INFORMATION LITERACY: Separating Fact From Fiction

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Teacher friends, if you’ve been overwhelmed by sorting through the amount of information online or have grown frustrated when trying to assess the authenticity of an article, you might be interested in my latest project for Teacher Created Materials. It’s called Information Literacy: Separating Fact from Fiction. In ten chapters, Sara Armstrong and I talk about finding, analyzing, and using information in today’s world. This deals with oldies but goodies like how to use graphic organizers and primary sources, and it incorporates new material such as how to spot fake news and online search tips to save you a Google of time. For educators who wish to blog and produce resources outside of the classroom, it also includes a chapter on copyright and fair use.

From interviews with librarians, instructional technology experts and specialists, the book includes background information to help educators sort through the maze of Internet sites and resources. Even more, there are ready-to-use handouts and activities for students.

If you teach expository or opinion writing, Information Literacy would be a valuable resource for your classroom and professional development. Here are a few sample pages to give you an idea what’s inside:

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Should you read Information Literacy: Separating Fact from Fiction, please let me know your thoughts! I hope you enjoy it! It is available for pre-order now on Amazon here! Or, you can purchase elsewhere on September 1, 2017!

The Crime Gene? No Such Thing.

I have an essay up on today that explores the idea of the crime gene. Take a look at how fear impacted my parenting during my lowest moment, and how gathering courage to face that fear allowed for me to be a better parent and person.


“A week after the birth of my third child, I brought a few cups from the kitchen table to the growing pile of dirty dishes on the counter, too exhausted to actually load them. The C-section and my son Michael’s stay in the NICU had taken its toll, and I could barely function…”

Read the rest of the essay here!

KidLit for Aleppo

I’m participating in #kidlitforAleppo on Twitter through Wed. 12/21. If you make a donation to an organization helping in Aleppo, post an image of your receipt (mark out the identifying details or take a screenshot of any part of the e-receipt that doesn’t show your personal information) to my Tweet here. I will randomly choose a winner on 12/22.

For a background on #kidlitforAleppo, or to see what organizations qualify, click on Dana Alison Levy’s post, “The Stories We Don’t Want to Tell: Aleppo.” (Note: Dana Alison Levy and Rachel Allen came up with the idea)



My Newest Teacher Guide–THE BFF BUCKET LIST by Dee Romito

My newest teacher’s guide is available! This is a resource I created with my company, Authors and Educators, LLC. I hope you enjoy both the book and the guide(s)!

Click below to get a FREE teacher’s guide and/or discussion questions for Dee Romito’s The BFF Bucket List.


Comprehensive Literature Guide

Discussion Questions


Ella and Skyler have been best friends since kindergarten–so close that people smoosh their names together like they’re the same person: EllaandSkyler. SkylerandElla.

But Ella notices the little ways she and Skyler have been slowly drifting apart. And she’s determined to fix things with a fun project she’s sure will bring them closer together—The BFF Bucket List. Skyler is totally on board.

The girls must complete each task on the list together: things like facing their fears, hosting a fancy dinner party, and the biggest of them all—speaking actual words to their respective crushes before the end of summer. But as new friends, epic opportunities, and super-cute boys enter the picture, the challenges on the list aren’t the only ones they face.

And with each girl hiding a big secret that could threaten their entire friendship, will the list–and their BFF status–go bust?

Themes of friendship, challenges, and growing up are woven throughout the book.


Try it Tuesday: Silent Sticky Conferences

What a great idea to establish trust and conversations with your students. And a boost to writing, too! I love this!

Three Teachers Talk

A burning question I seem to repeat year after year is “How do I talk to more of my students one-on-one beginning on the first day of school?”

I know the value of making eye contact with the adolescents who enter my room. I know the importance of making them feel like they belong here — like they are in a place where they can be themselves, a place where they want to learn.

I confer regularly with my students — about their reading lives and their writing lives — but every year it seems to take me a while to get in the groove. You know, get all the procedures introduced and underway, get students interested in books (and sometimes reading itself), learn names, set up our writer’s notebooks and our blogs and all the different bits of technology we use regularly like Google Classroom and Twitter.

I know all…

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News-O-Matic and the Olympics

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Some of you know I write for News-O-Matic, the daily newspaper for kids.

As of 2016, News-O-Matic has 2 million downloads and over a 120,000 daily active readership. It has won several awards, including the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers’ top prize in the Editorial Category for Young Readers. We cover important national and international current events as well as pertinent stories for today’s kids.

I am honored to contribute to this literacy app. If you have or work with kids in K-8, check it out! Many schools use News-O-Matic to teach nonfiction, and many parents have purchased it for their kids to read at home. (You can download a free trial version here or here.) Because we write for kids, our articles are appropriately worded and focused. Plus, you can pick which lexile (reading level) best fits your needs.

Above is one of my recent articles. It features children’s author Jennifer Swanson and her book Super Gear. You can read all about what microscopic science has to do with the Olympics! (If you’d prefer to read it in a pdf, click here.)

I hope you enjoy it!