This is a guest post by Lyssa Sahadevan of Marietta, GA. She writes a blog called My Mommy Reads which is about motherhood and teaching-related topics.
As soon as I have the reader’s workshop model up and running in my first grade classroom, I begin running records with my students. I have read one on one with them before this point, but I want to dig deeper. I value this time getting to know them as readers and thinkers. While it takes quite a bit of time, the information I gain is invaluable when it comes to planning instruction.
After analyzing the data from running records, I form guided reading groups. This is a happy day in my classroom! We follow the traditional guided reading model. I choose an instructional level text to share with a small group. We preview the text together and then focus on a specific skill such as vocabulary, fluency, comprehension, or phonics. Students keep the book in their just right bag for rereading.
Book choices include both fiction and nonfiction depending on our unit of study. During our informational units, we often record our thinking on sticky notes while reading. Sometimes students wanted more though! Last year, one of my readers asked if he could have “bigger paper” to write what he learned while reading Bears. Another student was reading Cheetah and wanted to write all that she had learned about the “big, wild cat.” I happily obliged!
From that point on, I decided to keep “Draw and Record” papers available for all students. They became quite popular and students even started asking to work on them during their free time! How exciting that students want to record and share their learning! It is also empowering students, as they are able to do so with pictures, words or both, allowing everyone to be successful. Another bonus? This meaningful activity comes in handy for teachers needing a minute or two to work with a couple of students in a small group.
Every reader, no matter what level they are on, wants to share their learning. This is a quick and fun way to just that! As you start guided reading, I hope this can be one more tool for your little informational experts! Download your Draw and Record Packet below!
For more information on the books used in this blog click the series highlights images on the left below or click these links to visit our webpage for the Story World Real World and Zoozoo Animal World series. To download the Draw and Record Packet, click the image to the right.