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Connecting Across Disciplines

Collaborating with Informational Text

Susan Chenelle and Audrey Fisch

While the Common Core has made informational text a focal point in English/language arts classrooms around the country, it has also made literacy a key concern in other subjects.

Teaching literacy in the disciplines and navigating informational texts are challenging prospects. How can content-area teachers find high-quality informational texts that will enhance their curriculum? How do they go about working with these new texts? Most importantly, how do teachers balance their responsibility towards their subject matter with the new charge to incorporate disciplinary literacy?

The key is to connect, communicate, and collaborate. Teachers can meet these challenges together and enhance student literacy, engagement, and motivation along the way. This volume offers a practical model that teachers in any discipline can use to incorporate informational texts into their classrooms on their own or in collaboration with colleagues in other content areas. We also share suggestions and ideas for initiating and implementing collaboration between teachers of any discipline, even those working at the secondary level with complex schedules and curricula.
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Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
Pages: 124Size: 6 1/4 x 9 1/2
978-1-4758-2027-0 • Hardback • February 2016 • $52.00 • (£34.95)
978-1-4758-2028-7 • Paperback • February 2016 • $26.00 • (£17.95)
978-1-4758-2029-4 • eBook • February 2016 • $24.00 • (£15.95)
Audrey Fisch is Professor of English and Coordinator of Secondary English Education at New Jersey City University where she has taught for over twenty years. She has published a wide variety of academic work and has worked as a curriculum consultant and professional development provider for K-12 districts in New Jersey.

Susan Chenelle has taught English and journalism for eight years at University Academy Charter High School in Jersey City, New Jersey, where she serves as English department lead and peer coach for humanities. She holds a master’s degree in education from New Jersey City University and a bachelor’s degree in English from Kenyon College.
Chapter 1: Literacy: Everyone’s Responsibility (and Opportunity)
Chapter 2: Collaboration: The Gift of the Common Core
Chapter 3: Our Model for Finding and Using Great Informational Texts
Chapter 4: Preparing an Informational Text
Chapter 5: Making Vocabulary Work
Chapter 6: Supporting Active Reading
Chapter 7: Checking for Understanding
Chapter 8: Extending Learning: Writing and Discussion Activities
Chapter 9: Thinking Big: Class Activities and Projects
Chapter 10: Using Hooks: Multimedia
Chapter 11: Alignment with Common Core Assessments
Chapter 12: You Can Do This: Keys to Implementation
Appendix: The Fruit Fly Unit
About the Authors
Fisch and Chenelle have crafted a grounded and practical text for educators seeking to collaborate across disciplines to help students make meaning of informational text. Their interdisciplinary approach offers classroom-tested strategies for engaging students in literature and non-fiction text through multiple points of entry.
Heather Lattimer, associate dean and professor, School of Leadership and Education Sciences, University of San Diego

Today's teachers are responsible for teaching literacy skills within their unique disciplines. This book is a tremendous resource for educators who want to engage their students in authentic reading and their colleagues in meaningful collaboration. Chenelle and Fisch continue to build upon their powerful work with informational texts by bringing teachers practical strategies for every classroom.
Lauren K. Francese and Rebecca H. Marsick, authors of “Stretching Beyond the Textbook: Reading and Succeeding with Complex Texts in the Content Areas”

Literacy IS a shared responsibility. Practical and timely, Connecting Across Disciplines provides teachers of all content areas models of collaboration that can be easily implemented. And, with its example lessons, texts, and assessments, it is an invaluable resource for novice and experienced teachers looking to integrate informational text into their curricula. I can't wait to introduce this book in my education courses!
Emily S. Meixner, associate professor of English and Secondary English Education Program Coordinator, The College of New Jersey

Many students still ask their teachers the age-old question: "Why do we have to learn this?" Fortunately, Fisch and Chenelle provide a powerful approach to answering this question. By using provocative informational texts and media, teachers can ignite students' interest and build deeper understandings of the issues. In their practical and engaging volume, Fisch and Chenelle provide teachers with a flexible plan that outlines how this type of work can be accomplished and how the Common Core State Standards can be implemented in meaningful ways.
Amy Alexandra Wilson and Kathryn Chavez, authors of "Reading and Representing Across the Content Areas: A Classroom Guide"