ACE Elementary Literacy Newsletter
Elementary Literacy | OCT 2017 YEAR 3: VOL. 2
In this Edition:
Balanced Literacy Focus: Guided reading
Writing: Using mentor sentences
Instructional Resources: 3rd Six Weeks Instructional Calendars
Upcoming PD: ACE Writing Academy
Announcements: K-2 Calendar updates
Balanced Literacy Focus: Guided Reading
This month’s instructional focus in balanced literacy is guided reading.
As we accelerate student learning, we know that we must address grade level student expectations while also targeting students' individual reading needs to close gaps. Guided reading is the best practice tool in the ACE 2x4 to address specific reading needs based on data and raise reading levels at an accelerated pace.
Step 1- Management
K-2: The teacher has established Daily 5 routines that have been practiced and rehearsed. (Ensure that tier 3 students get a full cycle on istation Kinder (20 minutes) 1-2 (30 minutes) for a total of 90 minutes a week.)
3-5: Teacher has planned thoughtful independent practice that supports a previously taught skill and has an organized process for students to log in to istation.
Step 2 - Data
Step 3- Planning for success
Step 4- The Lesson
During reading- Students read the text softly or silently on their own. This does not have to be in unison. Avoid 'Round Robin' reading. The teacher listens in to individual students reading and assists with problem solving and difficult words when appropriate. Students that finish before others may reread a portion of the text. The teacher makes notes about student reading as she listens in.
After reading- Teacher facilitates a discussion with students about what they have read. The teacher asks questions to assess the student understanding of the text. Teacher may ask students to talk with a partner about what they have read or have students take the book to continue reading independently after the lesson.
Step 4- Watch your students grow
Writing- Using Mentor Sentences
Why use mentor sentences?
As students compile a collection of mentor sentences, they can continue to study and imitate them as they write their own compositions.
A mentor sentence routine
Tuesday: Identify parts of speech, “In your journal, rewrite the mentor sentence exactly as it is written, but skip lines in between. Label all of the parts of speech that you know in this sentence!”
Wednesday: Revise the sentence, “Revise the mentor sentence by making it more descriptive or exciting. Try adding or changing adjectives, verbs, or specific nouns. Remember to keep the meaning of the sentence the same.”
Thursday: Rewrite the sentence, “Imitate the mentor sentence by keeping the style and structure the same, but making it your own. You should create a brand new sentence.”
Mentor sentences should be included in your grammar notebook.
Grammar Keepers Chart
Keep the grammar keepers chart easy to access in the cover of the notebook- students could refer to this as they write or work on mechanics practice.
Table of Contents
Keep the table of contents up to date so that students can continuously use their notes.
Grammar Keepers Chart
Grammar notes and practice
Students are copying notes from the teacher's mini lesson on the left and practicing the skill authentically on the right. As students practice, teachers can monitor the room and provide in the moment feedback.
Add a tab toward the back of your notebook for mentor sentences. Students would complete the daily mentor sentence routines throughout the week. As they collect more and more mentor sentences, they can use them to help with their writing compositions.
Don't forget the importance of your teacher model!
Grammar notes and practice
K-2 Schedule Update
- Teachers can mix in small group instruction throughout the balanced literacy block to keep high energy and attention in class
- The updated schedule has two literacy rotations back to back in order to give more time for a group to complete an Istation lesson cycle. For Kinder students about 20 minutes is required to complete an istation lesson, for 1st-2nd about 30 minutes is necessary.
- Remember that guided reading and isip improvement are a K-2 priority!
Hot off the press: 3rd Six Weeks curriculum calendars
When reviewing these calendars, pay close attention to the genre for the week. Select a great mentor text in line with the genre for the week and practice the SE’s listed for each day with that model text. Each week SE’s will be spiraled in and reviewed so that students have multiple opportunities to practice a comprehension skill with multiple texts. Also- use the STAAR aligned question stems in the document to write your DOLs!
The writing template has been updated to reflect an adapted 3 paragraph essay as discussed at the most recent writing academy. The template also includes a possible scope and sequence.
ACE Writing Academy #2
Saturday, Nov. 11th, 9am-12pm
Special thank you to our feeder literacy leads! They are hard at work perfecting their management and transitions during guided reading time.
Independent reading is looking amazing! Isn't it wonderful to see our students authentically engaged in good books?
Ms. Coy at Titche is using the grammar routines and teaching her bilingual students about sentence structure in Spanish. After taking notes, they practiced writing their own sentences on the right side of their notebook as Ms. Coy monitored and provided feedback.