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Kinder Tribe Book Study: The Next Step Forward in Guided Reading Chapter 3

Hello Kinder Tribe!  Amanda here with you today from Mrs. Pauley's Kindergarten.  Like my other Kinder Tribe members, I am so excited about this book study.  I owned the previous version and it totally transformed my guided reading lessons three years ago.  I was amazed at the progress my students were able to make using this lesson plan format found in Chapter 3!

Let's dive in to Chapter 3, The Emergent Reader:  Levels A-C.  When I really get my guided reading groups up and running, I have a couple of groups still in Pre-A and then the rest of my groups fall into this category.

The Emergent Reader lesson spans across two days with each lesson being approximately 20 minutes.  The lessons are fast paced which helps keep your students' attention and you are able to get through quite a bit in a short amount of time.

I love how in the book Jan Richardson has such an easy to follow lesson plan for these lessons.  There is an example one filled out on page 94 or a blank copy on page 309.

Sight Word Review (1-2 minutes) - I use whiteboards and dry erase markers for this because my students LOVED using whiteboards.  You could also use scrap paper and markers.  Choose familiar sight words and always review the most recent sight word you taught.  I also try to find words that the students will encounter in our new book that are familiar words to review.

Book Introduction (3-5 minutes) - When introducing the new book, here are the steps you can follow:
1.  Provide a synopsis - Sometimes I even write out exactly what I am going to say so I don't forget
2.  Preview and predict - Have students make predictions about the illustrations and draw their attention to important information.  You do NOT need to discuss every page.
3.  Introduce new vocabulary - If you have to introduce more than 5 words, then the book is too difficult for that group.
4.  Practice new language structures - You can turn to a specific page and read a sentence to the group and have them practice it with you.
5.  Encourage cross-checking - I love that Richardson included a chart to help you provide students just what they need for this (check it out on page 74)

Reading with Prompting (8-10 minutes)- During this part of the lesson, the students are going to individually read the book while you confer with students.  My students know that if they finish reading the book they need to go back and keep rereading it until I am finished with my conferring.  Once again, Richardson provides us with the language for prompting.  You can find a chart on page 76, but she also includes it on her blank lesson plan.

Discussion Prompt (2-3 minutes) - Engage the students in a meaningful conversation about the story.  I know that some of our books have simple story lines so sometimes we can use the text and characters to make personal connections.

Teaching Point (1-2 minutes) - On the lesson plan page, there are options for you to choose from for this part of the lesson.  This teaching should be QUICK and CLEAR.  She provides with a chart of activities on page 77 that matches a goal with a demonstration.  I am so thankful that she has provided us with all these little "nuggets" of information.  It makes planning for my groups so much easier.

Teach One Sight Word (2-3 minutes) - For this part of the lesson, you will want to choose a sight word from the book that is new to the students.  My students love this part of the lesson because they get to do some of their favorite activities.
1.  What's Missing?
2.  Mix & Fix
3.  Table Writing
4.  Write It
You can read about those here.

Word Study (3-4 minutes) - For this, you can choose activities such as picture sorting, making words, or sound boxes.  Many times I would have students do their Words Their Way sorts with me during this time.

As you can see, many of the activities in Day 2 are the same or similar as Day 1.  Let's go through the new activities for Day 2.

Sight Word Review (1-2 minutes) - This is the same as Day 1 except you want to review the new word you taught on Day 1 with the other review words.

Reread Book with Prompting (8-10 minutes) - Today students will work on reading the book with fluency.  You can use those prompts from Day 1 again to differentiate for your students.

Discussion Prompt (2-3 minutes) - This is the same as Day 1, but you would want to have a new discussion about the book.

Teaching Point (1-2 minutes) - Once again, this is the same as Day 1.

Reteach Sight Word (2-3 minutes) - Follow the same procedures as on Day 1.

