Friday, September 16, 2011

Growing Readers in the Forest

The cool weather made it the perfect morning to curl up with a good book in reading workshop. For this blog entry I want to provide a little more information about what goes on during reading workshop. We have reading workshop on Monday and Friday mornings for about 45 minutes. Reading workshop begins with the whole class gathered on the carpet for a mini lesson. The mini lessons are moments when students can learn about the things readers do to grow their reading muscles and develop their reading life. After the mini lesson students focus their efforts around reading a "just right" book of their choosing. While they are reading the teachers circulate around the room to read and discuss reading strategies with students one-on-one.  As a part of Fridays' lessons I will be selecting different books and authors to showcase so the students can build their "Books To Read" list or as we sometimes call it "your books on deck."

What is the purpose of a reading log? 

You may have noticed your child has a reading log in their red binder behind the "My Reading Life" tab. We have discussed during reading workshop that readers keep records and then use those records to research changes they see in their reading. Record keeping comes naturally for some young readers, but for others it can be a bother. Tracking their reading progress throughout the year builds a student's confidence and strengthens their identity as a reader.  In Forest Class we are asking students to read at least 20 minutes a night from their "just right" book during the weeknights and record this in their reading log. We are also asking students to read the same "just right" of their choosing at home and school until it is completed. I encourage you to help your child record their reading each night in their log. 

Today's featured author

Today we began reading workshop by watching some short video clips about Jeff Kinney, the author of Diary of a Wimpy Kid series.  Since Diary of a Wimpy Kid is a popular book in our class, some students helped me create a basket of books they felt were similar to this series. Below is one of the clips we watched.

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