Laura Candler’s Graphic Organizers for Reading Book

by Laura Candler

Laura Candler's Graphic Organizers for ReadingThis post is a book review of Laura Candler’s Graphic Organizers for Reading: Teaching Tools Aligned with the Common Core. First, here is a link to Laura Candler’s site with more information about this book.  On that page, look for a link to a free sampler printable of the book by scrolling down just a little.

Graphic Organizers for Reading, Teaching Tools Aligned with the Common Core by Laura Candler is the answer for busy teachers who want to balance active teaching with common core requirements in an organized and efficient way. There are many sources of information along these line available online and through district curriculum, but most require intense study and time consuming decision making.  Laura has done the work for teachers and prepared, practical, instantly useful, well thought-out, researched, and field-tested resources for us.  She has such great organization, clarity, and support for busy teachers.  Visually, teachers and students have part of the lesson obvious at a glance, but don’t be deceived as there is great depth to each lesson and graphic organizer, and as you use the book and lessons you and your students will begin to see the brilliance and meaningfulness of the organizers.

Graphic Organizers for Reading, Teaching Tools Aligned with the Common CoreI have taken National Urban Alliance training which helps raise test scores for all children, but especially children from impoverished lives.  They have a heavy focus on their own graphic organizers, as they say children in lives of chaos have a more difficult time organizing their thinking in order to learn.  So I feel graphic organizers are very important in everyone’s education.  At school we don’t always know which students are struggling with economic or emotional upheaval, so it is best to try to help everyone have organized thoughts to allow learning to flourish in our classrooms.

The DAILY 5 and CAFE are also books I’ve read and studied, and certainly they have many great aspects and support for teachers.  However, when you look at a CAFE bulletin board there are categories and words for children to decipher and anchor lessons to remember, which can require constant mini-lessons.  They certainly have good points, although pre-made worksheets aren’t a component.

However, for my money and time, an investment in any of Laura’s books is the best help possible for me and my students.  A bonus is that parents at home can recognize and understand Laura’s printables in addition to seeing a bulletin board at school once in awhile, or listening to a grade-level curriculum meeting.  The printables help bridge home to school and help bring parents into the learning, by providing common ground for students, teachers, and parents. Parents want to understand what their children are doing in school and they want to know about the common core standards, too!

This book includes graphic organizers for every common core standard in grades 2-6, graphic organizers that support reading in the content areas, new ways to use multi-purpose graphic organizers, and a cross reference table of common core standards and which graphic organizers should be used.  There are some examples, suggested books, and mini lessons all included.  Terrific!  This is a wonderful book!

This is a link to my previous post about Laura Candler’s POWER READING WORKSHOP: A Step-by-Step Guide, another wonderful book!

Thank you for reading, Carolyn

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