What Is the Ziff Technique Method of Reading and Writing?

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Learning how to read using the Ziff Technique can bring your students light years ahead of the average kindergartner taught in the conventional way!

The very first day of learning begins with Step 1 of the Ziff Technique where the teacher is standing at the whiteboard and the children are seated in front of him on the rug. The teacher asks the children: What is the most exciting thing you have ever done? And the children’s hands start popping up: ‘I went to Disneyland,’  ‘I went scuba diving!’  ‘I went horseback riding!’ Then the teacher chooses one child’s topic and asks the whole group to close their eyes to prepare themselves to go on a ‘mind journey’. The teacher takes them on a visual trip of their chosen topic, asking them to visualize the various questions that the teacher is soliciting from them. After about three minutes, the teacher tells them to open their eyes and start expressing what it was that they saw on that visual mind journey.They begin explaining while the teacher writes down complete sentences on the board. When there are about two to four sentences related to the topic, the teacher asks each child to choose one of the sentences to read to him. When the child can read the sentence he/she has chosen, only then may she return to her seat to begin copying the sentence on paper, regardless of whether or not she knows how to use a pencil! After a student copies down the sentence and the teacher makes sure he has put the proper spacing between each word, he begins to cut  and paste. The child cuts each individual word out and then must re-structure the sentence in its proper order and paste it onto another piece of paper. He then must re-read the sentence aloud to the teacher and trace it over with a sharpie to emphasize the words he has created. After this, he uses the upper part of the paper, which contains blank space, to illustrate his sentence with Crayons to further the visualization of his sentence. This process is repeated with a new topic on a regular basis until the children build skills and confidence to be able to move to the next step in the Ziff Technique -which eliminates the cutting and pasting part of the technique.

This is a comprehensive writing and reading program for beginning and early readers which includes some phonics and sight word teaching as well as read alouds, oral presentations, thinking map skills, and grammar. The program includes a set of videos that show the teaching method and a guidebook that can be downloaded.

The Ziff Technique is an evolved method of teaching reading through writing, based on the earlier methodologies developed by experts such as Donald Graves, the ‘Father of the Writing Process’ and other reading and language experts such as Dr. Jeanne Chall of Harvard University.

If you buy the entire package it will only cost $179.95,
(Steps 1-5, Guide Book and The Ziff Words) however you can
purchase each separately at the prices in the drop down menu.
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