Guided Reading Galore!

I've had many questions about guided reading!  Let me start by saying, I'm NO expert. I am still working on it myself! But, I do have some things I've learned that I'd love to share with you...and I'm not taking credit for these ideas. :)  I just blog about em'!

1. Levels/Planning
Once you establish the level of each of your students, you'll want to check out {this} printable. It has helped me SO much!  This printable tells me what I need to work on with each level {I did not create this handout, I just re-typed it!}.

Click {here} for the download

Once you know what your kiddos need, you'll put them in groups. I know you've seen this before on our blog, but this is for our new friends that need ideas. I used velcro so that I can easily move them from level to level and so that I'd have a visual of where my students are.

Here is a guideline from my district on where your students should be throughout the year. Keep in mind that we are in a trimester schedule so it might be different for you.
Click {here} to download

2. Running Records
We are asked to do one running record in each group, each day. It's a little overwhelming and I try my best to get it done, but I'm  I know it's helpful because it let's me know when a students is ready to move a level without doing a formal assessment, but I just like listening to all of my students in the group, not just one.  Uggghhh.... I'm working on it people!

I keep my running records in a guided reading records binder {check that out here}.

Click {here} for the running record form

If you've never done a running record, it's really best to see one in action.  I did find a good site for a general overview of running records {here}.

2. Anecdotal notes
Sometimes you notice things that your students are doing, but you're not doing a running record on them...but you need to remember to address it. I just keep a sheet of address labels on my desk and jot down the problem. Then, I stick it on their tab in the binder on this little printable:
Click {here} to download

3. Planning
In my guided reading packet on TpT, I explain the planning steps of guided reading, but here's a tip that's not in my packet.  When teaching a guided reading group, I always have a word work activity planned.  To organize all of my games and ideas, I've put them all in a binder.  The games are all copied on cardstock and put in a page protector {then they can be stuck in the binder AND they can be used with a dry-erase marker}.  Then, I separate them with tabs so I can easily access them. The tabs are comprehension, word work, vocabulary, fluency, and I think that's it.

4. Mini-lessons
I use my whiteboards or my games from my binder in my lessons just about every day. They are perfect for word work mini-lessons. I just take into account the skill my kiddos need to work and/or what I see in their book for that day.  If the book is called "Star Fish", I might work on the sound of 'ar', or I might work on the digraph 'sh'. OR, I might just see what they need to work on and it might not have anything to do with the book.
Teach Kinder or 1st Grade? 

Teach 3rd Grade?

5. Management
I use the Daily 5. I modify it to make it work for me and my students. It's the best system that is a balance between keeping the kiddos engaged AND having them do meaningful things while I'm working with groups.  Check out their site for more info. Another bonus...after you've set up all of the expectations with your kiddos the first month or so of school...there's really nothing else you have to do with it {I do revisit the expectations every month}.

Schedule Cards:  Stephanie Stewart
Alphabet: Up Front Decor

6. Time
This one I can't really help you on. It's up to you to make time to do guided reading. I know that sometimes it's out of your hands, but it's VERY important you meet with your kiddos everyday {it's required in our district}.  Even when it's during assessment time, I try to at least get in one group that day {my lowest group for sure}.  My district is really big on the "2-a-day" plan. Basically, during assessment time, only test 2 students a day. This is in place of "test all the kids in 3 days and that's it" method I like. I'm not a fan of the "2-a-day", but some of you might be.
I use this printable to help me decide when I'm meeting with each group.  If you have a lot of groups, you won't be able to meet with every group, every day. BUT, it's important that you meet with your below level kiddos EVERY day {even Friday...gaspppp....}.  So, this helps me remember what day I meet with what group {here's an example of what it would look like}:

Click {here} for the download

7. Books
I am so fortunate that I teach in a district that is HUGE on guided reading. We have a giant room full of guided reading books for ALL the levels.  It's basically a library just of guided reading books. It's heavenly. If you are short on books, there are numerous grants out there that can help! Click {here} to find out more. You can also use the books on reading A-Z.

I hope I answered all of your questions. :) For more ideas and to see our previous posts, go {here}.

Any other ideas? Tips?
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