Layers of Learning

Using Read-Alouds to Connect Literacy and Caring Conversations

Available Now!

What if we viewed every read aloud as an invitation to learn more about literacy and ourselves? When we layer together the two ideas that the books we share not only serve an academic purpose, but they also convey big, affective messages, our classroom conversations become richer and student learning becomes more meaningful.

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This title is also available through major book retailers, including Amazon.

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eBook Now Available Through Major Retailers

Layers of Learning explores read-aloud strategies designed to enhance your reading and writing standards by capitalizing on the way literature can impact caring communities. With over 200 picture-book suggestions, author JoEllen McCarthy introduces the Heartprint Framework, which demonstrates how you can layer literacy and life lessons throughout your day using multiple connections across learning.

Inside, you’ll find the following:

  • 60 read-aloud-based connections that support caring classroom conversations, lesson planning, and extensions
  • Instructional opportunities for nurturing readers and writers during workshop, small-group, and individual conversations
  • Literacy Snapshot photo essays with ideas to adopt or adapt
  • Continuing connections with additional resources and invitations for further learning 

Layers of Learning is structured around four key elements: Community, Agency, Respect, and Empowerment, or CARE. Inside you’ll discover the tools you need to emphasize reading and writing connections, character education, and culturally responsive teaching, while championing the power of read alouds to affect independent readers, writers, and thinkers. This book aims to shift literacy instruction and social-emotional learning from either-or choice to responsive yes-ands.  


eBook Available Through Major Retailers

We offer ebook editions for most of our print titles so you can access on your computer, tablet, or e-reader from several major retailers including Amazon, Barnes and Noble, OverDrive, and View the full list of retailers here. For eBook purchases of 10+ please email us for a quote. Purchases of 20+ qualify for a bulk discount.

If you previously purchased an ebook from, they will remain available in your digital library. 

    About the Author(s)

    JoEllen McCarthy is a lifelong learner and staff developer who spends her days facilitating collaborative coaching conversations that support a curriculum of children and emphasize literacy as a vehicle to care. As the Educator Collaborative’s Book Ambassador, JoEllen spreads her enthusiasm for the role literature plays in all aspects of education.


    Product Details

    Grades: K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6
    Media: 232 pp/paper
    Year: 2020
    Item No: 1291-4
    ISBN: 978-1-62531-291-4