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Living Literacy at Home: A Parent's Guide
Living Literacy at Home: A Parent's Guide
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Reviewed Titles
Capstone Professional

Living Literacy at Home: A Parent's Guide

Reading to children at home is a joyful and celebratory time for parents and children alike. Both relish in the story and the time spent together. Early exposure to texts provides other benefits as well because it prepares children for school and builds a love of reading. Living Literacy at Home provides tips and strategies to help parents build those connections. Included is a snapshot of what literacy looks like in today’s classroom and support on how to make that home-to-school connection, how to build a home library and develop a reading routine, and how to make every day a literacy-rich day. Easy-to-use forms and a glossary of literacy terms round out this resource. Although the book is intended for parents of children in kindergarten through grade 8, the routines and suggestions can be easily adapted for any grade level.

BrandCapstone Professional
Age Level- Years
Reading LevelGrades K-8
Trim Size6 x 9
Page Count120



Teacher Librarian - David Loertscher

"Policastro goes beyond this one solution to provide ways that parents can understand the literacy program of the school and then work alongside it. She loves libraries, so that is helpful to teacher librarians who are involved in literacy initiatives. So, this slim volume is an idea collage that just might give you some ideas to pursue. Recommended for parent education and outreach." - Teacher Librarian

October 1, 2016

Leslie Parker, Speech/Language Pathologist, M.S.

"I was very impressed by the fount of knowledge and wisdom provided in the smart, easy to read, engaging parent guide to Living Literacy at Home. Along with thoughtful, practical and fun ways to focus on literacy in the home, Dr. Policastro informs parents of educational insights that are not readily provided by the school system, such as what makes up the literacy curriculum, what is expected of a child during the school day, how can a parent become successfully involved in the educational process, explanation of tests given, results and interpretations, discussions of the common core and a very helpful glossary of literacy terms. . . .I am a speech and language pathologist with 35 years of experience in the public school system. . . .I have never experienced a comprehensive guide such as this. I feel it would be very beneficial to ALL parents. I am anxious to share these ideas with my children and grandchildren." - Leslie Parker, Speech/Language Pathologist, M.S.

March 25, 2016

Illinois Reading Council Journal - Jennifer Berne

"Referring parents to a book such as this – even lending it to them – can open up so many opportunities for family engagement – opportunities that may not have occurred to parents. . . .Embedded in many of the topics is the idea that parents recognize their own positions as literacy role models. Discussions of family book clubs, modeling reading and writing for purpose and pleasure, and discussing one’s own literacy autobiography help parents see that they are not just facilitators of a child’s literacy but literate beings as well. A teacher who owns a copy or two of this book could easily pass it around to parents as a way to help them see where they are needed. This is a quick, easy read for even the busiest of parents." - Illinois Reading Council Journal

January 1, 2016


MiddleWeb - Judy Harris

"...chock full of wonderful anecdotes and ideas about how to enrich a child’s literacy experience on the homefront. . . .Policastro does a terrific job of building the case, via research and personal experiences, for stronger efforts to reinforce reading in all areas of a child’s life, especially at home. She paints a lovely picture of what she believes literacy instruction looks like in today’s classrooms and clearly demonstrates her extensive knowledge around what components should be included in that instruction – including journaling, small group instruction, and independent reading/writing. . . .As a quick resource for parents, the book provides a lot of terrific ideas and examples. Even as a resource for those pre-service teachers that Policastro works with at Roosevelt University in Chicago, the book provides solid background on best practices for home literacy supports." - MiddleWeb

October 9, 2016

Kathy H. Barclay, Ed.D., Professor Emeritus, Western Illinois University

"Readers of Living Literacy at Home will discover tried and true family-friendly supports for promoting the early and lasting development of critical life skills in reading, writing, listening, and speaking. Margaret Policastro draws on her work as a literacy educator and her experiences as the parent of four boys to create this gem of a book. Aimed at bringing key aspects of home and school together to create strong lifelong readers and writers, Living Literacy at Home is a valuable resource for parents as well as teachers whose goal is to provide parents with resources for supporting their children's academic success." - Kathy H. Barclay, Ed.D., Professor Emeritus, Western Illinois University

March 1, 2016

Margaret Mary Policastro

Margaret Mary Policastro

Dr. Margaret Mary Policastro is a professor of language and literacy at Roosevelt University in Chicago, Illinois, where she directs the language and literacy program and is the founding director of the Summer Reading Clinic for children. Dr. Policastro has more than 30 years of experience teaching both undergraduate and graduate students in language and literacy at Roosevelt University. She has worked more than 10 years on grant funded literacy projects in Chicago Public Schools and is currently the principal investigator of the Improving Teacher Quality (ITQ) grant from the Illinois Board of Higher Education (IBHE), funded by No Child Left Behind (NCLB). Dr. Policastro grew up in South Bend, Indiana, and attended Indiana University where she received her B.S. in art and elementary education and her M.S. in reading. After teaching art and reading in Indiana, she moved to Chicago, Illinois, and earned her Ph.D. at Northwestern University in reading and language. Dr. Policastro’s research interests currently focus on access to books for parents, children, and teachers and ongoing professional development for teachers and what effects these have on student learning. She has co-authored The New Balanced Literacy School: Implementing Common Core and Formative Assessment in the New Balanced Literacy School and authored Living Literacy at Home: A Parent’s Guide.

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