When it comes to Guided Reading programs, the standard practice is to run a 15 to 20-minute lesson wherein students run through a few warm-up exercises, read a book (or parts of a book) and then finish off with a short concluding activity. Although learners are moving through a lesson, they don’t necessarily see how everything connects. But what if they could? What if there was a way to increase student engagement during Guided Reading lessons and ensure they understand the purpose of each activity presented to the them? Interested in learning how? Learn the simple steps one can follow for creating a student planner that will do precisely that!
In a previous article, a teacher template for Guided Reading lessons was shared, as shown below.
Using the above template as a base, we will demonstrate how any teacher planner can be transformed into one that students can use to follow along during Guided Reading lessons.
Step 1: Decide on Relevant Information
When looking at the teacher planner above, you will notice that not all information is relevant for learners, so the first step is to decide what to include on your student planner. For the purposes of this article, we are going to go with objectives, activities, and strategy checks as areas of importance.
Step 2: Reword
The next step in the process entails the rewording of certain terms so that they are student-centered and understandable. For example, “Objectives” can be changed to “I can” statements, “Activities” can be changed to “What we will be doing” and “Strategy Check” can be changed to “Strategies I used.” In this way learners will be involved in every step of the lesson and able to comprehend the planner.
Step 3: Design the Student Planner
With a clear idea of what should be on the planner and how it should be written, the design of the student planner can begin. Based on the information we deemed relevant for learners and our rephrasing of terms, we have come up with the template below.
With regards to filling in the above student planner, the teacher would complete the “What we will be doing” section by listing activities that will be covered during the lesson – for example, providing a brief description of a game that will be played, questions that will be discussed, and the book that will be read. Under the “I can” section, a checklist could be provided by the teacher for students to see the skills they will need to demonstrate during each part of the lesson, i.e. identifying capital letters, punctuation, etc. And lastly, the “Strategies I used” column can be used for students to evaluate reading strategies they used during the lesson, such as looking at the picture, sounding words, etc. And in doing so, although the student planner may have a different layout and altered wording, the template mirrors the objectives set out by the teacher planner and empowers students in their learning.
Step 4: Implement the Student Planner
When it comes to the implementation of the student planner, before beginning each lesson, the teacher would go over the expectations and outcomes listed on the template, and at the end students would be required to evaluate themselves on skills they demonstrated and comment on areas for improvement for the next lesson. In this way, during each phase of the Guided Reading lesson, learners will be active participants.
As you can see, the creation of a student template for Guided Reading lessons is a simple process that significantly benefits young learners who are beginning to read! Interested in Guided Reading templates for your school or classroom, but feel you might need extra support? Contact us, we’d be happy to help!
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