Relevant Research

Friday, February 26, 2016


Want to learn more about the free resources available through TSR Online? Join us for one of our Roadshow events! Contact your Education Service Center if you're interested in joining us!

  • March 4, San Angelo, ESC 15
  • March 8, Fort Worth, ESC 11
  • March 23, Beaumont, ESC 5
  • March 29, Victoria, ESC 3
  • April 6, Dallas, ESC 10
  • April 8, Corpus Christi, ESC 2
  • April 14, Midland, ESC 18
  • April 15, Lubbock, ESC 17
  • April 20, Wichita Falls, ESC 9
  • April 27, San Antonio, ESC 20

Get excited for the TSR Institute! Registration will open on April 27 for TSR Comprehensive participants. It will open for the public on May 4. Learn more about this year's conference at our new Institute website! Interested in presenting? Submit a presenter proposal! Proposals are due April 13.

Want to learn more about how to use your CIRCLE Progress Monitoring classroom data? Join us for a webinar on March 10 from 4-5 p.m.! This session will explore in depth the purpose of progress monitoring, identifying reports generated from the C-PM tool and learning how to help teachers analyze their student data. Register here!

Do you have friends who used to be in TSR? Former participants (sites and teachers) can officially sign up for TSR Online for free. Visit our website for more information

Want to learn more about working with infants and toddlers? Check out our Infant, Toddler, and Three-Year-Old Early Learning Guidelines and Training. They're available for free on the CLI website.

TSR Comprehensive participants -  Middle-of-Year Progress Monitoring has completed for Phase II. Observables are due by March 15. 

Coaches - COT and CEC reports are due March 14. 

BEECH Rosters are due February 29.


CLI Engage Website

Texas School Ready Website

Children's Learning Institute Website

Infant, Toddler, and Three-Year-Old Early Learning Guidelines

Texas Prekindergarten Guidelines

Texas Early Childhood Professional Development System (TECPDS)

Choose to Read!

Planning a Read Aloud can be an involved procedure, starting with the selection of the book! Teachers can choose from:

  • Favorite books that children want to be read to over and over again
  • Big books
  • Predictable books with rhyming or repeated text
  • Folktales
  • Comparative literature (two different books with similar characters or settings or concepts)
  • Books that link to the theme or concept taught
  • Recommended trade books that compliment the curriculum

CIRCLE recommends that classrooms need a balance of English and Spanish books as well as books that tie to the current theme or unit of study. Children should be exposed to a variety of genres including both fiction and non-fiction.

In Jim Trelease’s book, "The Read Aloud Handbook," he provides a list of don’ts including:

  • Don’t read stories that you don’t enjoy yourself. Your dislike will show in the reading and that defeats your purpose.
  • Don’t continue reading a book once it is obvious that it was a poor choice. Admit the mistake and choose another.
  • Don’t be fooled by awards. Just because a book won an award doesn’t guarantee that it will make a good read-aloud. In most cases, a book award is given for the quality of the writing, not for its read-aloud qualities.

The book "Literacy and the Youngest Learner," the authors state, “Many books for children - especially those sold at supermarkets or dollar stores or those based on TV or movie characters - are poorly written and do not expose children to quality writing.” For a list of good books for children, visit section 7.12 in our CIRCLE Activity Collection.

A read aloud can have many purposes, but whenever you are reading to a child or a group of children, you are always modeling reading behaviors. You are sharing information about print and text and helping children bridge those connections. In "Learning to Read and Write", the authors state, "Children are more likely to become good readers when they repeatedly encounter - both in and out of the classroom - the many ways that reading matters. Seeing teachers and other adults read for their own enjoyment and information. These experiences convey to children a powerful message about literacy’s pleasures and rewards.”

Planned read alouds can build literacy skills including letter knowledge, concepts of print, vocabulary and comprehension not to mention building a true love and appreciation for books. How you decide which books to read aloud is part of the planning process. The purpose for the read aloud will help you decide which book is appropriate.

In the ECIRCLE course, "Read Aloud," it states, "Thoughtful, thorough preparation is essential to a successful read aloud (one that is planful, playful, and purposeful). Though it may be tempting to simply gather your children and begin reading, read alouds should be as meticulously planned as any other part of an early-childhood curriculum. Make sure to set aside time to pre-read any book that you intend to read aloud."

By pre-reading, teachers can familiarize themselves with the material and have an opportunity to: 

  • Work on an appropriate tone with which to dramatize the story. For example, a Halloween story might be most effective if it's told it in a spooky tone. (With any Spanish book, make sure to know the country that it is from and the dialect.)
  • Decide how to introduce the book to the children.
  • Prepare open-ended questions for discussion.
  • Plan how to extend the story into other activities and into all of the centers over the course of the day and week.
  • Identify new vocabulary (both rare and root words) that you can elaborate on during the book reading. Root words can be used to form other, more complex words. For example, "fish" (Pescado) can be used to form "fisherman" (pescador)," "fishing" (pescando), or "fishy"(sospechoso). Rare words are unfamiliar words that are essential to understanding specific topics. For example, "carpenter" and "dump truck" are rare words related to construction. Teachers should select words that give clarity and meaning to the story. Rare words are not used often in young children's everyday conversations, and they are unlikely to learn the meanings of these words without hearing and discussing them in the context of a good book. Determine how you will present vocabulary words. Plan to give child-friendly definitions that explain the rare words in more concrete ways or in ways that relate to the children's everyday experiences. 


  • Bennett-Armistead, V. S., Duke, N. K., & Moses, A. M. (2005). Literacy and the youngest learner: Best practices for educators of children from birth to 5. Scholastic.
  • Neuman, S. B., Copple, C., Bredekamp, S. (2000). Learning to read and write: Developmentally appropriate practices for young children. National Association for the Education of Young Children, 1509 16th Street, NW, Washington, DC.
  • Trelease, J. (1982). The Read-Aloud Handbook.
Teaching Tips

Use the links below to access the CIRCLE Activity collection about Book Reading. Please note you must be logged into Engage for these links to work.

Tips for Book Reading

Every Center needs to have a literary connection. By doing this children have access to the books and are encouraged to use them in a variety of purposes.

Every library center should: 

  • Have a large variety of book types and subjects
  • Be refreshed regularly
  • Be a comfortable and inviting environment
  • Include story props
  • Display books at eye level
  • Give children lots of choices

A take home library is a great way to get parents involved in their child's education. Send home books that have been read in class and are associated with a specific theme to stimulate interactive conversations with the child and the parent.

One way to engage children is by using a read aloud chart. This tool helps draw children’s attention to the role of the author and illustrator and enhances their ability to notice specific features of words or letters by interacting with the word cards on the letter wall. This chart can be used as a mini lesson after a book has been read at least once or even after several readings.

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