Saturday, July 21, 2012

Read-to-Self Accountability and Reader's Response Notebooks

Last year was my first year using Daily 5 and boy, did I learn a lot. I think that my biggest struggle was making sure that my kids were understanding what they were reading, and not just look at the word and pictures the whole time. Especially in third grade when comprehension is such a HUGE part. So, this year I was doing some research and looking for different ways to ensure my students are accountable for the reading during read-to-self. This is especially important because I am starting CAFE next year and while some students are doing Read-to-Self, I will be doing guided reading groups and doing assessments.

I have decided to give my students a Reader's Response Notebook to help them stay accountable during Read-to-Self. 2nd Grade Shenanigan did a post about reader response and think clouds. I really like what she did here because she had different prompts with comprehension questions that focus on different skills such as author's purpose, visualize, making a connection, and summarize. I also liked how she also included a rubric so the students know what they are expected to do! Also, Amanda Nickerson's Cultivating Strategic Readers has amazing questions that are called "Chat and Go" questions. I used them last year with my reading intervention students. This year, I'm going to have my students respond to them in their Reader's Response Notebooks.

Reader's Response Notebooks:

The rubric so students know their expectations of the Reader's Response Notebooks:

Here are the think clouds for readers response:

My goal is to give the students a comprehension question that is connected to the skill that they are learning that week. Another lesson that I learned from last year is that I did not have enough emphasis in reading comprehension. We practiced a lot in reading fluency. But, not enough of reading comprehension and strategic thinking.

I'm hoping that by using a Reader's Response Notebook, think clouds, and chat and go questions; my students will benefit in understanding what they are reading more. It also keeps them more accountable for what they are reading during Read-to-Self while I am meeting with other students for conferences.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

An Award and Newbie Blog Hop

I have been given another award from Lacy at Lacy's Letters. I'm so happy to have received the Versatile Blogger Award!

Here are the rules for the award:

1. Thank the blogger who nominated you and include a link to their site.
2. Include the award image in your post.
3. Give seven random facts about yourself.
4. Nominate 15 other bloggers for the award and include a link to their site.
5. Let bloggers know they've been nominated.

Here are some Random Facts about myself:-
1. I have been dancing since I was three years old! I have done tap, jazz, ballet, and pointe.
2. I have tried out to be a cheerleader for an NFL team (twice).
3. Disneyland is my most favorite place in the world.
4. My boyfriend and I have been together for 3 years.
5. I have 3 pets in my apartment: a hamster named Rosie, a peach-face lovebird named Keen, and a bearded dragon named Spike.
6. I love chocolate :)
7. I love baking cupcakes with my mom.
8. Pinterest is my secret addiction.
9. I struggle a lot with technology (can you tell).
10. I am a huge sucker for animals! Especially dogs.
11. My family is spread across 5 different states--but we are extremely close.
12. I look EXACTLY like my grandmother and great-grandmother.
13. I hate living in apartments.

Now for the nominations:
1. It's Grow Time
2. Second Grade Silliness
3. The Hands-On Teacher
4. Heather's Heart
5. A Cupcake for the Teacher
6. Teach on a Limb
7. The Meek Moose
8. T.G.I.F
9. Learning is Something to Treasure
10. The Picture Book Teacher's Edition
11. Third Grade All Stars
12. Grade Three is the Place for Me
13. Our Future is Bright
14. I Live 2 Learn. I Live 2 Grow
15. Second Grade Sunshine

Now for the Newbie Blog Hop...

Thank you to Janis from Grade Three is the Place for Me! for putting together this great newbie blog hop.

When you join, make sure you share:

1. what state you are in
2. your current teaching position
3. your teaching experience
4. when you started blogging
5. share a blogging tip / blogging resource

1. I teach in sunny California.
2. I am currently teaching third grade.
3. This will be my second (official year) in third grade. I did a lot of volunteer work and my student teaching in third grade. I also have spent some time working and volunteering in kindergarten, 4th, and high school (long-term sub job).
4. I started blogging about less than a month ago.
5. My tip is to do any linky parties that other blogs host! It is a great way to get your new blog some exposure :)

Monday, July 16, 2012

Must Have Picture Books Linky

I linked up with Lindsey from The Teacher Wife and sharing some of my favorite picture books! Here is a list of some of my favorite picture books.
1. The Giving Tree (my ALL time favorite): I always begin and end the year with this story. It has always been my favorite picture book and has inspired the Tree Theme in my class (I'll do a post about that soon!)
2. A Tree Named Steve (catching on to the tree theme): This is a darling story to teach kids about sequence of events. I also used it for a water color lesson :) The illustrations are AMAZING!
3. Roxaboxen: This is such an amazing story to help teach adjectives, descriptive writing, and imagination. I also used this story for a schema lesson and helping my students understand meaningful connections.
4. Wemberly Worried: This is a great story for schema lessons in the beginning of the year when students are worried about starting a new school year :) It is such a precious story!
5. The Best Story: My student LOVED this story. I read it last school year when my students were writing their own stories. It really helped them generate ideas for their stories and where they can find inspiration.
6. Cherries and Cherry Pits: This story is PERFECT for teaching students the "seed idea" part of Writer's Workshop. When I first explained seed ideas to my students, all I saw were blank faces and was hearing crickets chirp. However, after reading this story, my students really started to understand seed ideas. "Cherries and Cherry Pits" is a great mentor text.
7. How I Became a Pirate: This story is not only entertaining the little kiddos, but it also a fun story to introduce "How To" Writing :) All of these stories not only are important mentor texts to help my instruction, but they are also stories that hold a special place in my heart :)