Reading and Responding in the Middle Grades: Approaches for All Classrooms

This book focuses on practical, research-based approaches middle-grade teachers can use to help their students hone their reading abilities, learn from what they read, and become increasingly motivated to read and competent in responding to the sophisticated narrative and expository texts they encounter in the middle grades and beyond. The authors, one a leading scholar in children's and adolescent literature and the other a leading scholar in reading education, emphasize the relevance of giving equal attention to both cognitive and affective factors. Through a clear and friendly writing style Lee Galda and Mike Graves carefully analyze and describe the unique characteristics of middle-grade students and their learning, give equal attention to the cognitive-constructivist view of reading familiar to reading educators and the transactional theory and reader response theory familiar to literary scholars. This book is unique in that it encompasses learning to read (comprehension), reading to learn (across the curriculum), and adolescent literature and response. While these areas are entirely compatible, they are not often combined. Major topics, each of which is treated in a chapter, include the middle school learner, motivation and engagement, literature for adolescents, scaffolding students' comprehension, teaching comprehension and study strategies, teaching literature, higher-order thinking and deep understanding, vocabulary instruction, assessment, and classroom organization. Glowing Reviews! I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. My knowledge base was definitely broadened and I found much merit and much to commend. In fact, I made notes in the margins filled with such statements as easy to read, terrific idea, and important insight. ---Maria Ceprano, Buffalo State College The inclusion of ELL issues in the deliberations about teaching are quite useful and appropriate. This book does an excellent job describing ELL students' instructional needs and offering alternative or modified instructional approaches. --Kurtis S. Meredith-University of Northern Iowa. Meet the Authors Lee Galda is Professor of Children's and Adolescent Literature at the University of Minnesota. Her research and development interests focus on literature and its role in motivation and engagement, and reader response. Her recent books include Literature and the Child (6th edition), with Bernice Cullinan, and Language Arts: Learning and Teaching , with Dorothy Strickland and Bernice Cullinan, both published by Wadsworth/Thomson. Michael F. Graves is Professor of Literacy Education at the University of Minnesota. His research and development efforts focus on comprehension instruction and vocabulary learning and instruction. His recent books include Teaching Reading in the 21st Century (4th edition in press, with Connie Juel and Bonnie Graves, Allyn & Bacon) and The Vocabulary Book (2006, Teachers College Press, IRA, and NCTE).