We Have News!

We made a book! DIY Literacy: Teaching Tools for Differentiation, Rigor, and Independence, is coming out in April 2016 through the ever wonderful Heinemann Publishing.

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DIY Literacy is written to be your loudest cheerleader and helpful tour guide as you embrace your inner Pinterest to create (and use) tools your kids need to become more independent and engaged learners. When we work with our students, we often sense that they could do a little more, reach a little higher, push themselves a little harder if they only had some help. It is in these moments we crave the right tool, chart or visual for our kids.

We search Pinterest, we scour the internet, we scan through pictures of slides from the latest PD session, but sometimes we aren't totally sure (or totally confident in) how to make our own. We hope that DIY Literacy can help.

DIY Literacy carries the spirit of the handwritten note you still have from passing your best friend in the hallway in high school, the homemade valentine from your son, the quilt passed down from your great-grandmother. It's about the personalized touch; it's about being playful in our teaching while reaching toward academic excellence; it's about being imperfect in the most perfect ways.

All books stand of the shoulders of colleagues, mentors, and kids, and this book might especially do so. We would not be talking about tools without the groundbreaking work of our friends Marjorie Martinelli and Kristi Mraz in their books Smarter Charts K-2 and Smarter Charts for Math, Science, and Social Studies. Our mentor LucyCalkins and colleagues Brooke Geller and Ali Marron at the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project have pushed and nurtured our thinking on this topic (as well as many others!). We feel proud to stand with these educators and are grateful for their inspiration and guidance.

We hope you have as much fun with this book as we had writing it. We can't wait to see what you make, what problems you solve, and how you DIY the literacy in your schools!

Love, Kate & Maggie