How many? How often? How to assess? What's the teacher's role? We share flexible and creating strategies for leading groups, and teaching students how to partner and work well with classmates independently. Resources include everything from planning and assessment forms to scores of video examples of groups in action at many grade levels.
Beth Lawson explains how she sets up book clubs in her 3rd grade classroom.
Heather Rader considers how assessments and observations might be used to create flexible groups.
Aimee’ Buckner’s mini-groups are an easy and simple way to differentiate instruction in workshops, and save time when conferring.
In this reading conference from a 2nd grade classroom, Linda Karamatic pairs two children who have similar needs in reading.
Katie Doherty explains why she has book clubs with her 6th grade students.
Students have different response options in Katie Doherty’s sixth grade book clubs.
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.
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.
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.
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.
In this video from Andrea Smith’s 4th grade classroom, students get organized for a small group author study of Andrew Clements.
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.
In this first installment of a series on grouping, Heather Rader considers size, composition, and frequency.
Heather Rader synthesizes recommendations and provides examples of how grouping structures work in classrooms.
Heather Rader considers how to assess the effectiveness of groups.
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.
Jennifer Jones explains how one team of second-grade teachers formed guided reading groups across classrooms to marshal resources and expand their collaboration.
Shari Frost updates her original essay on guided reading with her latest thinking and criteria for placing students in guided reading groups.
Paul Hankins describes the power of pairing high school and elementary students in a partner reading program.
Katie DiCesare becomes reacquainted with an old curricular friend. But in trying reader’s theater again in her primary classroom, she finds ways to streamline the process and foster more independence in students.
The gap between a child learning a phonetic rule and actually being able to apply it is one that often vexes teachers. Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan find systematic planning and routines for focused small-group work help many of their colleagues succeed in their phonics instruction.
Reading groups are such an ingrained element of our teaching culture that teachers can feel guilty if they choose other instructional methods. In this conversation with fourth-grade teacher Rachel, Joan Moser and Gail Boushey (“The Sisters”) talk about when it makes sense to group students.
We want students to discuss books in thoughtful, sophisticated ways in book clubs, but those skills don’t always come naturally. (Wait – do those skills ever come naturally?) Beth Lawson explains how she confers with individual children in her third-grade classroom to prepare them for independent book clubs with peers.
If you’re considering guided reading groups in your kindergarten classroom, you’ll want to read Mandy Robek’s advice for getting started and keeping track with a simple planning and assessment form.
In this video of a 1st grade guided writing group, Katie DiCesare works with children to address common issues with spelling and conventions. By grouping the students together, she is able to use her time well in addressing common needs among students.
In this second video in a three-part series, Jennifer Morgan leads her grades 3 and 4 students as they work together in small groups on a science and writing task.
When does level matter in grouping students for reading instruction?Â Â Franki Sibberson shares her latest thinking and a template to use in organizing groups.
Karen Terlecky brings lessons from her adult book club to her structure of book clubs in her 5th grade classroom. The article includes launching and management tips.
Shari Frost writes about the “Level A Purgatory” many kindergartners and young students endure when teachers assign reading groups too early. Her feature includes other instructional options beyond small groups for early in the year that may be more appropriate for our youngest learners.
Franki Sibberson uses a knitting analogy to reflect upon alternatives to guided reading in the intermediate grades that promote more student independence.
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