On December 9, 2020, teachers and leaders received the gift of story when awarding winner author and educator, Lester Laminack, them in a conversation about the power of interactive read-alouds to support reading, writing, and social emotional learning for students.
228 participants hung on his trademark conversational style while Lester reminded them of the transformational power of story for students, particularly during these unprecedented times. As a teacher, “I do not have the right to think for you,” Lester commented about allowing students to ask questions about texts. “I think it’s time that we stop asking questions at the end of the story, [instead], let’s say what does this make you want to ask,” said Lester.
This inquiry is at the heart of the Cobb Commitment of Balanced Literacy Instruction, where teachers facilitate student thinking and learning engagement.
Throughout his time, Lester also encouraged teachers to use daily read-alouds to support social emotional learning and connection. Books should be “mirrors, windows, and sliding glass doors for students,” said Lester. “Children should be able to connect their worlds and lives to the books that are in our classrooms.”
Cobb ELA is committed to supporting teachers and leaders with daily read-alouds and diverse texts that support, not only reading, speaking, listening, and writing, but the social emotional learning and health of students.
Elizabeth Cobia, Supervisor
English Language Arts