Matt and I are really excited to announce the next phase of our blog – comprehensive guided reading plans!
As we have written about before, teachers shouldn’t have thousands of different books in their library. When classroom libraries are inundated with tons of different books, it becomes overwhelming for both the teachers and the kids. Instead, teachers should focus on having multiple copies of all of the books from the best series. When there are fewer options in a library, there are simply fewer books that we have to become experts in.
However, even when a teacher is able to fill their library with complete series, there are still dozens of books to know and learn. Even then, scripting good questions for the entire book takes hours. With all of our responsibilities as teachers, this is really hard to do on a consistent basis. As such, Matt and I decided to make this easier for teachers by offering guided reading plans. These plans will have several features that we’re very excited about:
- comprehensive chapter summaries
- questions for each chapter that align to a few key skills readers need to master books on that F&P level
- strategy lesson scripts
Matt and I decided to begin this project with one of our students’ favorite series, Dork Diaries. For Dork Diaries, we decided to focus on two main skills – a plot skill and a characterization skill. First, our main character Nikki has multiple problems that each lend themselves to their own subplots. In order to fully comprehend the text, readers need to know which subplots are most important and they need to be able to explain how the different subplots impact one another. Secondly, we decided that Nikki’s internal journey as a character is really prominent in the story and thus this is a great book to teach character change.
Below is an excerpt from the first few pages of the plan.
Matt and I will have our full guided reading plan for Dork Diaries finished and available for purchase within the next few days. Please let us know if this tool would be useful for you and if you have any feedback for us!