All Things Upper Elementary · Oct 16, 2013

Getting Started with Guided Reading

Hello again friends, it’s Jen Bengel from Out of This World Literacy! I hope you all are having a wonderful October so far with your students.
I wanted to talk with you all today about getting started with guided reading. It is that time in the school year when we all are finished assessing students and are ready to pull small groups for guided reading instruction.
If you are like me, you may struggle with exactly what is the best way to use this important time with students. Over the years, I have tried so many different approaches, using a variety of note taking forms and lesson plan formats.

I have found that the following lesson format is the best way to cover the most important reading instruction, regardless of the students’ instructional levels:

The Steps in a Guided Reading Lesson:

1.Introduction (2-3 minutes)
i.Decode and define tricky words by bringing students to those words they may struggle with.
ii.Give students background knowledge to better understand the text.
2.Reading the text (10 minutes)

i.Students read the text silently, while the teacher listens in to each student whisper read for a few minutes.
ii.The teacher takes notes on the types of strategies students use to solve unknown words. The teacher may quickly teach a word solving or fluency skill to an individual student.
3.Talking about the text (5 minutes)

i. The teacher has a conversation with students about their thinking and what they might still be wondering about what they just read.
4. Teaching objective (5 minutes)

i.The teacher explicitly teaches one of the learning objectives recommended for students at their instructional level.

5.Word work (3-4 minutes)
i.Some days the teacher may plan to work on a spelling pattern that follows weekly spelling words. Other days the teacher may want to write down a few words that students were struggling with during the guided reading lesson.

6. Assessment Assignment (optional: completed independently)

i.Students complete a graphic organizer relevant to the teaching objective covered during the lesson.

I hope this lesson outline helps you as you are planning your guided reading lessons.
For specific teaching objectives for fiction, nonfiction, and word work on guided reading levels, you can click here.
For guided reading teacher forms click here.
Best of luck to you all who are just getting your guided reading groups going. They are such a great way to differentiate instruction and reach students where they are so that we can move them forward in their learning!!
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