To Be a Boy, To Be a Reader: Engaging Teen and Preteen Boys in Active Literacy

International Reading Assoc.

It’s no secret that boys in the United States are at great risk of failing at school, due in large part to their disinterest in traditional literacy texts. The first edition of To Be a Boy, To Be a Reader shed light on a novel way to boost boys’ motivation to read and increase their achievement in school—and set them on a path of lifelong literacy. And now, the bestselling, oft-cited classic is back in a fully updated second edition, packed with helpful, timely advice and resources for your middle or high school classroom.

To Be a Boy, To Be a Reader centers on engaging boys with books that contain positive male archetypes such as the Pilgrim, Patriarch, King, Healer, Prophet, and Lover. In these pages you get

  • Full descriptions—with literature examples—of all 10 archetypes
  • Classroom vignettes that show how teachers have successfully integrated these books into their teaching
  • A brand-new chapter that focuses on using alternative texts such as graphic novels and comic books
  • Fresh ideas for involving parents and community leaders in boys’ literacy growth
  • An expansive, fully updated young adult literature list, organized by the 10 archetypes
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Additional Information

International Reading Assoc.
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Published on
Apr 28, 2010
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Education / Teaching Methods & Materials / Reading & Phonics
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RTI and the Adolescent Reader focuses exclusively on Response to Intervention (RTI) for literacy at the secondary level. In this accessible guide, William Brozo defines RTI and explains why and how it is considered a viable intervention model for adolescent readers. He analyzes the authentic structural, political, cultural, and teacher and student identity issues unique to secondary schools. He challenges educators to revise RTI so their central aim becomes ensuring that all adolescents are provided with quality instruction and rewarding learning experiences. He shows how to create instruction that is responsive to students to promote genuine literacy growth. Drawing from real secondary school cases demonstrating tiered interventions, RTI and the Adolescent Reader proves how this can work in your school too.

Book Features:

Evidence-based strategies to meet the literacy needs of all secondary students. “RTI in the Real World” documents actual secondary schools employing RTI, with discussion questions for each case study. “Relate to Integrate” poses questions and prompts that foster critical thinking and the application of chapter ideas.

“Bill Brozo has written an honest book that will be useful for anyone considering implementing a response to instruction (RTI) initiative at the high school level. He notes that there is little research on RTI with older students and argues primarily for developing far more effective Tier 1 instructional plans across all content areas. Given that high school grades so closely mirror students’ reading levels any better differentiation of high school instruction will offer huge paybacks in student learning.” 
—Richard L. Allington, University of Tennessee, author of No Quick Fix, The RTI Edition

This book presents an evidence-based framework for understanding the literacy needs of adolescents. The premise is that educators and other critical stakeholders need to understand evidence-based principles in order to develop effective curriculum to meet the needs of diverse learners. Recommendations are provided for middle and secondary education, professional development, teacher education research and policy.

At the center of the book are Eight Guiding Principles developed by the authors through a process that included an extensive review of research and policy literature in literacy and related fields, a comparison of National Standards documents, and visits to the classrooms of 28 middle and high school teachers across the United States. The Principles are broad enough to encompass a variety of contexts and student needs, yet specific enough to offer real support to those involved in program development or policy decisions. They provide an overarching structure that districts and teachers can use to develop site-specific curriculum that is both research-based and designed to meet the needs of the learners for whom they are responsible.

Important Text Features: Organized to help readers understand empirically supported principles of practice that can be used to address literacy concerns in today's schools, each chapter that addresses one of the eight Principles follows a similar format:
* The Principle is presented along with a brief explanation of the research base and a sample of national standards that support it.
* One or more case examples spanning a wide variety of disciplines, grade levels, and local conditions - provide an in-depth look at the Principle in action.
* A well-known adolescent literacy expert offers a response to each case example, giving readers an informed view of the importance of the Principle, how it is enacted in the cases, and examples of other work related to the Principle. Discussion questions are provided that can be used for individual reflection or group discussion.

Principled Practices for Adolescent Literacy is intended as a text for pre-service and in-service upper-elementary, middle and high school literacy methods courses and graduate courses related to adolescent literacy, and as a resource for school district personnel, policymakers and parents.
Graphic novels are an excellent medium to motivate today’s youth to become independent learners and thinkers. This practical guide shows secondary school teachers how to incorporate graphic novels into content area instruction as a tool for meeting the needs of diverse learners and achieving the goals of the Common Core State Standards.  The authors provide instructional guidelines with classroom examples that demonstrate how graphic novels can be used to expand content knowledge and literacy in science, social studies, math, and English/language arts.  Teachers will appreciate the book’s specific suggestions for selecting graphic novels and for employing responsive practices that will build students’ reading, writing, speaking, listening, and media competencies.

“The range and complexity of graphic novels being published right now is simply amazing to me. . . . They are part of what should be a balanced array of texts that all can read, enjoy, and learn from. In this volume, the authors point to this proliferation, as well as the educative potential of graphic novels. After reading its pages, I feel others will agree with me that they have done an excellent job pointing out how graphic novel creators such as Jim Ottaviani and Larry Gonick communicate much about history, science, and mathematics while also making connections to comprehension and thinking skills that accompany both literacy and content-specific learning.”
—From the Foreword by Stergios Botzakis, assistant professor of adolescent literacy in the Theory and Practice in Teacher Education Department at The University of Tennessee, Knoxville

“The authors have set forth on a task I feel long is overdu—connecting the literacy potential of graphic novels to the content areas. This book is a wonderful contribution to the field of content area literacy studies.”
—Michael D. Boatright, assistant professor, Department of English, Western Carolina University

Book Features:

Advice for selecting and evaluating graphic novels. Teaching strategies for each of the four major content domains. Guidance for aligning instruction with the Common Core State Standards. A list of educational graphic novels organized by content area. Study group questions.And more!

William G. Brozo is a professor of literacy in the Graduate School of Education at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, and author of RTI and the Adolescent Reader. Gary Moorman is professor emeritus at Appalachian State University in Boone, North Carolina. Carla K. Meyer is an assistant professor in the Reading Education and Special Education Department at Appalachian State University.

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