Initially when I started teaching kindergarten I couldn’t foresee how guided and shared reading would become such a critical part of my teaching day. Now most of my key literacy skills are taught within implementing these.
The majority of kindergarten children enter your classroom not being able to read or even understanding the process. Exposing them to predictable emergent readers allows them to pretend read from memory based on repetition of print and picture clues. My students beam when they finish reading to me. I say, “I can’t believe that you can read after the first week of kindergarten!”
My Guided Reading Lesson for This Week
Connection to Literature
Many of the emergent readers are a simple retelling of a literature selection. The focus literature selection for the upcoming week will be “Rainbow Fish”. This is a great book to use to address the concept of sharing and to introduce the related emergent reader.
Shared Reading – Rainbow Fish Retelling
I project the color version of the emergent reader on my Smart Board. First we do a picture walk and predict what the story might be about. I read the book to them and after we circle and read the words together, reinforcing the use of pictures to give us clues as to what the text reads.
The reader is not only meant to introduce the reading process but also key learning concepts. The following concepts will be introduced during shared reading time: what a word is, letters “r” and “f” and their related sounds, sight word “a”, colors and color words.
I don’t exceed six students during my guided reading group time. Since we have read the selection over several times during shared reading, many of my students are able to pretend read the majority of the book. During guided reading they circle the words and color the pictures according to the text. This not only adds a comprehension and fine-motor component but most students complete this task at varying times, allowing me to focus on one student at a time. They read the book to me (tracking the words they circled) and after read it to a friend and take it home to read to their parents.
What Do the Other Students Do During This Time?
Six students are with me, six students are with my assistant completing the rainbow craft outlined below. The other half of the class are at “Developmental Centers”. I realize that many of you may be in different situations in terms of funding, level of assistance offered and working in a system that does not necessarily value the importance of “Developmental Centers” so I have outlined two possibilities.
I call these “Deveopmental Centers” also once known as “Play Centers”. However, since the term “play” and its level of importance has been removed from many classrooms (sad), I still feel many teachers could easily justify using the ones below because they significantly impact a child’s development, certainly more than the use of worksheets.
1. Lego, blocks and other construction toys which help develop a child’s ability to problem solve, use logic, be creative and further develop fine-motor skills. I love going into a teacher/parent store and exploring all the new construction toys that have come out in the last few years. I want to buy them all. Each year, we add to our collection of good quality construction toys because many homes do not have these and I see so much learning potential. Our newest purchase is “magformers”. I am still waiting for them to arrive.
2. Play dough
4. Writing and Drawing – at this center we place crayons, pencils, scissors, paper and simple step by step how to draw sheets. Once the students have been shown how to use the sheets, they get good at using them independently.
5. Computers - simple games
6. Creative Craft – At this center there are many odds and ends from left over crafts and what outsiders provide for us. I recently found a large bag of small beads in our storage closet to add to this center. I threw in some pipe cleaners and my students have been busy creating necklaces, bracelets, and rings. I will later challenge them to create a pattern (adding a math component). What better way to improve fine-motor development and understanding patterning?
7. Library – I am very fortunate to have a huge selection of books related to all our themes. We have a quiet and comfortable space where students can explore books.
I know many teachers run their “Literacy Centers” during guided reading time. For my students, this would not be independent enough that I could comfortably run a guided reading group at the same time. Also, since my “Literacy Centers” are based on my students practicing what they learned during “Circle or Shared Reading Time” I feel it is important for me to assess and monitor what they have learned. My “Literacy Centers” for this week are outlined below. Each “Literacy Group” has five to six students and I have them rotate from station to station. I duplicate the activities so that they are played with set partners.
Printing Book – Group 1
Complete printing book “r and f” and stamp pictures beginning with that sound. Printing book found in link below:
Object or Picture Sorting – Group 2
My students will be digging into the rice or soy bean tactile tubs for objects to determine if they begin with “Ll, Hh, Rr or Ff” sounds. If I do not have enough objects representing a sound, I use picture cards laminated on cardstock instead (found in the “All About Me” theme).
I recently purchased soy beans from the “Bulk Barn”. It was the cheapest I could find for creating another tactile tub. My students really enjoy this experience.
Spin and Print – Group 3
Spin and Print
Students take turns spinning a top and printing the letters “r and f” depending on what picture the top lands on.
Sight Word Focus Game – Group 4
This would be similar to the game above but only with focus sight word.
Alphabet Ordering and Matching – Group 5
I have all the alphabet letters in the correct order in pocket charts. The lower-case letters are printed on poker chips. The students must match the poker chips to the correct letter found within the pocket charts. I have three pocket charts (2 students working at each chart). They are encouraged to say the name of the letter, if they know it). Later in the year, I will have them put the alphabet letters in the correct.
Rainbow – Craft
Follow-up Craft – Rainbow Using Pastels
Since this week we are talking about “Rr” for rainbows and colors, I decided to have the students do the craft displayed in the photograph. They cut and colored the rainbow using pastels. This also required them to become familiar with color words found on the rainbow template. The template is found in the link below:
Note: This PDF file can be copied off on 11 X 14 paper to enlarge it.
Rainbow Craft Template
Each newsletter I offer a “Fabulous Freebie”, in the link below you will find an emergent reader related to fall.
Fall Emergent Reader
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