Teacher Professional Development books for kindergarten

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10 Professional Development Books EVERY Teacher Needs

June 12 Deedee 4 min read

When I look at my bookshelves, I have come to a realization… I am a hoarder!  I have so many teacher professional development books… but there are few that have really shaped my thinking about “best practices.”  These are the books that I return to and reread. These are the books that are littered with Post-its and scribbled notes in the margins.  Does your administration want to know the research behind the practices in your classroom?  These books are PACKED with research!10 Teacher Professional Development books for kindergarten and primary teachers.Reading, writing, and math teacher professional development books included.

Writing Professional Development

Teaching writing to emergent writers is my thing!  I sincerely LOVE it, but that was not always the case.  I used to feel overwhelmed and a wee bit paralyzed by the subject.  So… I started reading!

During my years as a literacy coach, we read Scaffolding Young Writers by Linda Dorn and Carla Soffos.  Using this book, we formed our beliefs about writers’ workshop.  This is a fantastic book that addresses writing development for K-3 students.

10 Teacher Professional Development books for kindergarten and primary teachers.Reading, writing, and math teacher professional development books included.

These next two books REALLY are my favorite MUST have books when it comes to teaching young writers to write.  Because it is one thing to think about teaching writing to students who know letters and sounds, but what does it look like when students don’t have transcription skills?  Engaging Young Writers by Matt Glover was written for ME!  Ok… not really, but it sure sounded like it.

10 Teacher Professional Development books for kindergarten and primary teachers.Reading, writing, and math teacher professional development books included.

I could go on and on about In Pictures and In Words by Katie Wood Ray.  In fact I did!  Several years ago, I lead a book study on this VERY book! You will find a TON of mentor text ideas in these posts:

10 Teacher Professional Development books for kindergarten and primary teachers.Reading, writing, and math teacher professional development books included.

After reading these books and adjusting my beliefs about writing, Deanna Jump and I sat down and wrote our BEST selling writers’ workshop units. These units are designed for emergent writers, so they are perfect for kindergarten and first grade.  They take the guess work out of HOW to teach writing.  Each day is planned for you in detail.  All you have to do it TEACH!  You can see these units by clicking HERE.

Reading Instruction Professional Development

Debbie Miller’s books Teaching with Intention and Reading with Meaning are fantastic!

If you are struggling with curriculum that has been handed down to you and you feel it is not meeting the needs of your classroom, Teaching with Intention is the book for you.

Reading with Meaning is simply the gold standard in my opinion.

10 Teacher Professional Development books for kindergarten and primary teachers.Reading, writing, and math teacher professional development books included. 10 Teacher Professional Development books for kindergarten and primary teachers.Reading, writing, and math teacher professional development books included.

Text Dependent Questions by Douglas Fisher and Nancy Frey helped form my thinking around close reading.  This books walks teachers through the process of planning lessons around a particular read aloud.

10 Teacher Professional Development books for kindergarten and primary teachers.Reading, writing, and math teacher professional development books included.

These are the books that we (Deanna Jump and I) used to write our Guiding Readers Series.  We have heard from scores of teachers who have said our series has transformed their classroom.  Teachers report that their students are connecting deeply with texts like never before!  Here is just one teacher’s feedback:

I used “Ice Bear” for my formal observation.  The kids were so ENGAGED!  I had never heard of the book before, but my kids loved it.  I rocked my observation and my principal was so impressed!

Read more about interactive read alouds in THIS post.

Small Group Professional Development

Making the Most of Small Groups by Debbie Diller is a great place to start when you are thinking about small group instruction.  Again, as an instructional coach, we used this book (among others) to guide our professional development.  This is a simple, easy to ready, book that is filled with practical ideas and tips!

10 Teacher Professional Development books for kindergarten and primary teachers.Reading, writing, and math teacher professional development books included.

The Next Step in Guided Reading by Jan Richardson is fantastic.  This would make a sensational whole school book study!

10 Teacher Professional Development books for kindergarten and primary teachers.Reading, writing, and math teacher professional development books included.

These are the books that helped shape my understanding of guided reading.  Small group instruction is not sitting around a table doing “Round Robin” reading… please do not do “Round Robin.”  Small group instruction is about differentiating your lessons to meet the needs of your individual students.  Deanna and I created leveled readers based on the research that has been provided in these two books (among others).  You can see those leveled texts HERE.