Guided Writing (5-8 minutes) - For this, you want to choose a sentence that is an appropriate length for your students.
Level A sentence should be 3-5 words
Level B sentence should be 5-7 words
Level C sentence should be 7-10 words

Then follow these steps for the activity:
1.  Draw a line for each word
2.  Confer, scaffold, and teach - allow the students to work at their own pace
3.  Focus on spelling - prompt students to say the words as they write them

Once you are finished with these two days, you will want to reflect on the book and take a look at what your next steps should be.

Was this book too hard, too easy, or just right for the students?  What should the next focus be for this group?  Which students do I need to take a closer look at?  What will our next book be?

I can not stress enough how much this format changed my teaching and how successful my students were because of it.  When I started this format (three years ago this winter), I have 3/4 of my class below grade level on their Fountas & Pinnell benchmark.  By the end of that year, with my change in instruction, almost all of my students made the kindergarten benchmark.  It was amazing and still brings tears to my eyes when I think about it.

Hop on over to our Facebook group and let me know what questions you have about Chapter 3!

Kinder Tribe Book Study: The Next Step Forward in Guided Reading Chapter 2

Hello, Kinder Tribe Friends! This is Kelly from My Fabulous Class. I am so excited about this book study. I own the previous version of this book, but decided to purchase the updated version and I have here to tell you, it is worth it!!! I think the layout is easier to follow, there is new information, and I LOVE the spiral bound pages. If you haven't gotten the book, I highly recommend it.You can find it on Amazon HERE.

Today, I am talking about Chapter 2, The Pre A Reader. How many of your kids are in this category in the fall? When are they expected to be out of this stage? I would say, 50-75% of our Kinders fall into this category in August. It seems to vary year to year. The expectation at our school is to be out of this phase by October.

I know from talking to many of you, Pre-Guided Reading lessons can be a challenge, Jan Richardson does a great job of laying out exactly what you should be teaching and for how many minutes.

 I think we all start are year off with having students work with their names. Jan says to spend 1-2 minutes working with their names. She suggest using name puzzles, magnetic letters or rainbow writing.  I like to make these simple name puzzles and have all of students work with building their names. I have created this FREE Editable Name Puzzle. You can download it here.You can get the Editable Caterpillar HERE. It comes in color and black and white. I recommend printing it in color without any letters. Then, you can reuse them year after year. You can cut the circles with a 1.5 inch circle.

In the book, Jan provides several examples for working with letters. She suggest picking one activity and working on it for 2-3 minutes to help build automaticity.

I have always been a fan of matching letters to an alphabet chart. I have been known to do this everyday with my lowest kids. You can find this alphabet chart HERE. Jan provides several activities specific to the alphabet chart. I like asking students to find the letter that you here at the beginning of ______ (insert word from alphabet chart).

I really like the idea of asking students to lay out the letters in their bag and simply naming them. Fast and easy, yet so beneficial.

Jan recommends doing 1 sound activity a day to teach phonological awareness.

Clapping syllables is great for building phonological awareness. At first, you will clap with students, but the goal is for them to do it on their own. You can find this syllable activity here.

Hearing rhymes is also important. In the beginning, you will say two words, such as pig and wig. Students will repeat the words then give you a thumbs up if they rhyme.

 Segmenting words into onset and rime will help students to distinguish the ending sounds. You can find these activities here.

Sorting pictures is another way to work on sounds. I start with picture cards and put the letter cards away. In the beginning, I will just layout 3 picture cards, two with the same sound and one that is different. I slowly name the pictures, then ask student which two start the same. 

Once you are ready to introduce letters, Jan suggests starting with two consonants. Pick ones that are meaningful to the students in your group, such as the letter in their first name. You can find both of these activities here.

