Tag Archives: In the Middle

The Big 5: Ken Lindblom on the Professional Books That Got Him to Where He is Today


Every so often we like to ask our authors about the books that most affected their teaching, the books that served as turning points in their practice or opened their eyes to a new way of approaching their work, thinking about education, or seeing children. In this installment, we bring you the professional book top five of Ken Lindblom, Associate Professor of English and Associate Dean for Academic Programs in the School of Professional Development at Stony Brook University (SUNY), and former high school English teacher. Ken has also served as the editor of English Journal and is on the Executive Board of the Conference on English Education (NCTE). Ken is a co-author of the Heinemann book Making the Journey, fourth edition, which published in the fall of 2016.

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The Big 5: Katie Wood Ray Tells Us About the Five Books that Made a Big Difference in Her Professional Life


Every so often we like to ask our authors about the books that most affected their teaching, the books that served as a turning point in their practice or opened their eyes to a new way of approaching their work, thinking about education, or seeing children. In this first installment, we bring you the professional book top five of Katie Wood Ray, whose professional background includes both elementary and middle school teaching experience and two years as a staff developer at The Reading and Writing Project, Teachers College, Columbia University. She was also the coeditor of the journal Primary Voices K–6, a publication of the National Council of Teachers of English. She has authored and co-authored many titles , including  In Pictures and in WordsWhat You Know by Heart, Already Ready, and About the Authors. Katie spent many years as a professional development presenter, and is currently an Executive Editor of professional books at Heinemann. 

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Nancie Atwell’s Talk With Teach For All – Live-Tweet Archive


On Tuesday, September 29, Nancie Atwell sat down with Wendy Kopp of Teach For All for a discussion on her career, the Global Teacher Prize, and her vision for the future of teaching. Below, check out an archive of the tweets during the conversation.

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Your Heinemann Link Round-Up for the Week!


Welcome to the second entry in a new series on the Heinemann blog! Every week we find around five interesting links for you to take into your much deserved weekend. These links are interviews with educators, posts from our authors' and friends' blogs, and any interesting, newsworthy item from the past seven days. Check back each week for a new round of finds!


At Two Writing Teachers, Tara Smith wrote about a presentation Ralph Fletcher gave called "Making Nonfiction from Scratch: How Can We Give Students the Time, the Tools, and the Vision They Need in Order to Create Authentic Information Writing?"

Ralph began his presentation with a spirited defense of keeping narrative writing at heart of our writing workshops, reminding us that what is remembered is connected to and embedded in story. The elements of surprise and suspense draw us into stories, he said, they keep us on our toes and hold our interest.

—Click through to read "Learning from Ralph Fletcher: Teaching Authentic Information Writing" by Tara Smith at Two Writing Teachers.


Nancie Atwell appeared on PBS NEWSHOUR on Wednesday evening, in a segment called, "'World's best teacher' does not believe in tests and quizzes."

Click through to watch the video clip.


Author Penny Kittle has won the Exemplary Leader Award from CEL and will receive it at the NCTE Annual Convention in Minneapolis!


Teacher ​Jianna Taylor wrote a review of Upstanders: How to Engage Middle School Hearts & Minds with Inquiry by Harvey "Smokey" Daniels and Sara K. Ahmed.

Of all of the professional books I have read, this is the first that felt as if it were written directly for me and the type of teacher I am.  I could see myself as a teacher in the pages, but more than that, I could see a better version of my teacher self in the pages.

Click through to read Jianna's review at Oakland Schools Literacy.


Amy Ludwig VanDerwater finished off an incredible 30-day sing-a-poem project for National Poetry Month. Visit The Poem Farm for more.

Check back next week for more interesting links. Do you write a blog about your experiences in education? Leave a link in the comments below and we'll consider it for future round-ups. Have a great weekend!

View Nancie Atwell’s Interviews with MSNBC, ABC News, People, and The Washington Post

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Heinemann author and Global Teacher Prize winner Nancie Atwell was recently featured on ABC News and People Magazine. See the interview with Nancie below from ABC News and scroll down further for the link to her interview with People Magazine. For more information on Nancie and the newly released third edition of In the Middle, click here.


Read Nancie's interview with People Magazine here: "Winner of $1 Million Global Teacher Prize Donates All to Education."

Read Valarie Strauss' Washington Post story on Nancie and CTL here: "Great books that inspire a love of reading in kids — recommended by kids"

Watch Nancie on MSNBC being interviewed by Melissa Harris-Perry who named Nancie as the foot soldier of the week.

View Heinemann's complete media round-up of Nancie Atwell following her Global Teacher Prize win.

In The Middle: What Will I Find New To The Third Edition?

The most frequently asked question about In the Middle is, “What’s new in the third edition?” The second edition published 17 years ago, so we know a lot is new because Nancie Atwell has continued to innovate since then.

So we challenged ourselves to answer the question. We asked one of our editors to read both the second and third editions side by side, page for page, and report back. In short: In the Middle, Third Edition, more than lives up to the claim of 80% new material. Here’s what fans of the second edition can expect to find new in the third edition:

PART I, Workshop Essentials

  • More how-tos: More minilessons, conferring suggestions, and scheduling and organizational ideas.
  • A deep dive into the Daily Poem: A critical innovation that helps you support close reading, critical skills, and the writer’s craft.
  • More about reading workshop: Nancie puts the writing and reading workshop on even footing as she shows how you can helps kids read 40 books a year.
  • The 12 red flags of writing: You’ll know exactly what to watch for in students’ writing as well how to respond to them.
  • Letter-essays: Nancie replaces her well-known weekly letters with letter-essays that reduce the paper burden on you and create a bridge to expository writing.
  • Handover: Nancie shows you how to release responsibility to writers and, more so than in the previous edition, to readers.
  • Off-the-page writing: A new concept introduced in the third edition is a way of inserting time and reflection into writing.

Part II, Genre Studies

  • New emphasis and minilessons on poetry: A key innovation—Nancie details why poetry has increased in importance in her teaching and why it is the first genre your students should write in.
  • More specificity about memoirs: The third edition provides more craft specifics to teach and more ways for kids to access the language and descriptions of published memoirs.
  • Micro fiction: Another major innovation is replacing short stories with the concentrated power of micro fiction.
  • New details on expository writing: Nancie narrows her focus to four types of expository writing and presents you with more specifics, structures, and examples for each.
  • “Humor and Homage”: A brand new chapter that not only supports improved writing but helps you provide students with experiences in critical/close reading.
  • New student writing samples: All-new samples reflect today’s students and topics.

For more specifics about what’s new, click here [pdf].