Heinemann author Maggie Beattie Roberts is our guest today on The Heinemann Podcast. I’m sure you think about your favorite teacher from time to time, but what can our memories do to inform our teaching? Heinemann Author Maggie Beattie Roberts thinks we can use these influences to help form teaching archetypes to better our practice.
Maggie Beattie Roberts began her teaching career in the heart of Chicago and then pursued graduate studies as a Literacy Specialist at Teachers College at Columbia University. She worked as a staff developer for the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project for nearly ten years, where she led research and development in digital and media literacy, as well as differentiated methods of teaching. Maggie is currently a national literacy consultant, author and frequent presenter at national conferences. She is the co-author of DIY Literacy, and co-authored several Heinemann Unit of Study books on the teaching of writing.
In their book, DIY Literacy: Teaching Tools for Differentiation, Rigor, and Independence, Kate Roberts, and Maggie Beattie Roberts focus on four main types of tools that teachers can create to support student learning in their classroom:
Micro-Progressions of skills
They go on to show readers how and why to create these tools, how to select the right tools for students, and introduce us to the thinking behind effective tool use. Drawing on inspiration from fellow tool-makers Marjorie Martinelli, Kristi Mraz, Roz Linder and many more, Kate and Maggie lead the charge on the DIY classroom front, showing us not only the why and the how, but giving us the confidence to use the skills we have to do it ourselves.
In this video, Kate and Maggie talk about the four main types of teacher created tools that appear in the book and give us a glimpse into their thinking behind each.
Adapted From DIY Literacy: Teaching Tools for Differentiation, Rigor, and Independence.
by Kate Roberts and Maggie Beattie Roberts
"In our teaching, we have faced impossible moments, those times when our inner teacher voice says, "it can't be done!" Maybe it was that kid we couldn't seem to reach—the one for whom we had tried everything we knew on our own to help but had yet to turn the corner. Or maybe it was a moment after a unit when, even though the unit seemed to go okay, we were depleted and unable to muster great energy for the next unit beginning the following day. "There has to be something to make this easier," we thought."