All journeys have a starting place.
This is a weekly place to find books and tools
that you may use with readers at the start of their reading journey.
Join in the conversation at #road2reading.
I am so lucky to cohost this day with the brilliant Alyson Beecher. I pay attention to everything she writes and says because she makes me a more informed and reflective educator. A few weeks ago she wrote a much needed post about the essentials our young readers need when beginning their reading journey. You can catch that post here.
I work in a K-4 building. There is a lot of learning to read that happens all day, in all of those grade levels. Sometimes the work looks very different, sometimes it looks very similar. But the essentials that Alyson discusses, should be found in all of those classrooms, no matter the grade.
Alyson continued the discussion, focusing on read alouds - also a post you don't want to miss!
As always, I spent some time reflecting on my beliefs on read alouds.
I believe read alouds should occur everyday in a K-4 classroom.
- #classroombookaday is a perfect way to make sure this happens!
Check out these #bookaday displays from 3rd and 4th grade!
I believe read alouds should be for fun, but can also be used for specific purposes (i.e. mentor texts).
- try and tie your picture book title selections to the literacy, writing, science, social studies and even math standards you are teaching
- write the texts down that make a difference in your lessons - these are your mentor texts!
- share books that make your students laugh, feel emotions, and think. Share your favorites, think about what your students' favorites might be and find those!
I believe students should have time to go back into the texts - whether for rereading for enjoyment or close reading.
- put the picture books you read aloud in a separate bin or location so students can revisit it and read them again
- go back to specific parts of the text to highlight something you want students to zero in on. For example, what grammar move or phonics example can you show students? It is way more meaningful to see it used in actual print than on a worksheet. Teaching dialogue? Show it in your read aloud, not on a worksheet! Take the time you would use looking online for a worksheet and read some picture books and mark the pages you want to show students. If we don't help student see the connections, they won't know how to try and apply the concept.
After we read our bookaday, it is placed in this bin
so students can read and reread it some more!
I believe read alouds are the catalyst for additional reading.
- read alouds are a way to introduce students to titles, concepts, authors they might not have tried on their own. After a nonfiction unit where all of our read alouds were nonfiction books, these 3rd graders and these 4th graders had a big opinion change about nonfiction reading!
- use read alouds to introduce new ideas and concepts. Then students have some background when reading about them in longer texts.
- want to use a read aloud to get students to read longer texts? Try #firstchapterFriday! Read aloud the first chapter of a chapter book to students to generate excitement for the book. By reading aloud one chapter, it often gives kids an understanding of the characters, setting and possibly a glimpse of the problem.
These are just a few idea of ways to use read alouds. I bet you have more! Share your ideas using the hashtag #road2reading so we can get new ideas. Or leave an idea in the comments!
Do you work with readers who are starting their journey on the road to reading? Join Alyson Beecher from Kid Lit Frenzy and me every Thursday as we explore books and ideas to help readers have a successful start to independent picture book and chapter book reading. If you blog or have a Goodreads page, please link up with us!