I spent this past weekend at the Spring Festival of Children’s Literature at Frostburg State University in Frostburg, MD, meeting children's authors and teachers, and giving two fantastic talks on Fun with Comprehension for Dyslexic and Struggling Readers.
During my session, I spent time working how we teach “sight words,” as these words are far more complex that they first appear. If we, as teachers, have greater knowledge of such words, we are less likely to say “just learn them.” I focused on the difficulties many of these seemingly "simple" words cause struggling readers, and how we can overcome them. As I await full evaluations of my session, I hope it was of great value and teachers will implement some of my strategies in their classrooms.
If I learned anything, I realize I have to be aware of my audience's knowledge. Just as teachers make assumptions of student knowledge, I made assumptions about teachers' knowledge. I often assume all teachers will have an understanding of the “parts of speech,” i.e. nouns, verbs, verbs to be, or pronouns. After this talk, I feel this knowledge may no longer be “common” knowledge.
As always, please feel free to contact me for any reason and I love to read reviews of my book!