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Sunday, April 21, 2013

Whatcha Readin'?

In my room, I make a point to read "Chapter Books."  Some teachers get into a series, A-Z Mysteries & Magic Tree House, but I enjoy introducing a series or author for them to enjoy on their own later!

Many of my colleagues are surprised.  In my undergrad lit. class {AMAZING professor, Dr. Swaby} I was told/encouraged to read aloud a book 2-3 levels above the children's frustration level.  This makes sense to me, since I am decoding the children deepen listening & comprehension skills via my reading of these QUALITY texts.  I have read: The BFG, Trumpet of the Swan, Pipi Longstocking, The Lion, Witch, & the Wardrobe, Ramona The Pest, Esperanza Rising, City of Ember, Mrs. Piggle Wiggle, Charlie & the Chocolate Factory, Mary Poppins, A Tale of Desperaux, The Enormous Crocodile, Where the Red Fern Grows, Hoot, The Lightning Thief, Matilda, NO TALKING!, & The Wonderful Wizard of Oz - to name a few.  Some of these books were read to me in elementary school & I fell in love with the characters and authors then - so I'm paying it forward, now that I have my own classroom.  Reading such great literature has prompted some great instructional moments in my Kinder, 1st, & 5th grade rooms: on vocabulary, questioning, & making connections - to name a few!  And, we usually conclude the units with a "movie party" to compare/contrast the books & movies - the kids really enjoy the movies.

So, I purchased a fun pack - It All Started with a Pig about Charlotte's Web & put the response journals to work.  I wasn't sure about their success in Kindergarten, but gave it a shot.  And guess kids - LOVE. THEM.  Plus, it's like a comprehension check/assessment every day!

I am sold.  I am doing reading response journals for all my read alouds going forward & I found some freebies to make my own Wizard of Oz response pages (& I'm thinking of having an Oz themed room for next year - GASP!).

I am so excited about this I looked on TpT for more novel studies.  I found some promising ones that I've yet to read aloud {I linked the TpT pages for you to find the units, if you're interested}:
  1. The Lemonade War - Funky Fresh Firsties
  2. Freckle Juice - In That Room
  3. My Father's Dragon - Krista Mehrtens
  4. The Cricket in Times Square - Teach with Tracy
These were just some that I added to my TpT wish list.  Now, once we're finished with that lovely pig, we'll be on the search for a new read aloud novel.  I wonder what the 4 corners vote will reveal?!?!

Miss Kristan King

P.S. If you have similar units for sale or are familiar with some GREAT ones not mentioned above, let me know/link a comment - I'd LOVE to check 'em out!!

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