 Jan talks about doing a picture walk with a book. I know some teachers skip this, but it is CRUCIAL (in my opinion). First, your supporting students vocabulary. Second,you are helping build confidence by previewing the story. After you preview the book, Jan says to do shared reading of the book. Essentially, you corral read with your students. Finally, you work on concepts about print. I like to have students find a letter in their name and find a sight word we have worked on. Other concepts include first and last word, one and two letters, punctuation, and upper/lower case letters

For your Pre-A students, you will focus on share the pen. I like to dictate a sentence related to the book we are reading. Students draw a line for each word (was this in the old book? I have not been doing this!) Use the alphabet chart to help write letters that they here or know. Select one or two letters for letter formation. Cut up the sentence and have students rebuild it.

I created this Pre-A Guided Reading unit. It includes the activities I featured in this post, plus many, many more. I will be adding black and white pages by the end of the week to meet your printing needs. You can buy now, and get the updated version FREE. This unit will remain on sale for 50% off for the remainder of the book study. Enjoy!

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Before I go, I want to remind you to enter our Kinder Tribe Giveaway. You could win a gift card to TPT valued at $100!!! Enjoy!!!

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Kinder Tribe Book Study: The Next Step Forward in Guided Reading Chapter 1

Hello KinderTribe friends! Heather here from Learning with Mrs. Langley and I am thrilled to introduce a new opportunity for some summer reading and professional development. The Kinder Tribe authors have come together to review The Next Step Forward in Guided Reading by Jan Richardson. Over the next few weeks we will review a chapter and spark some conversation about what steps to take to start or improve guided reading in your classroom.  Here is the schedule: 

June 5: Chapter 1-Guided Reading Essentials
June 12: Chapter 2- The Pre A Reader
June 19:  Chapter 3- The Emergent Reader
June 26:  Chapter 4 -The Early Reader
July 3:  Chapter 5- The Transitional Reader
July 10:  Chapter 6- The Fluent Reader
July 17:  Chapter 7- Comprehension

I am going to get the ball rolling with Chapter One: Guided Reading Essentials. Even if you feel like you have a good handle on what guided reading is and you are just looking for ways to revamp your existing routine, don't skip this chapter. It really lays out the ground work for the rest of the book.
What is guided reading?  "Guiding reading is small-group differentiated instruction that supports students in developing reading proficiency" (pg. 13 Jan Richardson)

The main components of guided reading are pretty simple. They include:
  • small group instruction
  • slightly challenging text
  • targeted teaching
There is always room for improvement but I think I have a pretty good handle on the small group instruction (see how I group HERE) and targeted teaching. However, I never really feel confident in picking the right leveled readers so I am excited to expand my knowledge in that area...and like I said, there is always room for improvement! 

Richardson also points out that guided reading is just part of a balanced reading program. In addition to meeting with small groups students should be experiencing literacy in many different ways. Read-alouds, shared reading, and independent reading are all important pieces to the puzzle. 

Teaching independence "As you prepare your students for guided reading, you will need to establish firm routines for working independently or in small groups." (pg. 16 Richardson). 

Amen! It's all about independence in our classroom from the very first minute we walk through the door. Procedures, procedures, procedures is my mantra for the first few (actually about 6) weeks of school. Richardson has a great layout of how she teaches routines on page 17 of the book. I love how it is broken down!  

So many ideas! There are so many amazing ideas in this chapter to get you going with literacy activities like buddy reading, writing, word work, and listening to reading. There are some (new to me) ideas listed that I am going to try and add to our Daily 5 choices.

Common Questions Each chapter has a section at the end for common questions asked by teachers. I love when authors add these in because I usually have had one or two of the same questions while reading. It's like instant gratification straight from the author! 

Videos Probably the BEST part of this book if you are a visual learner like I am. There are links to videos throughout the book that show Richardson in action modeling the teaching techniques. Amazing right?

So here are a few questions that I have after reading this chapter: 

What elements of guided reading do you already have established in your classroom?  Do you have small groups already working effectively? What do you want to work on? 

