Reading Workshop occurs during a large block of uninterrupted time. It includes both assigned and self-selected books/text that match the student’s reading level. During the reading workshop, students participate in book talks, shared reading and independent reading. Teachers guide the reading through mini-lessons, guided reading, and conferring. Mentor text read-aloud's are the foundation of the literacy framework. Mentor text will be used as a means of modeling and introducing strategies. Simple picture books are often the best means of becoming familiar with how reading strategies work to help with comprehension. Some strategies are: schema, visualization, questioning, determining importance, inferring, synthesis and self monitoring. The Habit 3 time and C.R.A.F.T menu will be incorporated into our literacy instruction. The habit 3 time is the framework of setting priorities, learning to put first things first. Each child will complete the following each day, read-to-self, written response to reading, word work, writing, and reading group which may be a guided reading, a book talk, or conferring.
The C.R.A.F.T menu is our mini-lesson board. C=comprehension, R=respond to reading, A=accuracy, F=fluency, T=text. Students will select an area as their focus for individual reading.
* Fourth graders set a goal of reading 40 books by the end of the school year.
These books are self-selected and should be appropriate reading level for the individual. The books will include a variety of genre as outlined in each student's Reading Genre Study. Every book requires a summary paragraph written to receive credit for that title. Students should seek to pace this activity by setting a goal of 10 or more books per card marking. These books are in addition to the reading material covered in the guided reading groups. Students are given daily opportunity to read but it will be necessary to read daily at home as well to complete the 40 book goal.
Writing Workshop is a combination of writing experiences that occur during the writing block of literacy instruction. This includes both assigned and self-selected writing in a variety of genres and content areas. During workshop, students are engaged in sustained independent writing. Teachers also form small, guided writing groups for specific needs. Students will work in a writer's notebook to practice skills presented in mini lessons. A writer's notebook may also include ideas, rough drafts, or personal writing.
Areas of focus/Units of study: MEAP writing preparation, Prompt Writing, Personal Narrative, Personal Essay, Non-fiction, Persuasive Essay, Author study,and Poetry.
Word Study focuses on how written language is organized and how language “works.” During this time students are actively engaged in explorations guided by the teacher to form generalizations about how words work. There is a daily activity for the weekly word pattern. Weekly spelling lists and testing is not a part of the word study curriculum. There will be unit "spell checks" which are assessed in a variety of ways. These spell checks look to see if the student is learning and applying the word patterns presented in their weekly word work. Students will be actively engaged in developing vocabulary in their reading by looking for new words and working with these words.