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A Modern Teacher Reading Resources

Awhile back I had a reader ask how I teach reading.  I could talk forever about reading.  I LOVE teaching reading.  However, I thought I would sum up my favorite resources and my reading block for you in one little post.  Please remember…Reading Block is dynamic (as it should be) so I say this with the idea that it can change.  As you know, this is my 2nd year at home with my new baby (well, not so new anymore) and although I am not teaching reading in a classroom to 2nd or 3rd graders, I am now teaching reading to a preschooler (my older kiddo just dying to learn to put letters and sounds together).  I love it!  However, by no means am I the end-all-know-all.  I am going out of my comfort zone today (which I love by the way) and am so honored to be answering this question.

My reading block has mostly been a reading workshop model with a Daily 5 type of environment.  During the last 3 years of my teaching, my team and I integrated reading and writing together.  It was a challenge and was just getting off the ground but it was good.  Good for the kids and good for time management.  So, to begin the literacy block I always started with some sort of read aloud…a picture book.  During this time I modeled whatever skill I wanted them to learn.  I never tell them “today I’m going to teach you….” After years of doing this (and when the Texas Objectives first came out, I would post the objectives right away)…not anymore.  We have moved away from that.  I first just start reading…model, model, model and then after they start contributing I say “you know what you just did….you _____” then I can stress the skill or objective.  There has to be some sort of buy-in.  Usually the first day of the week I started with the ‘To’ approach…gradually moving into the ‘With’ and then wrapping it up with the ‘By’.  This meant I scaffolded the learning.  Lots of anchor charts were used…no pre-made charts though.  I wrote the words the kids actually said and organized them in a way to teach the skill.  We then went into some sort of Daily 5 routine, or some sort of partner practice, or an individual practice.  Some weeks we had ‘book clubs’…a term I used for ‘literature circles’ during this time.  After this, we always had self-sustained reading, during which time I pulled guided reading groups.  Usually I met with 2 groups a day.  On a really, really good day, I would meet with 3.  We finished up with a sharing component.

Then, during the writing block (every day), we had more concentrated word work at the beginning of the block.  I used whichever book I read during reading time to model the writer’s craft.  I completed a very short model of the skill and then we went into writing workshop. Kids write—I pull students (sometimes individually, sometimes in pairs, and sometimes in small groups)–then we share.  I would find a couple of students who did exactly what the lesson for the day was and highlighted their work.  This was in addition to the students who got to share.

In a nutshell, this is my literacy block.  I hope I didn’t forget anything and  I hope this helps!  I tried to make this as concise as possible.

Really these resources are what have formed my literacy time:

Reading Resources from www.amodernteacher.com

Guiding Readers and Writers and Guided Reading by Fontas and Pinnell
Reading with Meaning by Debbie Miller
The Daily 5 by Boushey and Moser

And I forgot an important one:

Strategies That Work by Harvey and Goudvis

writing resources:

Writing Resources from www.amodernteacher.com

The Nuts and Bolts of Teaching Writing by Lucy Calkins
Writing Workshop by Ralph Fletcher
Notebook Know-How by Buckner and Fletcher
A Writer’s Notebook by Ralph Fletcher
Craft Lessons by Ralph Fletcher

Again, I hope this helps.  Thanks so much for asking.  You all are the BEST!  So, your turn!  What is your favorite reading or writing resource?  I would love to hear from you!