Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Guide to the Reading Workshop: Primary - Chapter 10 Conferring

A Guide to the Reading Workshop: Primary Grades by Lucy Calkins
        *This review includes content from the chapter and content from the discussion

Today's session was led by the very talented 2nd grade teacher, Laurie Justo.  This was my last Book Study session at Chets Creek as I will be retiring at the end of the year (The book study, however will continue for two more sessions).  I missed getting a picture of the group because they surprised me by each presenting me with their own "conference notes" - so many sweet sentiments from some very talented and thoughtful friends and colleagues.

 BIG ideas in Chapter 10
Conferring with Readers: Intense, Intimate, Responsive Teaching
"... it  is through one-to-one instruction that all of us learn to teach."

The Big Goals of a Conference
"...providing a learner with feedback accelerates skill development."

Two Kinds of Conferences
  • Research-Decide-Compliment- Teach Conference
    • Research - listen to the student read (running record or observing), review previous work with student, check in by asking, "What have you been working on as a reader? What strategies have been the most useful? How's it going? What feels tough?" 
    • Decide - make a decision about the one thing that will most help the reading - don't need to finish the story
    • Compliment - offer a specific compliment of something you want the student to continue always
    • Teach - Name your teaching point and teach explicitly - tell the student to sue the teach often giving him a reminder such as a bookmark, giving the student a sticky note to note where he tries the strategy
  • Coaching Conference
    • Intervene lightly as the student reads
    • Decide-teach-link

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Guide to the Reading Workshop: Primary - Chapter 9 Small-Group Work

A Guide to the Reading Workshop: Primary Grades by Lucy Calkins
        *This review includes content from the chapter and content from the discussion
Today's session was led by Tammi Sani, our Special Education specialist, who shared things that work in her small groups.  We met in her small group intervention room.  She shared a video from Teachers' College which we debriefed.  Tammi shares a document camera with another teacher, so when it wouldn't work,
we just switched to watching the video on her laptop!

BIG ideas in Chapter 9
Small-Group Work

Chart from
A Guide to the Reading Workshop: Primary Grades
Kinds of Small Groups
  • Guided Reading
  • Strategy Groups
  • Small-group Shared Reading 
  • Small-group Interactive Writing  
Word Work Inside the Small Group  
  • Look at the phonics skill needs that the small group has in common and warm up with something related in context 
  • We basically have moved word work to the Skills Block, but discussed how sometimes a certain need just jumps out during  the small group work and is appropriate to do right then      
Coaching Tips
  • Choose what and how to teach. Discussion included how poor our guided reading selections are.  
  • Keep your teaching short. Discussion included teachers discussing how to work on keep the small groups shorter - 10 minutes or less.
  • Use familiar texts when demonstrating. Discussion included  how it would help to spend a day going through the guiding reading books that we do have and identify the best skills for certain books instead of trying to do it on the fly, which lots of teachers admitted  to doing.
  • Effectively demonstrate - name the teaching point, enact it, and name what they've seen.
  • Coach kids in their work.
  • Make an appointment to check in and follow up. 
  • Discussion also included teachers agreeing that in kindergarten, they do more one-on-one than small group but more small group work in 1st and 2nd.
Plan with Reading Development in Mind
  • Think about a developmental pathway                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Guide to the Reading Workshop: Primary - Chapter 8 Management Systems

A Guide to the Reading Workshop: Primary Grades by Lucy Calkins
                             *This review includes content from the chapter and content from the discussion

