Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Debbie Miller's New Book

"In these times of scripted programs and prepackaged materials I know it may be tempting to surrender," Debbie writers. "But who among us is going to keep up the good fight? Who among us is willing to stand up for what we know is right? I'm in, and I hope you are , too."

This quote came from Debbie Miller's new book -
Teaching with Intention: Defining Beliefs, Aligning Practices and Taking Action K - 5
available through Stenhouse Publishers

You can preview part of the text online for free at -

I for one know how hard it is for teachers to resist the temptation to find that quick fix. The one program that will make teaching that much easier. Teachers are overworked and underpaid, and in most cases in NYC drowning in paperwork. Then along come the publishers touting their program as the answer to all prayers. Everything in one place - right at your fingertips. Don't believe the promises. There will never be a one size fits all program that will solve all your problems. Children are diverse learners and need diverse instructional practices. I think we should feel honored that we have the opportunity to create our own road maps even if it is hard work.

I for one will be waiting patiently to read the rest of Debbie's book. Please post your thoughts on the opening preview after you read it.



Susan Wilson said...

I have read and used Debbie's first book, Reading with Meaning, so much that the pages are falling out. I teach first grade and strive to create the type of classroom Debbie describes. The learning kids demonstrate on a daily basis is astounding when they drive the curriculum. Leaving behind the prepackaged programs was easy for me. I am looking forward to reading the entire text. I will be putting my order in as soon as possible.

debrennersmith said...

I read what Debbie Miller has given us in her preview. I am so excited that I preordered a copy. My daughter stood in line for hours Friday night for Stephanie Meyer's book, breaking dawn. She stayed up ALL NIGHT READING it. Her friends are sure that they are the first ones to stay up all night. I love that they are staying up all night in my house reading a book!

Coach Hamilton said...

I agree whole heartedly with Debbie and the insight she has in seeing schools step back to scripted lessons, programs, and dumming down the teacher and student! I can't wait to read the rest of her book and to share the strength and joy found in teaching the reader/writer instead of reading and writing.

debrennersmith said...


Debbie Miller's complete book now on line.


Shannon said...

I have read most of Reading with Meaning and all of Mosaic. Looking forward to reading Debbie's new book! Thanks for your thoughtful post. I headed into the last day of my long weekend worried about the week to come, and am now remembering why I teach in the first place. It's hard, but comes with purpose, passion, and perseverance. Have a wonderful week! Looking forward to frequently reading your blog.

debrennersmith said...


Laura, my site link is not working. I don't why or how to fix it. Please fix the link to the above link. THANKS

teachermel92 said...

After devouring Debbie's first book, "Reading with Meaning," I could hardly wait for this next installment.
"Teaching with Intention" is another amazing read. I think that this one, however, should be read before her first. It should excite those ready for a change. My copy of "Reading With Meaning" has pages falling out, and I have had the pleasure of hearing Debbie speak twice! She is an amazing person and educator!

mj said...

Reading with Meaning is my language bible. I remember using non-fiction convention notebooks with my grade two class and the learning being deep and meaningful in my classroom for what felt like the first time. That year I didn't use very much of my photocopy budget and I was a MUCH happier teacher with a lot less "work" and much more fun in my teaching.
I have been out of the classroom for 3 years working at my union office and I have chosen to go back to teaching. I have a grade one class at a small rural school and I've been picturing my class with my couch and chair in the meeting area and the hum of children learning. When I read the beginning excerpt from Debbie's book I have to admit, it brought tears to my eyes. It is what I am thinking it will be like in my classroom this fall and I am so looking forward to going back AND to reading the rest of Debbie's book. Her writing isn't like that of other professional teaching resources. I read every word of Debbie's book and have done so a few times. I take parts of other professional resources but use them as a reference book. Debbie's writing takes you on a journey so you know as a teacher what it is supposed to look like and feel like when you get it right.