After many weeks of practice, we have settled into a good routine with our Reader’s Workshop. We have four stations and four different reading groups. Students spend about 15 minutes at each station and they visit all four station each day we have Reader’s Workshop. Each station had to be explicitly taught and practiced multiple times before we began learning another. At this point, all the children know where to go, what to do, and how to work independently.
The first station we learned is indicated by the drawing of a person reading a book. This is the reading independently station. Each child has a basket with six leveled books at their reading level and four additional fun reading books that are above their reading level. We refer to these books as our “dinner” and “dessert” books. We need to read our “dinner” books (leveled books) before we read our “dessert” books (fun reading books). Before we begin rotating into our reading stations I teach the children a reading skill they need to focus on during independent reading time. For example, this week we are focusing on pointing to each word as we read a book. Independent Reading time is very important to me because it is when I get to meet individually with students to see how they are doing with their reading and to practice reading skills together.
The second station is Word Work. This is indicated by the piece of paper with writing. At this station children practice their phonics skills by either practicing a new sound we learned, putting together multiple sounds to make a 3 letter word (consonant-vowel-consonant), work on handwriting, or practice writing sight words by creating sight word books. Children are supposed to complete their word work in class while at the station. If they are unable to complete their word work in time, they are expected to complete it at home.
The third station is Phonics Games and it is indicated by the die with letters A, B, & C. This is a station where the children play a phonics game or activity with Ms. Yume. These games vary in specific reading skills and in difficulty. For example, the red group might do a Sorting of Rhyming Words activity while the green group might play Initial Sound Identification Bingo. These activities change frequently and are specifically chosen to help children practice specific literacy skills based on their needs.
The fourth station is reading independently using Raz Kidz on the iPads and it is indicated by the drawing of an iPad with headphones. At this station children independently retrieve an iPad and log into their Raz Kidz accounts and then read books at their reading level. Raz Kids is great because the app can read each book aloud to the child, then the child is expected to read the book out loud themselves, and lastly, there is a comprehension quiz on the book to help the children think about what they just read.
There will soon be a fifth station that will frequently take the place of either the Word Work or iPad stations, depending on current instruction, and it will be called Guided Reading. In Guided Reading, a small group of readers will read a book with me that is targeted for their specific reading level and we will focus on their specific reading skills.
As always, please email me if you have any questions regarding our Reader’s Workshop.