Led by kindergarten teacher Sarah Hawas - to see Sarah's video

BIG ideas in Chapter 8
Management Systems?
"Why do so many people assume that classroom management is a concern for novice and struggling teachers but not for master teachers?"
The importance of structures and systems
  • Reading and Writing mirror each other.  If the structures are predictable, the children can concentrate on the content.
Learning classroom management systems and strategies
  • "The best way I know to learn classroom management strategies is to visit well established reading and writing workshops to study the infrastructure that underlies this kind of teaching."
 Managing the mini-lesson: The beginning of each day's reading instruction
  • Convening the class for the mini-lesson
    • Build a "set up" before asking the children to join you
    • Develop your own signal to get the students' attention and use it consistently
    • Demonstrate -act out- procedure of pushing in chair, make a beeline to their spot. sit, handle materials the way you expect, and begin reading the anchor charts while waiting.
    • Do not repeat yourself.  Expect first time listeners.
  • Establishing long-term partnerships and reading clubs
    • We drew so many different pictures
       and took photographs to identify
      independent and partner reading -
      who knew we could just draw circles?
      Pair students at similar reading levels
    • Back-to-back for Private reading and knee-to-knee-shoulder-to-shoulder with book in between for partner reading
    • K &1 start with private reading and switch to partner reading at the halfway point
    • Clubs are usually two ability grouped partners
    • Club conversations take part during share
  • Management during mini-lessons
    • Mini-lessons are more teacher talk
    • What to do when your partner is absent - join another group
    • Teach turn and talk explicitly 
Managing reading time
  • Sending students off to work: transitions from mini-lesson to work time
    • Teach dismissal explicitly
      Confer app
      Transitions are smoother if children always know where they will sit during reading time
  • Nature of children's work during the Reading Workshop
    • Never done reading
    • "Ask 3 before me"
Managing conferring and small group work: Making one-to-one conferences and small group instruction possible
  • See about 3 children a day for individual conferences
  • Consider table conferences
  • Need a system for who to meet with
  • Develop a system for recording conferences
  • Digit apps were suggested for note taking, Confer and Brightloop
Brightloop app

Managing the share
  • Never skip the share - the brain remembers the last thing
Managing the classroom library
  • Make it easy to find just right books with letter and genre labels
  • Manage how students change out books
  • Gather enough books
Next assignment: 1-14-16 at 8:20 - Chapter 9:Small-Group Work: Developing a Richer Repertoire of Methods, Tammi Sani's room

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Guide to the Reading Workshop: Primary - Chapter 6 Tracking Kids:Progress and Using Assessment to Support Instruction

A Guide to the Reading Workshop: Primary Grades by Lucy Calkins
Session led by Kindergarten Team Leader, Debbie Harbour

BIG ideas in Chapter 6
Tracking Kids: Progress and Using Assessment to Support Instruction

Which assessments will you use at the beginning of the year?

Who is this assessment for?
What will you find out?
Emergent Readers

Concepts about print

Emergent Storybook Reading Stages (Sulzby)

Foundational Skills & Reading Levels

Letter-Sound Identification

Spelling Inventory

High-frequency words

Running Records

Volume, Stamina & Comprehension

Tallies or book logs

Writing about Reading

How will you get to know your readers at the start of the year?
  •  a list of reading levels for incoming students
  •  last running record from the year before
  •  last letter sound identification and/or spelling inventory and high frequency work assessments from the year before
  • end-of-the-year writing (on-demand from Units of Study) from the year before

How will you use running records to inform classroom instruction?
  • Committing to  TCRWP’s QRI system for running records
  •  Making running records an on-going part of Reading Workshop

o   Prepare in bulk ahead of time
o   Create a running record station
o   Have students sit in a line so you can progress quickly
o   Avoid doing more than one running record at a time with the same child
o   Use the old DRA as a back-up text when you are not sure                                      
  • Accuracy -Using MSV for analyzing what systems a child is using – work from what a child can do and use this a jumping off point for what to teach
  • Fluency - At level J begin checking for first reading fluency (accuracy, automaticity, prosody or expression)
  • Comprehension – retelling and answering inferential questions
  •  Use this data for guided reading and strategy groups and also to tailor shared reading, read alouds and Skills Block 
How will you keep notes and anecdotal records? Let me count the ways!

How will you assess volume and stamina?
  • Running graph of the number of minutes the class reads each day
  • Goals with tally book logs for K-1
  • Reading logs in 2nd grade
  • Pulling back as the year goes along to get rid of reading too quickly and fibbing and then bringing them back periodically just to check

How will you assess writing about reading?
  •  Keep student work in their portfolios or your assessment system
  • Begin writing about reading at levels H/I
  •  Use read aloud time for writing about reading, e.g., stop and jot, stop and sketch 

How will students self-assess, making reading goals visible?
  • Talk explicitly in conferences giving students words for what they are doing
  • Use anchor charts
  • Leave a reminder , e.g., sticky note