5th grade guided reading

Discussion in 'Fifth Grade' started by amh1819, Jul 29, 2017.

  1. amh1819

    amh1819 Rookie

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    Jul 29, 2017

    I am going to teach 5th grade this year at different school. At the school that I previously taught, I taught 5th grade but the school did not incorporate guided reading in the ELA block after 3rd grade. The school that I'm going to this year requires guided reading groups in the upper grades as well. I taught first grade before so I've had experience with guided reading groups. In first grade, I worked with one group, my TA worked with another group, and the other groups rotated learning centers. Sometimes it was so distracting because the kids at their centers would have questions or get into arguments. Does anyone here do this in 5th grade? Would you recommend students rotating centers or reading independently while I meet with groups? I know 5th graders are more independent, but sometimes they act like taller first graders!
     
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  3. Obadiah

    Obadiah Groupie

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    Jul 29, 2017

    I've seen this done several ways. Traditionally, (and a for a few years I was even required to do this), the students do worksheets, the next spelling book page, the handwriting page, and perhaps a math page while the other two groups are meeting. One teacher I know follows this rule: No one disturbs her during guided reading. If you have a question, quietly ask a neighbor. I've also seen centers used in conjunction with seatwork; of course, then you have some kids rushing through seatwork to get to a center. Donalyn Miller in The Book Whisperer recommends emphasizing independent reading in the classroom; (by the way, I highly recommend this book).

    Personally, I prefer for students to choose from a set of activities. Independent reading would always be one of the choices. Other choices I might prescribe could be a writing activity (journal writing, writer's workshop if a quiet corner of the room is available, creative writing), buddy reading (again if can be done quietly), math investigations (such as in New Zealand "whole maths"; a multitude of investigations can be discovered with Pascal's Triangle), independent research on a topic of interest (one time I spotted a trio of 3rd graders sitting on the floor each searching their dictionary for an interesting word and then sharing their findings), a chosen worksheet from their packet of worksheets (but my homemade worksheets are not typical--for example, I've had worksheets about a science craft or investigation, worksheets from other English speaking countries that use alternative words than American English and therefore are more like a fun puzzle to solve, worksheets that go deeper into a subject we're studying, even coloring activities), or again, a learning center. I limit my choices to 3 or 4 and those are the same choices throughout the year or quarter; (for upper grades I might add more variety as the year progresses, but I find that consistent activities promote consistent behavior. I had one principal write on an observation how each student knew what to do and did it).

    Notes:
    Miller, Donalyn. The Book Whisperer: Awakening the Inner Reader in Every Child. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2009
     
  4. Obadiah

    Obadiah Groupie

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    Jul 29, 2017

    Sorry, off the subject, but your post reminded me of a funny story that happened during a 5th grade guided reading class, my first year at that school. My reading group used a required basal reader, and one story was based on an excerpt from a book. The author of the rewritten excerpt excluded various important details and frankly, since I had never read the book, I had no idea what the story was talking about! To top it off, the illustrator must not have read the excerpt, because the picture was the exact opposite of what was happening in the story. I decided, rather than skipping over such an inept example of literature, reading it would promote a worthwhile discussion of what details we needed to know in order to properly understand the text. To my surprise, the students understood the excerpt perfectly, and proceeded to explain it to me.

    I asked, "How do you know all this information?"

    They replied, "We all saw it in a movie at school last year!"
     
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  5. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    Aug 2, 2017

    I would have them do independent reading while you are meeting with groups. It's the easiest for you and the most beneficial for them. You can always make a modification for an individual student or two if they are struggling readers or have behavioral issues (e.g. have them use RAZ Kids instead of independently reading a book).

    Keep in mind that some schools use the term "guided reading" to include other things, such as book clubs or strategy groups. In fifth grade, it's likely that most of your students will be ready for those as opposed to traditional guided reading.
     
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