Say What? Say Something
Fast-forward a couple of months, lots of idea generating and countless hours of intentional book selection, today my students are fully engaged in their book clubs! I went from a class of reluctant readers to a class of excited readers; simply by changing the way I approached the “old fashioned novel study”. Students are grouped based on their reading abilities and their overall interest in certain books. After twenty minutes of reading (either silently, with a designated reader or by taking turns…choice is important!), students partake in a self-guided conversation about what they have just read – with one simple rule: Say Something! They make connections, ask questions, predict what will happen next and extend their understanding after hearing what their group members have to say.
After conferencing with one of my groups for a second time since starting, I saw huge growth in their overall comprehension and their ability to communicate. I knew these changes were working when a student said, “For once I actually understand what is going on in the book because we talk about it and can ask questions!”
Kate Malayko (@kmalayko), second year Grade 5 Teacher at Nose Creek School, keener and tryer of new things