This text introduces an original, scalable instructional framework called Telling Our Stories (TOS), an approach for supporting culturally informed literacy instruction in the elementary classroom. Connecting the theory to practice, the TOS framework centers the cultural heritage and experiences of students and offers a roadmap to scientifically and pedagogically sound instruction.

Aligned with current curriculum standards, chapters feature authentic examples and case studies, reflection questions, and writing activities that will foster a culture of inclusion, community, and academic rigor. The many practical strategies promote students’ learning and appreciation of diversity through academic reading and writing as well as positive school-family and school-community relations. Readers will come away with new ideas, tools, and a thorough understanding of how to integrate culturally informed practices in ways that support the learning of all children. Accessible and comprehensive, this is an essential text for pre-service teachers in courses on ELA methods and literacy instruction, as well as practicing teachers.

Acknowledgements  Introduction: A Message to Our Readers  Part I: Fundamentals of Telling Our Stories  Chapter 1: The Conceptual Framework for Telling Our Stories  Chapter 2: An Indepth Look at the Telling Our Stories Framework  Part II. Telling Our Stories in Action: Case Studies and Implementation  Chapter 3: Telling Our Stories in Primary Classrooms  Chapter 4: TOS in Action in Intermediate Classrooms  Part III. Look Back and Looking Forward   Chapter 5: Reflections on the Journey  Chapter 6: Moving Forward with TOS…Appendices  Appendix A Professional Books on Writing Instruction  Appendix B The Charrette   Appendix C Classroom Vignettes for Four TOS Stages   Appendix D Autobiography and Biography Questionnaire (Fifth Grade)  Appendix E TOS Compare and Contrast T-chart   About the Authors