal, among them: efficient governance structures led by principals who grasp the renewal process; and school cultures that encourage collective problem solving, mutual responsibility, trust, training, and risk taking.
The book also traces the history of education reform, beginning in the early 1980s with teacher organizations and collective bargaining. The group that published the book was created in 1990 to support and document restructuring efforts.
Available from The National Center for Restructuring Education, Schools, and Teaching, Box 110, Teachers College, Columbia University, New York, NY 10027. Fax: (212) 678-4170. June 1994. 88 pp. Paperbound, $8.

National Assessment of Educational Progress Reading Report Card

National Assessment of Educational Progress Reading Report Card: 1995 follow-up reports, Educational Testing Service.
  • At all three grade levels, girls' performance was higher than boys', an advantage that increased as the complexity and difficulty of the question type increased.
  • Fourth graders were better at reading for literary experience than to gain information, 8th graders showed no significant difference between the two, and 12th graders were better at reading to gain information or to perform a task.
The authors also discuss current views on reading literacy instruction and assessment, the use of authentic texts, interactive reading theory, and written vs. oral demonstrations of reading comprehension.
Available free of charge from the Educational Testing Service, P.O. Box 6710, Princeton, NJ 08541-6717. (609) 921-9000. 1995. 194 pp. Paperbound.

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