Custom Education Solutions' Literacy Blog

The Importance of Authentic Spanish Literature in Bilingual and Dual Language Classrooms

Two-Way Immersion. Transitional Bilingual Education. Dual Language. English Language Development. Developmental Bilingual. All of these labels reflect the diverse approaches have to the need to support an increasing number of non-English speaking students.  For more and more schools, however, the goal has shifted from focusing solely on learning English to developing bilingual, bi-literate, and multicultural students. 

Celebrating Black History Month at Custom Ed

Celebrating Black History Month: Black Heroes Don’t Always Have Claws

The excitement and energy that Black Panther has generated can be powerful when coupled with a Black History Month focus on African-American heroes. Students can discuss the qualities that make someone a hero or a good leader and learn about black Civil Rights leaders, scientists, government leaders, and artists that have made an impact.  While many schools have resources regarding important figures such as Martin Luther King Junior, Rosa Parks, Harriet Tubman, and Jackie Robinson, students should see that many others have contributed to our advancement as a society.

World Read Aloud Day 2018

World Read Aloud Day 2018: Read Aloud. Change the World.

Pam Allyn, founder of LitWorld, started the celebration of Read Aloud day in 2010. Today, the movement has spread into countries around the world. Pam, like other educators across the country, understands that the read aloud is an important part of a reading curriculum. In balanced literacy, the read aloud is integral to instruction. At Custom Education Solutions, you can find some amazing picture books and novels that you can use in your classroom to promote social-emotional development.

Read for the Record 2017

Read for the Record 2017: Celebrating Individuality and Self-Acceptance

Read for the Record is an annual campaign to bring attention to early literacy and language skills though the massive shared reading of an engaging picture book.  Jumpstart, the early childhood organization that puts on the event, is aiming to break their own world record that they set in 2013 with 2,462,860 people. While Jumpstart does provide activity sheets, a reading guide, and more to support teachers who would like to participate, we at Custom Education Solutions thought it would be great to extend the themes of individuality and acceptance through text sets, book clubs, or independent reading at all grade levels.


Teen Read Week Teaching Tips

I am not a teen, but I was one once. And as an adult, I still enjoy reading Young Adult fiction. Yes, I am that mom who read The Fault in Our Stars, Twilight, Hunger Games and Maze Runner. I read Young
Adult fiction for my students as much as I do for myself. When I told the striving readers in my 10th grade English class about how I couldn’t stop laughing while reading An Abundance of Katherines by John Green, they began to see me more as a reader and less as a reading dictator. Teen Read Week™ #TRW17 is a national adolescent literacy initiative created by the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA). It began in 1998 and is held annually in October the same week as Columbus Day. Its purpose is to encourage teens to be regular readers. As a consultant at Custom Education Solutions, I have a world of books at my finger tips and would love to invite you in to my world. In honor of Teen Read Week, I challenge you to pick up a novel written for teens and share it with an adolescent in your life. The more we read, the better readers we become.

International Literacy Day

Happy International Literacy Day!

Fifty-one years ago, September 8 was officially designated as International Literacy Day by UNESCO.  UNESCO is the United Nations group dedicated to increasing literacy rates around the world and using literacy to empower people and communities through inclusive, equitable, and quality education.  Each year UNESCO celebrates with a different theme; this year’s is “Literacy in a digital world”.  As the role of technology is such an important topic in education today, we at Custom Education Solutions were excited to see such a forward-thinking theme.


Celebrating Children’s Book Week

Celebrating Children’s Book Week Caption: The 2017 Children’s Book Week poster is by Christian Robinson (author/Illustrator of Last Stop on Market Street), and can be found here.   My name is Michelle Regan. Being a consultant here at Custom Education Solutions, as well as a mother of three school-aged boys, I encounter many amazing books for children. …


My Favorite 16 Books of 2016

At the end of the year, I find it helpful to reflect back on my reading for the past year. Along with looking at the total number of books I read, and it’s never as many as I hope because there are SO many good books I want to read and never enough time, I also think back on the ones I consider the best I’ve read that year. These favorites are typically the books I recommend the most to others throughout the year, and the ones that stick with me in some way.


Celebrating Ninja Day!

Did you know it’s National Ninja Day?! Well, I didn’t either until I happened to see a tweet about it awhile ago, and I knew I had to celebrate it because there are some fabulous picture books with a ninja theme!