Teaching Reading and Writing about Informational Texts

Professional Development
Graduate Credits: 


This workshop is offered free of charge thanks to a grant from the Library of Congress Teaching with Primary Sources Program at CES.  

This workshop features:

  • Access to top literacy trainer, Sanford Roth
  • A focus on informational texts, as required by Common Core ELA standards
  • Use of the resources of one of the world's largest libraries - the Library of Congress - in support of literacy
  • Instruction regarding reading and writing in all disciplines

"In [elementary school], fulfilling the standards requires a 50-50 balance between informational and literary reading. Informational reading includes content-rich nonfiction in history/social studies, sciences, technical studies, and the arts. The [elementary] standards strongly recommend that texts - both within and across grades - be selected to support students in systematically developing knowledge about the world."  - Key Shifts in English Language Arts in the Common Core

How can elementary teachers successfully accomplish these shifts?

Since 2007, Dr. Sanford Roth has helped hundreds of teachers learn and apply strategies using the full range of informational texts. In partnership with the Library of Congress Teaching with Primary Sources Program, CES announces a new course to help elementary teachers master the shifts in ELA standards.

Participants will:

  • Gain teaching strategies for using informational texts, including content readings, textbooks, and primary sources from across the academic disciplines
  • Access engaging texts in varied media, including newspapers, speeches, letters, advertisements, reports, images, video, graphs and charts, music, and maps from the vast collections available for free online from the Library of Congress
  • Use tools and methods to analyze informational texts
  • Learn and practice methods to choose appropriate types and levels of texts
  • Develop a resource bank of appropriate texts for classroom use
  • Write and apply a lesson or activity that demonstrates one or more strategies to effectively teach reading and writing about informational texts before, during, and after reading


Classroom teachers of all subject areas, Grades 3 - 6.


22.5 PDPs or 1 graduate credit in partnership with Fitchburg State University. To earn PDPs or Graduate Credit, participants must complete all assignments by the last class, details of which will be provided in the class syllabus. Graduate Credit from Fitchburg State University costs $220. Registration for Graduate Credit takes place in the first class, with payment accepted by credit card or check.


Future training dates will be announced here. If you have questions or are interested in offering this training on-site, please contact us.


  • Sanford Roth is a veteran classroom, reading, and special education teacher. Trained as both a Literacy trainer and a Reading Recovery teacher, Sandy has led school improvement initiatives in Massachusetts and Connecticut school elementary schools. He has done extensive consulting in the teaching of reading. He has a B.S.E. from the University of Michigan, and an M.Ed., CAGS, and Ed.D. from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

  • Rich Cairn

    Rich Cairn founded the Accessing Inquiry project of Emerging America, which focuses on inclusion of ALL learners in History, Civics, and Social Science classrooms, especially students with disabilities and English Learners. 

For more information, contact:
Events Coordinator
413.586.4900 x5981