Among the many changes to sweep American literacy education has been a move toward whole class instruction. Nonetheless, children still bring to literacy a wide range of experiences and competencies. How, then, might teachers best support a literate community yet still meet the needs of individual readers? For the authors, the answer lies in guided reading, which allows children to develop as individual readers withing the context of a small group. This text was written for K-3 classroom teachers, reading resource teachers, teacher educators, preservice teachers, researchers, administrators, and staff developers. Based on the authors' nine years of research and development, it explains how to create a balanced literacy programme based on guided reading and supported by read aloud, shared reading, interactive writing, and other approaches. While there is an entire chapter devoted solely to the process by which children become literate, everty chapter clearly presents the theoretical underpinnings of the practices it suggests.
Also included are guidelines for: observation and assessment; dynamic grouping of readers; creating sets of leveled books; selecting and introducing books; teaching for strategies; and classroom management. There are also well over 2500 leveled books in the Appendices, along with many other reproducible resources that should be useful to teachers.