About Sharon Zinke

Sharon Zinke is a specialist in the area of literacy development and reading intervention. She has worked extensively with struggling readers at elementary, middle, and high schools in her years as a Classroom Teacher, Reading Specialist, Resource Specialist, and Reading Intervention Specialist.

Most recently, she has worked with elementary and middle schools in the Bay Area (Berkeley, Oakland, San Francisco, Hayward, Richmond, El Cerrito, San Pablo, Concord, San Lorenzo) to quickly raise the decoding and word recognition levels of students reading significantly below grade level and to assist intervention teams in setting up structures that support effective reading intervention and classroom support.

She works every week with children and collaborates with classroom teachers, literacy coaches, special education teachers, and RTI teams to plan effective intervention and classroom strategies for struggling readers. She has taught reading and literacy courses (Classroom-Tested Reading Techniques and the RICA preparation course) at the University of California Extension, Berkeley, with rave reviews.

She has developed the Rime Magic method, the Rime Magic kit and her book, The Decoding Solution: Rime Magic and Fast Success for Struggling Readers, published by Scholastic, to bring effective instructional strategies to teachers and success to students of all ages who have struggled with learning to read. When students can become proficient in decoding and spelling (encoding) through five-minute lessons in first grade or in small intervention groups, they are freed to spend the greatest amount of time in class reading and talking about books.

Sharon has refined her approach to an easy 7-step system that works, as students say, “like magic.” Her work has led to a dramatic rise in the decoding and word recognition levels of striving readers across the country.

Scholastic, Inc., has now published the new kit, Rime Magic: Phonics-Powered Prevention and Intervention for All Students (2017), which includes even more materials to empower students to master the foundational skills. In addition, the new Power Paks give teachers tools effective in addressing the needs of students who have qualified for special education services.

Sharon is committed that children learn to read in a way that feels natural to them. She believes that classrooms must be filled with books that are leveled to meet the needs of each and every child, especially in the early grades. She knows from decades of classroom experience that reading is all about comprehension and interacting with text and that we need to offer our students daily opportunities to read deeply and talk with their peers about what they are reading.

Sharon’s promise for the world: All children will learn to read with EASE and with DIGNITY and have fun while they’re doing it!