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Disrupting Thinking

  • Title:Disrupting Thinking: Why How We Read Matters
  • Author:Kyleen Beers, Robert Probst
  • Publication Date:April 2017
  • Grade Level:K-12
  • ISBN:9781338132908
  • Publisher:Scholastic

In their hit books Notice and Note and Reading Nonfiction, Kylene Beers and Bob Probst showed teachers how to help students become close readers. Now, in Disrupting Thinking they take teachers a step further and discuss an on-going problem: lack of engagement with reading. They explain that all too often, no matter the strategy shared with students, too many students remain disengaged and reluctant readers. The problem, they suggest, is that we have misrepresented to students why we read and how we ought to approach any text - fiction or nonfiction.

With their hallmark humor and their appreciated practicality, Beers and Probst present a vision of what reading and what education across all the grades could be. Hands-on-strategies make it applicable right away for the classroom teacher, and turn-and-talk discussion points make it a guidebook for school-wide conversations. In particular, they share new strategies and ideas for helping classroom teachers:

  • Create engagement and relevance
  • Encourage responsive and responsible reading
  • Deepen comprehension
  • Develop lifelong reading habits

"We think it's time we finally do become a nation of readers, and we know it's time students learn to tell fake news from real news. It's time we help students understand why how they read is so important"; explain Beers and Probst. "Disrupting Thinking is, at its heart, an exploration of how we help students become the reader who does so much more than decode, recall, or choose the correct answer from a multiple-choice list. This book shows us how to help students become the critical thinkers our nation needs them to be."

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Author Bio

Kylene Beers, Ed.D., is a former middle school teacher who has turned her commitment to adolescent literacy and struggling readers into the major focus of her research, writing, speaking, and teaching. She is author of the best-selling When Kids Can’t Read/What Teachers Can Do,Adolescent Literacy: Turning Promise into Practice, and co-author (with Bob Probst) of Notice and Note: Strategies for Close Reading. She taught in the College of Education at the University of Houston, served as Senior Reading Researcher at the Comer School Development Program at Yale University, and most recently acted as the Senior Reading Advisor to Secondary Schools for the Reading and Writing Project at Teachers College.


Kylene has published numerous articles in state and national journals, served as editor of the national literacy journal, Voices from the Middle, and was the 2008-2009 President of the National Council of Teachers of English. She is an invited speaker at state, national, and international conferences and works with teachers in elementary, middle, and high schools across the US. Kylene has served as a consultant to the National Governor’s Association and was the 2011 recipient of the Conference on English Leadership outstanding leader award.

Robert (Bob) Probst is the author of Response and Analysis, he is coeditor (with Kylene Beers and Linda Rief) of Adolescent Literacy: Turning Promise into Practice, and coauthor (with Beers) of Notice and Note: Strategies for Close Reading.


Bob began his teaching career as high school English teacher and then became a supervisor of English for a large district in Maryland. He spent most of his academic career at Georgia State University where he is now Professor Emeritus of English Education. After retiring from Georgia State University, he served as a research fellow for Florida International University. He now consults, with Kylene Beers, in school districts across the United States.


Bob has served as a member on the Conference on English Board of Directors, an NCTE journal columnist, and a member of the NCTE Commission on Reading. He speaks nationally and internationally to administrators and teachers on literacy issues, particularly issues around struggling readers and meeting standards.

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