Thursday, November 14, 2013

We are THANKFUL for.... { New ideas}

Something new I started doing in my Title Reading Room was spending the entire first month of school on reading strategies. I chose wonderful picture books at various levels and would focus on one reading strategy per week. I noticed a great improvement in my kiddos comprehension level when I didn't just focus on preparing them for the big state assessment! They actually did better on the tests when they began to understand and apply the reading strategies. One tool that helped me get started is a fabulous website called Readers Toolkit. I heard this gal speak at an IRA conference and she was amazing. Her website has some great lesson plans and ideas. If you click on the picture below it will take you to her website. Just click on "lessons" at the top and it will take you to some great lesson plans for free!
I also started using sticky notes and anchor charts all of the time! Each kid got a stack of sticky notes and would be expected to jot down their thinking as they were reading. We would call this making tracks. Just like an animal makes tracks in the snow, I wanted to see their thinking while they were reading. I expected them to jot down things on their sticky notes and stick them in the book they were reading! I created a "Making Tracks" anchor chart the that you can download by clicking on the picture below.
I would also use these fun graphic organizers weekly in my classroom. I mounted them onto a file folder and laminated them. The kiddos would use white board markers to fill in the information they could find while reading. After sharing what they found, we would wipe them off and use them again! It was just a fun and different way to motivate my students to use their strategies. You can download this freebie by clicking on the pictures below!
 The last thing I would always use with my reading strategy instruction is these anchor charts! I made them simple but effective for teaching the strategies and the kids utilized them a lot! These are available in my store!

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