Interested in reading this book? Get it HERE and read along with us. We will follow up on a new chapter every Monday. Here is the schedule: 

 Follow KinderTribe on FB for even more great conversations with kinder teachers just like you!

Thanks for stopping by Kinder Tribe today. Here is a little planning page FREEBIE for you if you are wanting to get started with guided reading in the coming year! I made it editable so you can type the names right in. Thanks friends! 
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Closing Out 1 Year & Planning For Next Year (+ a FREEBIE)

Do You Do This At The End of The Year?

... with these cute graduation certificates.  Click the image for the download.
You get a pre-school, pre-kindergarten, transitional kindergarten, and kindergarten certificate AND you also get a blank one so you can fill in anything you want!

Your kindergarten students will love singing this graduation song to the tune of "It's A Small World"
and the pages make a great big book! Click the image for the download.

Students can add small school photos of their friends to their bus.
Click the image for your FREE template.
Just paint the top of the egg cartons, download and print the FREE bus template, and pass out the tiny school photos you get each year. A fun project to decorate the room for your graduation.

For Father's Day: Students write the first name of their dad, grandpa, or any other significant person in their lives.
You make 10-20 copies to create a stack of notes. Wrap with cellophane & twine. Always a hit!
Click the image for the download.

And The Beginning of Another:

This is my most popular product!Attach a cotton ball and it's ready for your parents on the 1st day of school.
Click the image for the download.
You still have a day to grab my "All About Numbers 1-5" at a 50% discount: CLICK HERE
Click the image above to set all of the templates, ideas, and activities for #s 1-5.

The BEST End of the Year Kindergarten Celebration

It's As Easy As 1, 2, 3 (or maybe 4):

1) Make A "Good-bye" Gift: 

(And a FREEBIE poem!)

My Crayon Candle & poem project is an awesome gift your students can easily make to give to their parents.  There is even a version of the poem for any children who might not be graduating. And the best part is that this is a FREE download!
Click the image above.

All you have to do is let the children break and unwrap their fat primary crayons and drop them into a glass baby food jar. Remember to label the bottoms of the jars with their names. I like to do this with masking tape because it is sometimes hard to read the names when this project is done, even if you use a dark colored Sharpie. 
Click the image above. 

After the kids fill their jar with crayons, slide a birthday candle into the center of each jar. This is a lot less expensive than buying candle wicks. It might take a little wiggling, but you can get the candles in. 

Last, after school, melt some paraffin wax and pour some into each jar. I like to use my home-hand wax machine. It melts the wax and I can easily ladle it into each jar. Let them sit overnight to cool.

I like to roll up this poem and tie it to each candle. My students gave these to their parents at the end of their graduation ceremony.

You can grab this FREE poem by 

2) Perform a Cute Song: 

For your parents or just for the school. This song can be sung to the tune of "It's a Small World".

Just print and glue to construction paper (12" X 18") to create a big book that you can use to teach your Littles this cute song
Click the image.

It is sung to the tune of "It's A Small World" which you can download (an instrumental version) from iTunes.  
Click the image.

I like to bind my big books at the bottom (landscape style) so all I have to do is push the current page down with my thumb and let gravity allow the page to drop, exposing the next page. Then, I'm not fiddling with turning pages while the children are singing. :)
Click the image.

You can grab this song by

3) Dazzle your class with a cute End of the Year certificate:

Click the image.
Check out these fun end-of-the-year certificates. These CUTE graduation certificates are Ready-to-Print for Pre-school, Pre-Kindergarten, Transitional Kindergarten (TK), and Kindergarten.

You even get a blank copy so you can fill in any special program you might have. 
Click the image.

You can grab your copy by


Perfect to serve at your celebration!
My students LOVED these!

Just cut bananas in half, cut a slit for the grape, add grapes and you're done!

I hope you like these fun ideas. 
Do YOU have any cute ideas that you do with your class? 
Share your End of the Year ideas below for our readers! 

See you all on the 30th of next month!