Reading - What Others Do!
Reading Overview l Grouping Students
l Leveled Texts l What Others Do l Teacher
I am busy with a guided reading group, what do the other students
do and how is this organized?
Suggestions |Literacy Center Ideas |
we discuss what the others do, you must be prepared to dedicate
an initial period of time to teaching the students what the guided
reading classroom looks and feels like. Have students identify what
their jobs consist of and what you will be doing while they are
working independently. Post these lists on the wall so you can point
to them to remind off task students of their responsibilities.
Consider having 20-30 different Literacy Centers (see below) that
you can use on a rotating basis. This frees you for individual
instruction and guided reading. Further, with that many activities
available kids can move at their own pace and in smaller groups.
You can avoid having 4 or 5 kids in one spot talking too loudly,
being off-task, or fighting over whatever materials they're using.
Put the more "academic" activities at the top, and the
really fun stuff (stamp a word, stencils, ABC magnets, etc.) at
the bottom of the column. Students will have added incentive to
stay on task.
a certain number of activities that are always on the activity
board and add in some of the other activities for variety each
Board Rotation Chart - Chart activities and groups so everyone
knows where to be - moving cards over to a new starting point
adding new activities, show students where the tub is kept and
how to use what's in it, and the card for that activity is already
up on the week's Work Board Rotation.
skipping an activity to get to another - this ensures students
do all end up in one center
the procedures are in place, you are free to begin teaching guided
reading. Here are some ideas for what the others might do while
you work with the GR group.
Ideas: An excellent resource for ready to go resources, readinglady.com,
has download files for your use, including: activity cards for guided
reading, activity explanation cards, authentic writing, bookmarks,
coaching handouts and other letters for parents, developmental spelling
test, journal directions, reading and writing rhymes, spelling activities,
reading assessment form, and more! Free registration is now required.
list that follows are suggested literacy center activities.
Activities center (song
and poetry cards, big books, other book type reading)
centers (flash cards, ABC books, song and poem cards, and
other ABC activities, alphabetizing)
Write the Room (small clipboards -- about 6x9 -- students
copy any print they see anywhere in the room. They must fill one
side of a page, even if they can't read everything they wrote.
Beginning writers draw pictures to help them remember the words).
Students can pair up & one may even use a pointer and tell
the other what to write.
the Room - reading anything that is posted in the room
Rainbow Spelling (Post the week's spelling words on a half
sheet of chart paper, students write them 3 times each with colored
markers or colored pencils.)
Activity Center - using their word lists create tongues twisters,
sentences, stories, word scrambles ...
(Read/do the activities in at least 4 charts - (story sentence
sequencing, making words challenge, etc).
a Word - take a tub with rubber alphabet stamps, stamp pads,
and large sheets of paper to a work area and stamp any words they
want to stamp.
Bins - independent, silent, or small group reading
Authors - A place to read student created work
Centers - Record the books you read to the class. Have parents
help out - have students record for others. How nice to hear your
friend, mom, dad, sister or brother read a story at center time!
letters/Magnetic Poetry for Kids - Make use of your metal
and sticker stories - Students use the stamps or stickers
(appropriate to the unit) and write rebus type stories using stamps/stickers
and words. Put a limit of stickers to be used or photocopy sheets
of stickers they can cut apart.
- Throughout the week students can go up to a pocket chart when
they have a few minutes and try to make words out of the scrambled
Mystery Word. On Fridays - students share all of the words that
they came up with and decode the mystery word. It's a great activity
for your average and high students.
Center -place numerous materials in a basket (writing utensils,
colored pens, markers, crayons, stickers, etc.), a tablet of story
paper and a stapler/binding machine. Encourage children to make
books about topic that interest them.
Journals - Have one student write their journal entry on the
overhead. The student reads the journal and gives the class permission
to edit the entry. The student gets to correct the errors and
the class rereads it out loud.
Make a center with a poster of the hand sign letters, flash cards,
and books (consider Braille or other languages as well).
Center - Find copies of appropriate word searches, laminate
them, and let the children write on them with washable markers.
When done, they use towels to clean them off.
Greeting Cards - have samples of greeting card verses, titles,
etc - cut them up for students to refer to for ideas. Add anything
pompoms, wiggly eyes, letter and picture stencils, etc....Encourage
students to make cards for their family, teachers around the building,
and students within the room.
Center - think word games - Scrabble, Story Scramble, Silly
Center - reading of living books or student created e-books
Centers/Student Post Office - for writing to others - a mailbox
for each student is a good idea to avoid note passing in class.
Play -- baskets of book & props (Mrs. Wishy Washy, etc.)
Hunt -- kids get a letter or digraph and see how many words
they can find that start with or contain it.
Box: Each guided reading group takes the books read during
GR group and put them into a browsing box. They can look at the
books as a group. This is effective because the students are dealing
with familiar text
independently. Each day "special" students choose books
to read from their
browsing box to the entire class.
Circle: A group of students will read a literature selection
together and discuss their favorite part. Once they are comfortable
with this process, they can map the story on large chart paper,
make puppets and put on a play for the class, etc. This allows
children to own literature.
Reading: Place duplicate copies of books at all levels in
the room. The students can read with a partner, this can be familiar
or unfamiliar texts. Then they work with their buddy to draw or
write about their favorite part.
Writing: Give students content related pictures to glue in
their journals as writing prompts
Center: Phonics based literature, games, worksheets and flash
Center: Use laminated alphabet cards for the class to practice
handwriting either by tracing over them in a marker or play dough.
They can also use wikki sticks or pipe cleaners to make letters.
Place a cloze paragraph on the overhead or let the kids map out
their stories on the overhead, stories they have read or will
be writing. Encourage students to use graphic organizers such
as plot graphs,
Venn diagrams, and T-charts to gain understanding into story reading
Word Center: (which may change to vocabulary center depending
on your students) They can make the sight words with rubber stamps,
magnetic letters, paint baggies, sand trays...
Teaching Resources - Books
are the other kids doing...while you teach small groups?
Creative Teaching Press--the book has 30 centers that
you can easily use in any classroom. Some can be the same for
weeks at a time... others you can change to go along with a specific
skill or theme. About $20.
Literacy Using Reading Manipulatives.
$15.95 from Creative Teaching Press.
A Poem a Day (Grades K-3) by Helen H. Moore
Thematic Poems and Activities That Teach and Delight All Year
Here is a big collection of cross-curricular poems written especially
for classroom use. You'll find poems that are perfect for every
day of the school...
Learning Centers: Phonics (Grades K-2)
by Mary Beth Spann
the mini-lessons, fun activities, and games in this phonics kit,
teachers will facilitate individual and small-group experiences,
encourage cooperative learning, and allow for different learning
Charts for Emergent Readers (Grades K-1) by Valerie Schifferdanoff
30 Fun, Interactive Cross-Curricular Charts that Build Literacy
Create irresistible pocket charts that are just right for emergent
readers. Use poems, songs, predictable stories and more to make
over 30 charts
Literacy with Interactive Charts (Grades PreK-2)
by Kristin G. Schlosser, Vicki L. Phillips
books listed above are available at amazon.com - many are in our