Eight years of elementary teaching in urban schools and ten years of home schooling. I've taught some 200 children to read now, from some of the brightest around through the middle ranges to a few tough nuts to crack, including my own dyslexic son -- I believe that every child capable of being in a regular school classroom and speaking can, with enough instruction, learn to read.
I use a combination of high-structure routines to improve mastery of the basic literacy skills and independent work time (centers) so children can have the freedom to explore their mastered skills. I am very devoted to children reading to themselves their own self-selected books (I blogged about this at http://www.classicaleducationtoday.com/?s=We+were+reading). Overall, my classroom looks like a mix of structured and unstructured blocks of time. It's balanced literacy based on Reading Street, but it's supplemented with the type of materials I'm displaying in my store.
My building's ESL teacher of the year in 2016
University of California, Irvine, Bachelor's in English Lit. University of Texas, Tyler, Master's in Reading (currently enrolled)
Married for over 20 years, and mom of 6, dog mom of 1, hamster mom of 3. And school mom of 19 wonderful students. I do tend to bite off (almost) more than I can chew, but I don't know any other way.