Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Reading Workshop: The Guided Reading Part

The question, "How should Guided Reading Groups really look?" left me thinking long after conversation had ended! While I certainly have ideas in my head derived from reading, watching video clips, and being in classrooms, I suspect sharing resources and ideas about all the aspects of reading (and writing) workshops would be worthy of "featuring" on my blog over the coming weeks.

Guided Reading is not a new idea, that is for sure, and it does not and should not look the same in every grade level: however, understanding a theoretical framework and practical aspects is key to providing differentiated guided practice for students.

Lucy Calkins describes Guided Reading as a way you can take small groups of readers on journeys to talk, think and question the reading process.

  • Small flexible groups (4-6 students)
  • Clear focus - set purpose for lesson
  • Teacher select short texts
  • Similar reading levels
  •  Work in Zone of Proximal Development (Vygotsky)

  • One of the best looks into the windows of an effective reading workshop classroom can be found over at Jennifer Meacham's site.

    There is a wonderful video of guided reading on this site along with a zillion reading workshop ideas and suggestions.

    Lots of resources here:

    Lots of great vidoes here for those of us who are visual learners
    My chart here:
    Traditional Reading GroupsGuided Reading Groups
    Groups remain the same for long periods of time.Groups are flexible and change based on students' needs
    A specific sequence of stories and skills as in basal readers.Short stories and texts; no specific sequence.
    New vocabulary taught before reading. Focus on learning vocabulary through context.
    Worksheets, questions follow reading.Skills practice is part of discussion and guided practice.
    Focus is on the lesson.Focus is on the student.
    Teacher often follows a guide.Many texts chosen based on content or format.
    Questions are often factual.Questions focus on thinking skills and strategic reading.
    Students take turn reading orally (round robin style) Every student reads the entire text; it may be broken into sections to facilitate learning.
    Focus on fluent reading with good expression and phrasing. Focus on guided comprehension and practicing reading strategies.
    Everyone reads aloud while others listen. Reading aloud comes only after silently reading a text and is used to clarify meaning or "prove" answers.
    Fluency during the first reading is the goal. Readers theater, rereading and shared reading are used to build fluency.
    Follow up worksheets and comprehension questions are common. Readers' responses can include questions but typically focus on the strategy presented in the mini lesson.
    Unit tests, book tests. Ongoing assessments such as running records and anecdotal notes.

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