1st Edition

Starting Strong Evidence-Based Early Literacy Practices

    Starting Strong: Evidence-Based Early Literacy Practices shows teachers how to use four proven instructional approaches-;standards based, evidenced based, assessment based, and student based-;to improve their teaching practice in all areas of early literacy.Authors Katrin Blamey and Katherine Beauchat draw on their years of experience and early literacy expertise to guide you in figuring out what to teach and how to find the most instructionally sound method to teach it. They help you determine the instructional needs of your classroom and take full advantage of what you know about your students so you can engage them in learning.With chapters on oral language, vocabulary, phonological awareness, word recognition, comprehension, and writing skills, this comprehensive book explains each skill and provides research-based strategies for targeting each area. Supported by evidence-based research and aligned to key tenets of the Common Core, the book also includes classroom-tested activities and children's literature suggestions for each area of literacy.Starting Strong is an essential resource that any early literacy teacher or coach using a balanced literacy approach can use to build a solid foundation for their students.

    Chapter 1: Early Literacy Targets; Chapter 2: Developing Oral Language; Chapter 3: Fostering Word Knowledge; Chapter 4: Learning the Alphabetic Code and Phonological Awareness; Chapter 5: Practicing Word Recognition and Fluency; Chapter 6: Developing Comprehension; Chapter 7: Supporting Writing; Chapter 8: Putting It All Together


    Katherine A. Beauchat, EdD, is an associate professor and early elementary education program coordinator at York College of Pennsylvania, where she teaches undergraduate and graduate classes in literacy education. Her teaching and research interests include preservice teacher preparation and professional development for early childhood educators in the areas of literacy and language instruction.
    Dr. Katrin Blamey currently works as an assistant professor and chair of the Early Childhood and Elementary Education Program in the Education Department at DeSales University. She teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in education, supervises student teachers, and serves as the chapter counselor for Kappa Delta Pi.

    Every classroom teacher needs a copy of Starting Strong: Evidence-Based Early Literacy Practices by Katrin Blamey and Katherine Beauchat. This text describes in clear language the literacy skills each child needs and does an outstanding job of connecting those skills to both research and classroom practices. Starting Strong is written so teachers will feel both able and excited to implement effective literacy instruction. By describing each literacy concept in detail through sidebars, charts, and classroom vignettes, the authors ensure the concepts are well understood. Teachers can spend their energy putting these ideas in place in the classroom quickly and easily thanks to the inclusion of appropriate songs, texts, websites, apps, and assessments. This text empowers teachers to promote a classroom where all children will develop the foundation they need to become skilled readers and writers. 
    Kimberly Kode Sutton, Ph.D.
    Assistant Professor of Education
    Special Education Program Coordinator
    Department of Education
    York College of Pennsylvania Starting Strong: Evidence-Based Early Literacy Practices demonstrates how to use four different instructional approaches - standards, evidence, assessment and student based - to best advantage, and pairs different instructional choices and their indicators to early literacy efforts.
    Chapters discuss how children build vocabulary and how a teacher's integrated approach can encourage it, offering an array of strategies that cover word recognition, comprehension, and language-building exercises and techniques.
    A wealth of charts and black and white photos throughout support the evidence-based research and its applications, making for a solid reference filled with literacy strategies and approaches that early education teachers will want to consider.
    - Donovan's Literary Service Blamey and Beauchat draw from their personal experiences, conversations with educational professionals, and extensive research to provide a comprehensive resource for preservice or practicing early childhood teachers.
    The authors outline the following four principles of instruction and discuss these principles throughout the text: (1) standards-based instruction, (2) evidence-based instruction, (3) assessment-based instruction, and (4) student-based instruction.  There are chapters that are dedicated to each of the following skills needed for children to develop into successful readers and writers: oral language, word knowledge, alphabetic code and phonological awareness, word recognition and fluency, comprehension, and writing.  Each chapter addressing a skill follows a consistent format that includes a description of the literacy skill, research-based strategies to target the skill, classroom vignettes, book suggestions, meaningful technology integration tips, homework and routine activities, and informal and formal assessment techniques.  The book includes an appendix that is chock-full of practical ready-to-use classroom resources. 
    As a former public school teacher and administrator, this book tempts me to want to go back into the classroom to hone my instruction by using the suggestions provided.  Additionally, if I were still a practicing administrator, I would want the pre-kindergarten thru fourth grade teachers in my building to read this book as part of a professional learning community.  I plan to use Blamey and Beauchat’s research and strategies found in this book in my current position, working with pre-service teacher candidates at an Institute of Higher Education.
    This text is written in a clear, concise manner and provides engaging, research-based, ready-to-use ideas from cover-to-cover.  I highly recommend this resource to any early childhood educators seeking to develop and improve their craft.
    Reviewed by Amy S. Glusco, Director of Field Services in the Department of Education at York College of Pennsylvania
      Starting Strong: Evidence Based Early Literacy Practices shows readers how to apply four different instructional approaches (standards, evidence, assessment and student based) to teachings and early literacy efforts, and offers chapter designed to take each skill and pair it with concrete, tested strategies for teaching. From developing comprehension and practicing word recognition to supporting different types of genre writing formats and applying assessment principles throughout the curriculum, Starting Strong is a powerful survey recommended for teachers of grades Pre-K to 3, and comes from two professors of early childhood and education who impart the basics of the latest research results.
    California Bookwatch: November 2016
    James A. Cox, Editor-in-Chief
    Diane Donovan, Editor
    Midwest Book Review