As a teacher, and like many of you, I like to read about new strategies to use with my class and incorporate these new ideas. If this wasn't true there wouldn't be Pinterest and so many wonderful teacher blogs out there, right?
Before Christmas/winter break, I incorporated some new strategies with my resource reading class. Several of my ideas came from the books Reading Without Limits and Word Nerds.
1. Intensive Vocabulary Instruction: I use the vocabulary from our weekly store to expand the vocabulary of my students. If you'll remember, I use Reading A-Z to find my weekly stories and they have rigorous and engaging vocabulary for each story. One idea I picked up from reading Word Nerds is how to introduce and teach vocabulary to my students.
I follow this plan for vocabulary instruction:
1. Introduce words in pocket chart (if our story has six words for the week, I will do 3 the first day and 3 the next day. I never introduce more than 3 or 4 words a day)
- My turn, Your turn: I say the word and the student repeats me
- Count syllables: We all say the word while clapping the syllables. The students hold up fingers to match the number of syllables in the word.
2. Using cloze reading procedures, the cards and sentences are displayed in the pocket chart. Students try using the words in the sentence. They use context clues and process of elimination (if they do not know the words) to best complete each sentence. There is only one best answer for each sentence. The student tells me the word that goes in the blank and then gives me reasons why that word is the best fit.
3. After all words are included in a sentence we check the sentences to see if they make sense. This is when I give the definition on the words, that are printed on the back on the word cards. Students then confirm or correct their word predictions.
Students use the iPad to find definitions and synonyms for the vocabulary words. They also search for images of the words to help them draw an illustration.
4. Using the vocabulary journal (below) students complete a graphic organizer to define the word clearly. The organizer contains the word, an illustration, the definition, synonyms and antonyms of the word. All of which we discussed during the vocabulary lesson.
Want a vocabulary notebook for your students? You're in luck! These are available now at my TPT store.
2. Buddy Fluency: When my students come into my classroom, they know that first thing they need to do is grab their buddy, their fluency passage for the week, and an iPad, go to the computer to use an online timer (HERE is a good online timer), and a digital timer. Students use the first 5-7 minutes of our group time to do timed readings. Each day that they read they are trying to beat the previous day's time. They really get into this! So simple, but they love it. The are so excited for themselves and each other when someone beats their previous time.
3. Raz-Kids: Each of my students has a RAZ-Kids login. The students use RAZ during read to self time or during a center rotation. RAZ kids teacher interface allows me to differentiate for each student. I can assign reading assignments or assessments (including running records) to each student. My kids enjoy using RAZ Kids on the iPad and working at their own pace. It is rewarding to them to see the stars they earn for reading books and taking quizzes and the teacher portion of the program lets me see what my students are struggling with and what I need to work with them on individually.
On a personal note:
As one of my New Year Resolutions, I mentioned wanting to get on a regular blogging schedule. I have assigned each month of the week a different topic.
Week 1: Reading
Week 2: Math
Week 3: Social Skills/Emotional/Behavior Topics
Week 4: Special Education Related
You have just read Week 1 (and let's be honest---I didn't post this in the first week of January, so this week you'll get reading and math!) And here is a little bloggy button to commemorate this event!