I love Debbie Miller. I love the “Two Sisters.” I love Regie Routman. I love Ellin Oliver Keene. Now I am really sounding like I spend a lot of time in first grade surrounded by 6 and 7 year olds! The reality is, I do love what these reading gurus stand for. I love teaching my students to take a book from their book box and move beyond “word reading.” Regardless of reading level, I love to teach young children to dig deeper into their reading. The connections, the questions, the predictions, the inferences that result are exciting. At times, they bring tears of joy to my eyes!
What do you do, however, when you spend time introducing comprehension strategies in a systematic manner and students still “don’t get it?” I have never subscribed to the thought process of “Well, I taught it. It’s not my fault they didn’t get it.” I feel like if they didn’t get it, then I didn’t really teach it. (Not well anyways.) That’s when I go back to the drawing board. I try to come at it in a different way.
I have been excited this year about QR codes. I love using the app “Show Me” on the iPad to create a video that captures my thinking about something. I have been using “Show Me” to model different comprehension strategies. My students scan the QR code during their independent work on writing time and then practice the strategy on their own.
The QR code doesn’t take the place of my direct teaching, however. They are meant to reinforce the correct way to do something. Students can watch the QR codes as many times as they need to get it right.
It has been fun. It has also saved me some time. I don’t feel so much like a broken record this year.
O.k. So the title of this blog may be misleading. Teaching students to deliberately and conscientiously use strategies to understand and remember their reading better takes time. My goal as a curriculum coach, however, is to help simplify information and give teachers a place to start. I created brochures on each thinking strategy to share with colleagues at my school a couple of years ago. Today I would like to share them with you. If you are interested in adding a shared reading component to your day where you teach students to make connections, ask questions, or synthesize information, this is a place to start. The content is inspired by Debbie Miller and her work “Reading with Meaning.”
*Click on a link below to find the strategy you are looking for. FYI-I created these brochures on my home computer using Microsoft Works. Since we do not have that program at school, I scanned each page in order to share them with you.
metacognition brochuremaking connections and visualizing brochureinferring and asking questions brochuresynthesizing brochure
Are you a new teacher faced with the daunting task of setting up your classroom to teach reading to a group of active children? Or, are you an experienced teacher but interested in knowing what best practices say about teaching reading so that you can quell that nagging feeling inside which prompts you to ask yourself “Am I missing something?” I love reading. I love teaching reading. I love talking with others about teaching reading. And, I am the teacher that I described above. That was until I did a lot of reading about teaching reading and found what the experts had to say on the subject. This slideshare presentation is a synthesis of what specialists such as Regie Routman, Debbie Miller, Donald Bear, and Gail Boushey and Joan Moser say is integral in helping children grow as readers. I hope it helps you get down to the basics and put any worries you may have to rest.