A Balanced Literacy Approach to Reading and Writing

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1 A Balanced Literacy Approach to Reading and Writing

2 The teacher makes thoughtful choices each day about the BEST way to teach what students need to become skillful readers and writers based on data. Includes phonics, word study, grammar skills, reading and comprehension strategies, and writing forms and skills. When children are given direct instructional support and a variety of daily reading and writing experiences that are needed in the complex process of becoming independent readers and writers.

3 READING COMPONENTS FOR A BALANCED LITERACY PROGRAM Shared Reading Interactive Read Aloud Independent Daily Reading Small Group Instruction (Guided Reading, Partner Reading, Skill Groups, Book Clubs, Conferences) Word Study (phonics, grammar, mechanics, spelling, vocabulary)

4 SHARED READING Shared Reading is an interactive reading experience that occurs when students join in or share the reading of a big book or other enlarged text while guided and supported by the teacher. Students observe the teacher reading the text with fluency and expression. Shared reading gives an authentic reason to practice skills and strategies.

5 TYPES OF SHARED READING MATERIALS Big books and lap books Text projected on smart board Poetry Songs Morning message Classroom news

6 INTERACTIVE READ ALOUD Teachers choose Read Aloud books to build students knowledge about a theme or content area, or to model a particular comprehension strategy. Teachers choose vocabulary words to explicitly teach and mark spots that are ripe for questions and for thinking aloud about reading comprehension strategies. Teachers plan when to pause reading to model thinking aloud to demonstrate the thought processes that good readers do when reading text. Teachers plan when to leave open space for accountable talk, (turn and talk to a partner), record thinking/thought process with use of post it notes, etc.

7 INDEPENDENT DAILY READING Students engage in self-selected texts at their independent level. Students use this time to practice what good readers do and apply skills previously taught during the mini lessons. Students read in book nooks around the room while the teacher holds individual reading conferences or meets with small groups of students for guided reading, strategy lessons, or book clubs. Students are held accountable for reading through their reader s response notebook, graphic organizers, partner reading, post its, etc.

8 THE STRUCTURE OF THE READERS WORKSHOP - (45 minutes) Whole Group Mini Lesson (10-15 minutes) Small Group Instruction (30 minutes) (Guided Reading, Partner Reading, Book Clubs, Independent Daily Reading, Skill Groups, Conferences) Whole Group Share/Closure (5 minutes)

9 Whole Group Mini Lesson Readers Workshop begins with a whole group mini lesson which lasts approximately minutes. During each mini lesson, the teacher teaches a specific reading skill or strategy, also known as the teaching point. The teacher will model or demonstrate the skill for the students. Students actively engage in practicing the skill. TIP: When using mentor texts to model reading strategies, teachers should refer to or ONLY reread small excerpts of a text that has been previously read aloud. Read Aloud is SEPARATE from a mini lesson. The longer the mini lesson lasts, the LESS time students will have to practice the strategy on their own, with partners, or in small group.

10 Small Group Instruction is the HEART AND FOCUS for reading success in West Orange

11 GUIDED READING Guided Reading is when a teacher pulls students who are all reading on the same level together so they can read books at their instructional level. Guided Reading groups are dynamic, flexible, and change. All students are actively interacting with text at their independent level to construct meaning. Skills such as phonics, word study, vocabulary, grammar, mechanics are embedded. Questions are prompted to develop higher order level thinking and strategic reading. Students respond to literature through writing extensions and authentic activities. Assessment is ongoing and embedded in the instruction.

12 Research says The BEST way to move a student in reading is to teach them at their instructional reading level.

13 PARTNER READING Pairs sit together shoulder to shoulder reading the same book or a different book, reading one page at a time, then engage in a brief question and answer session to confirm comprehension. Improves fluency, reading rate, word attack skills, builds confidence, and helps students monitor their own comprehension.

14 BOOK CLUBS Students read the same book and meet in small groups to discuss the book. Teacher facilitates the discussion but ultimately the students are in charge of their book club. Students discuss their thoughts and opinions of the book and are encouraged to interact and comment. Great opportunity for students to experience new kinds of genres and collaborate/discuss with peers.

15 THE STRUCTURE OF THE WRITERS WORKSHOP (45 minutes) Whole Group Mini Lesson (10-15 minutes) Small Group and Independent Writing (30 minutes) - Skill Groups, Peer Editing, Conferences Whole Group Share/Closure (5 minutes)

16 SHARED WRITING The teacher models thinking aloud as he/or she writes, so that students see how a good writer s thought process works. Students participate by listening to the teacher s thought process. Students speak in partnerships or in whole-class discussions, trying out writing skills and strategies with the teacher s assistance. The teacher acts as a scribe with student participation and collaboration.

17 INTERACTIVE WRITING The teacher composes an enlarged text with the students. Students participate by writing parts of the text. The teacher and student SHARE the pen. The teacher writes what is too easy or too difficult for the students. At the end, teacher and students have produced a text that is conventional (spelling and punctuation are correct).

18 BREAKDOWN OF TIME NEEDED FOR BALANCED LITERACY (45 Minutes) Readers Workshop (45 Minutes) Writers Workshop (30 Minutes) OUTSIDE of the Readers and Writers Workshop Phonics, Word Study, Daily Edits, Daily Writer s Notebooks, Interactive Read Aloud, Shared Reading, Shared Writing, Interactive Writing, Language Instruction, Vocabulary

19 HOW DO WE MAKE WORKSHOPS WORK WITH LESS TIME? Teach a new mini lesson every other day or every two days. Shorten small group work, one on one instruction on days when you are teaching a new mini lesson. Keep sharing and closure to a minimum.

20 IF short on time, what do you do? MAKE SMART CHOICES On days when you are teaching a mini lesson, possibly give up the read aloud. Possibly teach word study/language lessons every other day. Tuck in language every morning as a quick Do Now through Daily Edits.

21 TO CONCLUDE A Balanced Literacy Approach to Reading and Writing creates a positive, collaborative, differentiated, STUDENT DRIVEN, literacy environment where the onus of learning is on the students.

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