I have also created a series of small group activities that are specific to teacher-lead instruction.  You can see those activities HERE.

Math Professional Development

Teaching Student-Centered Mathematics: Developmentally Appropriate Instruction for Grades Pre-K-2 is a MUST.  Besides having the world’s longest title, it is packed with a gazillion “best practices” for teaching math.

10 Teacher Professional Development books for kindergarten and primary teachers.Reading, writing, and math teacher professional development books included.

Math Work Stations by Debbie Diller is phenomenal.  This book offers practical ideas and so you can keep your students practicing math skills independently.  I lead a professional book study on this book. You can read more about that book study by clicking below:

Math Work Stations

10 Teacher Professional Development books for kindergarten and primary teachers.Reading, writing, and math teacher professional development books included.

These two books (among others) helped shape our thinking around our whole group math instruction. You can see the Kindergarten Math Units HERE.  You can see the First Grade Math Units HERE.

I also made thematic math work stations and you can see those HERE.10 Teacher Professional Development books for kindergarten and primary teachers.Reading, writing, and math teacher professional development books included.

 

What are some of your favorite teacher professional development books?

21 Comments

  • Maggie June 12 at 9:36 am

    It makes me happy to see that so own all but one of these! You are spot on with your recommendations!! Great post Deedee!

    • Maggie June 12 at 9:37 am

      That “I”.

    • Deedee June 12 at 9:49 am

      Welcome to the Hoarders Club! 🙂

  • Miss Trayers June 12 at 12:09 pm

    Thank you for sharing those suggestions. Always looking for ways to step up my reading/writing instruction! 🙂

    Not Just Child’s Play

  • Cheryl June 12 at 7:06 pm

    The Next Step Forward comes out next week….

  • Dee June 12 at 7:40 pm

    Thank you, I am always trying to improve my teaching!

    • Deedee June 12 at 8:16 pm

      You are welcome! I feel the same way. I just ordered two more books. It is an illness… I swear!

      • Grace July 14 at 3:31 pm

        Truly!!!!!

      • Grace Toler January 14 at 3:45 pm

        I am “right there with you” Deedee! I have books galore! The sad thing is I forget what I read soon afterwards!? Let’s start a book club and talk about them!

        • Grace Toler January 14 at 3:48 pm

          I have 7 of your 10

        • Deedee January 15 at 3:26 pm

          Ohhh!! I love that idea! Hmmm… where to start? email me and maybe we can get rolling with one!

          [email protected]

          • Terri Izatt May 6 at 7:18 am

            I could use the motivation of a book club! I would love to join one this summer.

  • […] When I look at my bookshelves, I have come to a realization… I am a hoarder! I have so many teacher professional development books… but there are few that have really shaped my thinking about “best practices.” These are the books that I return to and reread. These are the books that are littered with Post-its and scribbled notes in the margins. Does your administration want to know the research behind the practices in your classroom? These books are PACKED with research!  […]

  • Meg Bott June 13 at 9:45 am

    The art of Awareness by Deb Curtis

    It focuses on slowing down and following the children’s lead. It is full of practical examples and exercises to hone our reflection and observation skills.

    This is a central text in the Grant MacEwan University Early Learning and Chil Carr program used in every single on of our courses.

    Also The Girl With the Brown Crayon by Vivian Paley. Very detailed retelling of how an entire kindergarten curriculum can be based in literature through careful observation, reflection, and participation. She follows the works of Leo Leoni as guided by her students.

    • Deedee June 13 at 10:30 am

      Oh my! I am adding those to my growing list of “things I need to read.” They sound fascinating!!! Thank you!!!!

  • Barbara Balius June 14 at 12:52 am

    Great post, DeeDee!

  • […] have been receiving a lot of questions after my last post about my last post on teacher professional development books.  It has been a while since I have done a book study, so how about it?  How about a little book […]

  • monkey go happy June 20 at 7:49 pm

    Great post,Thanks for providing us this great knowledge,Keep it up.

  • Leave a Reply

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    My teaching career allowed me to experience teaching to different age groups and in different classroom environments. My heart belongs to early childhood education and I love working with other teachers who share this same love as me. Read More

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