Sunday, February 3, 2008

Susan Zimmermann revisted

Teaching the Seven Keys to Comprehension - Presented by Susan Zimmermann

Susan opened her session by describing herself as a “born again reader”. She says that there are three things that are universal in good reading classrooms.

  1. An unwavering belief in the capacity and capability of every child who enters the classroom.
  2. Teachers who allow children to fail. Teachers allow children to practice and practice and practice whatever it is they want them to master. In our classrooms we must create an environment of safety where they feel comfortable failing.
  3. Reading quite simply must be a joyful adventure for children.

Ms .Zimmermann continues to explain why these three things are so vital. She says that we must NOT leave any child behind.

During the presentation Susan covered reading cueing systems, with many interesting examples illustrating both the surface structure systems (Grapho-Phonic, Lexical, Syntactic) and the deep surface systems (Semantic, Schematic, Pragmatic). Next it was so exciting to hear Ms. Zimmermann explain “The 7 Keys to Teaching Comprehension”.

What a treat to hear from the author about the very things that our first grade team has determined should drive our instruction throughout the school year. As Susan described the role of the teacher, Michelle and I could list the many colleagues that we are privileged to work and learn with each and every day, who understand and take their role as “Teacher” as the most important job on the planet.

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