Teaching Literacy in First Grade

Diane Lapp, James Flood, Kelly Johnson, and Maria Nichols

May 4, 2005
ISBN 9781593851828
Price: $75.00
244 Pages
Size: 7" x 10"
May 5, 2005
ISBN 9781593851811
Price: $30.00
244 Pages
Size: 7" x 10"

First grade is a year of important new experiences for students and teachers alike. Some students will arrive knowing how to read, others will know a few letters of the alphabet, and most will be somewhere in between. Including dozens of reproducibles, this book guides first-grade teachers in the many decisions they face about how to orchestrate effective, appropriate, and engaging instruction. A special strength of the book is the authors' deep understanding of the oral language base of literacy learning—both reading and writing—and their expertise in differentiating instruction for English language learners.

“This teacher-friendly book lays out the elements necessary to create a well-balanced classroom where children's reading, speaking, and writing can thrive. Great book lists, school-to-home letters, easy-to-manage assessment charts, and well-defined, research-based routines will help new and seasoned teachers create a literacy-rich classroom. If first-grade teachers are going to read only one professional book on literacy this year, this should be the one.”

—Catherine Kuhns, MEd, National Board Certified Teacher (Early Childhood), Country Hills Elementary School, Coral Springs, Florida

“This is just the resource new primary teachers are looking for. The teacher-friendly text and authentic examples make research-based practices come alive. From up-to-date information on workshop models and differentiated instruction and assessment, to tried-and-true room arrangements, Teaching Literacy in First Grade has something for everyone!”

—Nancy Frey, PhD, School of Teacher Education, San Diego State University

“This book provides first-time first-grade teachers with explicit suggestions and guidance for developing a comprehensive literacy program. The many vignettes help teachers see how literacy instruction is delivered in academically rich, culturally diverse classrooms. I especially appreciated the chapter on home-school connections.”

—Billie Enz, PhD, Division of Curriculum and Instruction, Arizona State University

Table of Contents

1. Where Do I Begin?: Getting to Know Your Students, Your Classroom, and the Curriculum

2. Understanding How Children Learn to Read Written Language

3. Supporting First-Grade Writing

4. Exciting Day 1: Instruction Begins

5. Differentiating Instruction: Using Assessment Information Wisely

6. Grouping for Differentiated Instruction and Classroom Management

7. Supporting Oral Language Development

8. Teaching English Language Learners

9. How Does the Year Continue?

10. You Can't Do This Alone: The Home-School Connection

About the Authors

Diane Lapp, EdD, is Distinguished Professor of Education in the Department of Teacher Education at San Diego State University. She has taught elementary, middle, and high school and serves as Director of Learning at Health Sciences High and Middle College. Her research and instruction focus on issues related to struggling readers and writers who live in economically deprived urban settings, and their families and teachers. Widely published, Dr. Lapp has received the Outstanding Teacher Educator of the Year Award from the International Literacy Association, among other honors, and is a member of both the International Reading Hall of Fame and the California Reading Hall of Fame.

James Flood, PhD, is Distinguished Research Professor of Language and Literacy at San Diego State University (SDSU); has taught in preschool, elementary, and secondary schools; and has been a language arts supervisor and vice principal. He was a Fulbright scholar at the University of Lisbon in Portugal and the President of the National Reading Conference. Dr. Flood has chaired and cochaired many committees of the International Reading Association (IRA), National Council of Teachers of English, National Council of Researchers in English, and National Reading Conference. Currently Dr. Flood teaches graduate courses at SDSU. He has coauthored and edited many articles, columns, handbooks, and children's materials on reading and language arts. The recipient of many awards for his teaching and research, Dr. Flood is the coeditor of The California Reader and a member of the board of directors of the IRA.

Kelly Moore, PhD, is a literacy resource teacher in the San Diego Unified School District, where she teaches at a large urban elementary school that has formed a unique collaboration with a middle school, high school, and San Diego State University. Within this partnership, Dr. Moore collaborates with teachers from all grade levels on literacy staff development, preservice education, and beginning teacher support. Her primary interest is the assessment–instruction connection in early literacy classrooms. Her recently completed dissertation focused on teachers' effectiveness at planning diagnostic instruction. She was awarded the Constance McCullough Research Award by the California Reading Association for this study. Through her continued research, writing, and teaching, Dr. Moore hopes to promote teacher education and future research in the area of early literacy.

Maria Nichols, MA, is a literacy staff developer in the San Diego Unified School District. An elementary school teacher for 16 years and a National Board Certified teacher, Ms. Nichols now supports teachers at all grade levels in urban elementary schools as they strengthen their content knowledge and instructional practice. She has worked as a demonstration and resource teacher in an elementary professional development site and has led workshops nationwide on literacy content and instruction. Ms. Nichols received the Outstanding Achievement in Literacy Award from the Greater San Diego Reading Council of the California Reading Association in 1998 and the Distinguished Elementary Educator of 2002 Award from the San Diego Chapter of Phi Delta Kappa. Her current focus is on classroom environments and instructional design that encourage students of all ages to use talk as a tool for developing comprehension.


First-grade teachers, staff developers, reading specialists, and literacy coaches; students in early childhood education and literacy education.

Course Use

Serves as a supplemental text in early literacy methods courses.