The Common Core Approach to Building Literacy in Boys
by Liz Knowles, EdD, and Martha Smith
May 2014, 285pp, 7 x 10
1 volume, Libraries Unlimited

Paperback: 978-1-61069-635-7
$50, £39, 44€, A69
Please contact your preferred distributor for pricing.
eBook Available: 978-1-61069-636-4
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An all-inclusive look at the challenge of what to use—and how to use it—when working with boys to enhance literacy.

Written with a focus on the English Language Arts Common Core Standards, this book provides a complete plan for developing a literacy program that focuses on boys pre-K through grade 12.

Despite the fact that reading and literacy among boys has been an area of concern for years, this issue remains unresolved today. Additionally, the emphasis and focus have changed due to the implementation of the English Language Arts Common Core Standards. How can educators best encourage male students to read, and what new technologies and techniques can serve this objective? The Common Core Approach to Building Literacy in Boys is an essential resource and reference for teachers, librarians, and parents seeking to encourage reading in boys from preschool to 12th grade.

Providing a wide array of useful, up-to-date information that emphasizes the English Language Arts Common Core Standards, the bibliographies and descriptions of effective strategies in this book will enable you to boost reading interest and performance in boys. The chapters cover 16 different topics of interest to boys, all accompanied by a complete bibliography for each subject area, discussion questions, writing connections, and annotated new and classic nonfiction titles. Information on specific magazines, annotated professional titles, books made into film, websites, and apps that will help you get boys interested in reading is also included.


  • Examines and evaluates the most recent research about boys and nonfiction reading
  • Addresses the intersections of Common Core Standards and literacy for boys
  • Provides annotated bibliographies of recommended books as well as lists of apps and other software for boys
  • Offers educators effective strategies to promote reading with boys and advice for parents in developing a home reading plan for their sons
Liz Knowles, EdD, is owner of Cognitive Advantage, a one-on-one cognitive coaching business. She is a former elementary teacher for grades K–6 and was adjunct professor, teaching graduate courses in reading, at Florida Atlantic University. Knowles has been the director of professional development and curriculum at Pine Crest School in Boca Raton and Fort Lauderdale, FL. Knowles received an undergraduate degree in elementary education from Central Connecticut State University; a master's degree in reading from Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, FL; and a doctoral degree in curriculum development and systemic change, also from Nova Southeastern University.

Martha Smith has been a media specialist for moer than 30 years in the pre-K through 8th grade setting. She recently served as library media specialist at Pine Crest School, Boca Raton, FL. Smith received an undergraduate degree in library science from Eastern Michigan University and a master's degree of education in library science from the University of South Florida.


"Authored by the owner of Cognitive Advantage and former elementary teacher for grades K-12, as well as a library media specialist, this work focuses on two areas of need—raising literacy levels in boys in particular, and the Common Core standards that are being implemented in schools across the United States. . . . While the title implies the book is geared toward working with boys, many of the resources and ideas will work schoolwide with children of both genders. School librarians at the elementary, middle, and high school levels will all benefit from this work . . . Public librarians working with children in K-12 will also benefit, as will classroom teachers seeking titles and ideas for integrating literature across the curriculum."—ARBA, November 12, 2014
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