Remember that post I wrote a few weeks ago about how long I spend grading articles of the week? In today's post, I'm sharing the entire conversation between Kelly Gallagher and me.
A couple of months ago when I was working on Teaching with Articles, I emailed some folks who I believed could greatly help me in understanding what matters most in our instruction around shorter complex texts. Since many of you who read my blog initially find it when you search for “articles of the week,” you won't be surprised that one of the people I was most eager to speak with was AoW-creator and literacy guru, Mr. Kelly Gallagher. (I've written extensively on my journey with Gallagher's article of the week assignment.)
Some highlights to entice you into listening (in case you needed any):
- My awkwardness. (Throughout) Henceforth, let it be known that interviewing people I respect in an awkward fashion is my thing.
- Kelly's thoughts on how to retain our passion even when the hardest things happen. (5:50) In which Kelly treats, among other things, “compassion fatigue.”
- Kelly's most recent ‘Aha' moment. (9:08) Kids are changing.
- “You have to know stuff to read stuff.” (12:25) The origin story of articles of the week.
- “Some of these articles you're going to be interested in; some of these articles you're not going to be interested in.” (15:00) How Kelly is honest with his kids.
- How long Kelly spends grading articles of the week. (18:20) “This may come as a surprise or a shock or a disappointment…”
- At what point are our kids reading enough? (28:00) Kate from Iowa asks about volume and quantity.
- The book Kelly is working on right now with Penny Kittle. (32:45) Sounds fascinating.
- A few more reader questions. (34:17-End) Prior to this interview, I asked some of my readers what they'd like me to ask. I had a chance to pose some of these questions to Kelly, and the ones that I didn't get to ask, I attempt to address in the last portion of the interview.
I'm too much of a noob (and, frankly, too swamped with teaching right now) to set this up as a podcast on iTunes or XYZ platform — please just use the embedded player below to listen to the mp3 interview. If it's not working, you can find the mp3 here — download it, etc. Enjoy!
Here are some articles mentioned in the interview:
- E.D. Hirsch & Robert Pondiscio's “There's No Such Thing as a Reading Test.” (Mentioned at 13:10)
- Kelly's blog article, “Moving Beyond the 4×4 Classroom.”
- As Kelly says in the interview, “If your kids aren't reading way more, aren't writing way more, than any teacher can grade, I can guarantee you they're not writing enough.”
Also, I'd be remiss if I didn't mention Kelly's most recent books, from newest to oldest:
Of course, thank you to Kelly Gallagher, not just for this interview, but for the fact that he drove to his house when we encountered technical issues at the start of our first call attempt. Thanks also to John Lee Dumas, whose resources helped me think through how to organize and facilitate an interview over Skype.