First of all, I purchased two new books this weekend. I've been using Pinterest or my own ideas to create all of my Work on Writing ideas for the rotations that my students do while I'm working with my groups. While it's nice to create my own materials to meet my students' needs, it's also very time consuming. So, I'm excited to be able put these resources to use in my classroom. Unfortunately, I already have the next two weeks worth of rotations planned out so I won't be able to put my new books to use for a few weeks.
I've also been comtemplating the place of guided writing during my small group reading times. Writing is a huge component of reading and literacy. So, my question became, "How much writing should I do with each group?" I see two of my groups at least 4-5 times per week. However, with the other three groups, we only meet twice per week. I decided to conduct an experiment of sorts with my guided reading groups this week. I decided to keep the same book that we read last week for all of my groups. This week we would solely be concentrating on writing activities related to the book we read last week. Some of the activities I'm planning to do with my groups include vocabulary word work (writing definitions and sentences), completing a five finger retell which will lead us into writing a full summary, and completing a cause and effect flow chart.
Another issue I've contemplated is: how do I grade the guided reading and writing that I do together with the students? I do grade the students on a few of the activities that they complete independently during their daily five rotations, but I don't take any grades for the time that they spend with me. My problem is, we spend a LOT of time reading and writing together and this leaves little time for independent reading. The term guided reading and writing holds extremely true for me and my students because I want to guide them to be better readers and and writers. I will say that I have managed to get plenty of reading grades each week, I just wish there was an easy way to give a grade for what we are doing during our guided reading groups. I think I will use this weekend to look through my guided reading books and the guided reading websites I've found to see what they reocmmend.
Finally, I've learned that I absolutely LOVE guided reading and my students do too!It's not often that students come back to read