professornana (professornana) wrote,

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Achieving balance

I love Paul Thomas' blog post about balanced literacy. He says much of what I did but, as always, more eloquently. In the post (here:, he cites a definition of balanced literacy from 25 years ago. Instead of a formulaic definition like so many of those "pillar" folks or CCSS, there is no prescription for percentages of this or that. This is not a recipe in a cookbook. We are not dealing with inert ingredients. We are teaching children.

While we have the food/cooking metaphor going, I am thinking about Food Network. I love watching cooking shows. I am not a chef nor do I aspire to be one. However, I do love to watch, gather ideas, and creating my own dishes. I operate much the same way as a teacher. As I put together a reading list or a syllabus, I am pulling in from many different resources. When I taught middle school I found my own version of the workshop (and before I even knew what it was called as my teaching proceeded Atwell's IN THE MIDDLE) by some years.

So this renewal of the battle over balance is such a waste of time. We know what works. BOOKS and TIME and CHOICE are a good place to begin.
Tags: autonomy, balance, literacy
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