Read, Talk, Write
35 Lessons That Teach Students to Analyze Fiction and Nonfiction
Foreword by Harvey "Smokey" Daniels
Classroom Activities | Literacy | Literacy, K-12
“This book reminds us why Laura Robb continues to be such an important voice in our field: She looks through kids’ eyes and sees into their futures. Literary conversations don’t just enrich kids days; they offer young people gifts that keep on giving: the ability to take risks, exercise creativity, build empathy, and develop the ability to negotiate.”
—from the foreword by Harvey “Smokey” Daniels
When you get right down to it, literacy comes down to this: read, talk, write. But as every teacher knows, it can be hard for students to see and use these three moves in concert—until now. In Read, Talk, Write, Laura Robb lays out the classroom structures that create the time and space for students to have productive talk and written discourse about texts. With Laura’s guidance you’ll
- Use short texts by Seymour Simon, Kathleen Krull, Priscilla Cummings, and other popular fiction and nonfiction authors to teach students how to analyze and converse about texts
- Incorporate six kinds of talk into your instruction, including turn-and-talk, partner talks, and small-group discussions
- Use the wealth of in-book and online reproducibles to help students facilitate their own comprehension-building discussions
- Select from 35 lessons that address literary elements and devices, text structures, and comprehension strategies, and then use them to launch student-led talk about any text you teach
- Help your readers get in a read-talk-write flow, and know how to move from reading to talking to writing, to bring about deeper thinking
- Achieve high levels of performance around inferring, comparing and contrasting, summarizing and synthesizing, and other key skills by way of classroom conversations that make these advanced levels the norm
"Reading is language, on the same plane as talking and writing. Yet in our pursuit of improving students' comprehension, we sometimes neglect to include enough "talk" and "write" in our instructional plans, Laura Robb understands just what teachers need to get the read-write-talk synergy going in their classrooms, and has done a masterful job of providing us with insight and guidance into making these important connections work for all texts. The result of Read, Talk, Write will be more highly engaged students and deeper levels of comprehension."
"In Read, Talk, Write, Laura Robb helps both novice and experienced teachers create a curriculum of rich conversations that can enhance any reading instructional model. She includes practical resources such as model lessons, checklists, planning guides, and supports for ESL students. Reading this book felt like I was at a common planning meeting with Laura and we were mapping out student conversation lessons together. What is especially helpful is her clear explanations of not just what to teach students, but how the different types of student conversations benefit readers, allowing teachers to choose talk structures that match the students right now."
"How talk develops strategic reading and comprehension, and how it supports composing of all kinds, has been a somewhat neglected topic in both the research realm and in the realm of practical pedagogies. To fill the gap, here comes Laura Robb with Read, Talk, Write. Laura Robb is a great-hearted teacher and person, and in this book she carefully guides all of us who teach how to use specific kinds of procedures and language to develop student engagement, literacies, agency and independent capacity more robustly."
"Read, Talk, Write offers teachers and students a magical tapestry of collaborative thinking and learning around texts. Laura Robb gently, and with great expertise, weaves reading, writing, listening, and speaking into thought-provoking routines. Teachers are going to love the easy-to-follow suggestions for prompts, lessons, and beautiful mentor texts. This highly practical resource brings the famous “easy button” to the world of text response!"
“Laura Robb is a genius. She knows our students. She understands the teachers. She has ideas that are research based, adaptable and make sense. She is all about how to make our students succeed as learners and lovers of literacy.. . .
Laura Robb explains that talk supports recall and comprehension, engages and motivates, becomes a model for ‘in the head’ conversations while engaging with a story, activates ideas for writing about reading, and changes how students think and feel about fiction and nonfiction.. . .This book is about teaching students to have accountable and enriched conversations which lead to productive and engaging writing. Read, Talk, Write is not just about students talking with each other about their reading or writing, but it also teaches students how to engage in conversations that will stimulate their brains to ask purposeful questions. Laura Robb reminds us of the importance of purposeful talk.. . .
The author is careful about structuring her book so that teachers don’t ‘dive in the deep end’ without any support. She first introduces each of the six types of literary conversations and how each type builds upon the other: turn and talk, whole class discussion, partner talk, small group discussions, “in-the-head” discussions, and teacher-student discussions (conferring).. . . In addition, throughout the book she generously provides examples of each type, including a detailed description, how to introduce it, prompts and scaffolds to use, assessments, supports for ELL students, and reproducibles. The “lessons in action” (sample lesson) have a brief explanation of the purpose of the lesson, summary of the text, samples of student talk, and reproducibles.”
Sample Materials & Chapters
Robb_Read, Talk, Write_Chapter 3
Chapter 1: Talking About Texts