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Notebooks, Goals, and Writing About Characters in First Grade

Katie DiCesare confers with a group of first graders about their writing notebooks, goals, and drafts about the characters they are studying during reading workshop.

Teaching Syllable Breaks in Kindergarten

In kindergarten, table groups are a natural and informal way to help groups of students learn new skills through eavesdropping. In this short video from Mandy Robek's kindergarten class, Mandy targets the same skill of defining syllables during individual conferences at the table so that the learning is reinforced for all.

Grouping Struggling Students for Word Study: A Case Study

Shari Frost considers the “go-to” instructional strategy for struggling readers, word study, and explores how to make it work well in a case study of a third-grade group.

Nonfiction Reading Group in First Grade

Katie DiCesare brings together a group of her first-grade students who are reading nonfiction, helping them to expand the ways they share what they are learning with classmates.

Assessment to Grouping: Fifth-Grade Group on Character Traits

Karen Terlecky meets with two fifth graders who both share the same need identified on a recent formative assessment, inferring character traits.

Assessing Learning During Student-Led Book Clubs

When middle school students have choice and independence in book clubs they lead themselves, how do you assess their learning and thinking? Katie Doherty provides a variety of question prompts she uses with groups to spark reflection on learning.

Using Wipe-Off Boards with Young English Language Learners

Max Brand describes why wipe-off boards are such a valuable tool for work with young English language learners in small groups. The article includes a video demonstration.

Guided Reading with Kindergarten English Language Learners

Max Brand takes two kindergarten English language learners from reading a familiar book to exploring a new text, and explains in the debrief how he targets specific reading skills.

Do They Care? Empathy Book Clubs

Do they care? That’s the question Karen Terlecky asks herself as she sets up book clubs in her fifth-grade classroom with a focus on empathy.

Partner Reading: Helping Peers Teach Peers

In this video from Linda Karamatic’s second-grade classroom, two girls meet with Linda to develop tips to share with their classmates on how to partner read successfully.

Found Poetry in Second Grade

Linda Karamatic teaches a small group of her second graders about found poetry.

Inferring Small Group in 5th Grade

Karen Terlecky meets with a small group in her 5th grade class to discuss the strategy of inferring.

Guiding Groups in Middle School: Reading Poetry

Katie Doherty works with a small group of sixth graders who need extra support as they read the poem “Aspects of Autumn.”

Listen In: Strategies for Using Nonfiction Texts in Writing

The line between copying and plagiarizing can be a difficult one for young students to understand.  In this video, Heather Rader and Linda Karamatic share a humane strategy for helping two second graders craft nonfiction writing.

Conferring About Inferring

This reading conference from Katie Doherty’s middle school classroom builds on the whole-class lesson, and demonstrates the value of partner reading for older students.

Book Club Meetings in 3rd Grade

Beth Lawson explains how she sets up book clubs in her 3rd grade classroom.

What is the Content for Small-Group Instruction? (Part 2 of the Grouping Series)

Heather Rader considers how assessments and observations might be used to create flexible groups.

The Five-Minute Solution: Mini-Groups after Minilessons to Maximize Conferring Time

Aimee’ Buckner’s mini-groups are an easy and simple way to differentiate instruction in workshops, and save time when conferring.

Guiding Reading Partners: Work on Accuracy

In this reading conference from a 2nd grade classroom, Linda Karamatic pairs two children who have similar needs in reading.

Middle School Book Clubs: Introduction

Katie Doherty explains why she has book clubs with her 6th grade students.

Middle School Book Clubs: Response Options

Students have different response options in Katie Doherty’s sixth grade book clubs.

Middle School Book Clubs in Action

Katie Doherty talks about the links between strategy lessons and book club work in her 6th grade classroom. Katie also sits in on a book club discussion.

Words and Images: Mentor Texts for Second Grade Boys

In this conference with two of her second-grade students, Linda Karamatic shares mentor texts and tips to help them with their writing. Both boys are writing stories with strong visual components.

Preschool Centers

Centers can be an effective teaching and learning strategy in preschools. In this video, Melissa Kolb shares her rationale for using centers in her Head Start classroom with video examples of centers.

How Do We Know Small-Group Instruction is Effective?

Heather Rader considers how to assess the effectiveness of groups.

Guiding a Struggling Middle School Book Club

What do you do about those book clubs that just don’t gel in your middle school classroom? Katie Doherty demonstrates how she guides a struggling group of sixth graders, helping them reflect and converse together.

Voila! Best Writing and Entry Slips in Second Grade

The word voila in French literally means “see there.” Linda Karamatic puts time and reflection into creating a binder, or “voila book,” that will ease the bulging writing workshop folders and preserve the best of her second-grade students’ writing.

Launching a Book Club in 4th Grade

In this video from Andrea Smith’s 4th grade classroom, students get organized for a small group author study of Andrew Clements.

Guided Reading in Perspective

Cathy Mere puts guided reading in perspective, explaining how it works as one piece of the puzzle when it comes to fostering a lifelong love of reading in students.

Grouping: Who? How Big? How Often?

In this first installment of a series on grouping, Heather Rader considers size, composition, and frequency.

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