As a teacher, you know when something is working and when something isn't. Right now, Reader's Workshop is just not working right in my classroom. I love Reader's Workshop. It is my favorite time of the day. I love reading aloud and teaching a mini-lesson, I love working with kids in small groups and I love hearing about what they are reading when we re-group. However, the independent reading portion just isn't working for my students right now, so I knew I needed a change.
That's when The Daily 5 came to my mind. I read the book by "the sisters" way back when we started Reader's Workshop in our district. It seemed like a great idea but not something that I was ready to tackle yet.
I also thought, way back when, that I needed to follow every program step-by-step and to the T. As a more seasoned teacher, I realize that that is sooo not true. I need to adopt programs to best help my students.
I think that my students could greatly benefit from a modified version of The Daily 5 this year. Here are a few of my ideas that I plan to start with this week.
I plan to have three rotations during my Reading block. I know that letting students choose their station is a large part of The Daily 5, but I created a schedule for my students to follow, at least in the beginning.
During each rotation, I will be meeting with a group of students. The other students will be at a variety of stations. Some groups (especially my stronger readers) will stay at the same station for more than one rotation.
1. Read to Self
Students will be able to choose a spot in the room to read independently from their own book bags.
2. Read to Self (Fun Spots)
In my classroom, I have a few "fun" chairs for the students to sit in. I know that I, personally, love to read all curled up with a pillow. I have bean bag chairs, pillow chairs, and a beach chair. At this station, the students will also be reading independently from their own book bags.
3. Read to Someone
My students love to read with a partner so they will be able to read and discuss books with someone from their group.
4. Listen to Reading
A big part of becoming a better reader is to listen to others read. I have many, many books on CD from my Scholastic book order. I am in the process of acquiring portable CD players so that students can choose a spot in the room to listen to reading. I also have an iPod with a few books on it. We also have a few books on tape, but the tape players are about 50 years old, so I may get rid of that part. We have two larger CD players, but I moved the listening center table to use somewhere else in the room, so I haven't figured out where I am going to set those up!
We use Study Island at our school to track student's progress and to help them with concepts in reading and math. I have 6 computers in my classroom now (woohoo!), but it can still be a challenge to get the students on their to practice when there is so much else going on during the day! I plan to have each group go on Study Island once a week.
6. Read with a Teacher
The last station is to meet with the teacher. This will also hold me more accountable to meet with each group. I created the schedule to revolve around my students who are struggling the most, but with the flexibility to meet with each group throughout the week.
This is definitely going to be a work in progress for me. I have been doing a lot of research of other blogs to help me. Here is my Pinterest board of Daily 5 ideas that I have slowly began gathering items on: