Balanced Literacy Connection

PUSD Initiative - Vol 1 Issue 4 - May 13, 2016

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Dear Literacy Leaders:

Since the completion of the Balanced Literacy Institute, we have had the privilege through school visits and social media to see how each one of you has embraced the goal of igniting a love and culture of reading at your schools.


Teachers and children are engaged in discussions about books. Children are learning how to share books through book commercials. Teachers are gathering for professional development in new leveled book rooms and have had the opportunity to browse these new books. It is exciting to see all of the work you've done to prepare for next year.

Though our work is truly just beginning, you have begun to lay the foundation that we will build on this summer and when we return in the fall. Until then, celebrate the successes. And it is our hope you will find time this summer to cultivate your own reading life, whether that means reading a series you've had your eye on or exploring professional books about literacy. We hope you will have fun wherever your reading journey takes you.

If you think of it, please take photos of yourself "caught reading" this summer so we can include them in the Balanced Literacy Connection at the beginning of the school year. Until then, thank you for investing in this important work and becoming literacy advocates on your school sites.

May your summer be filled with many new book journeys,

~ Helen, Alyson, Jamie, Frances, Debra, Carmela, Ann & Jose

May Balanced Literacy Goals

Let's IGNITE a Love and Culture of Reading By...
  • Supporting teachers and students as they create summer reading plans and goals.
  • Sharing with students and families various free summer reading clubs in the community (check out the public library for more information).
  • Implementing ongoing 'book talks' or 'book commercials' in classrooms and across the school.

Tots, Tweens & Teens Book Fest

Pasadena Unified and Bridge to Books celebrates books and authors with a book fest on Saturday, May 14, at Pasadena High School. There will be 36 authors and illustrators talking about their books and creative processes. Entrance to the event and panels are free. Books will be available for purchase through Once Upon a Time Bookstore. Hope to see you there!
Tots Tweens and Teens 2016
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Shout Outs

Check out how these literacy leaders are building a reading and writing culture at their schools and across PUSD! Please continue to share photos with your coaches or in our shared SMORE folder so we can spotlight your team's Balanced Literacy efforts.

Online Food for Thought

Check out these great blogs for information and ideas to support Balanced Literacy!

Book Trailers: A Great Way to Share Book Commercials with Kids

Pirasaurs! by Josh Funk
Dan Vs. Nature by Don Calame Book Trailer

Books You Won't Want to Miss

Websites & Blogs Worth Following




Columbia University's Teachers College Reading & Writing Project has a collection of classroom videos on Vimeo that take you inside reading and writing workshops at various grade levels. Check them out here: https://vimeo.com/tcrwp/albums

Important Dates

Monday, June 6 to Thursday, June 9, 2016

  • Balanced Literacy Institute for All Elementary Teachers - training option 1 of 2


Monday, July 25 to Friday, July 29, 2016

  • Summer Reading Institute - only for accepted Reading Workshop Project teachers


Monday, August 1 - Thursday, August 4, 2016

  • Balanced Literacy Institute for All Elementary Teachers - training option 2 of 2


Monday, August 1 - Friday, August 5, 2016

  • Summer Writing Institute - only for accepted Writing Workshop Project teachers ~ these teachers must sign up for June Balanced Literacy Institute