Making The Most Of Small Groups: Comprehension

Chapter 4 or our summer book study is all about comprehension.  So , let’s jump right into comprehension and how to make it work in small groups.

Takeaway 1:   These quotes from Chapter 4 of Making The Most Of Small Groups are my first takeaway.  

They were AHA moments for me and powerful reminders that reading isn’t just calling words.  It’s meaning.  Without meaning, there is no reading!

comprehension reading comprehension teaching reading

Takeaway 2:  Comprehension instruction has to be explicit!  

We have to help our students THINK about the text and teach them how to think about what their reading.   This is something that I do well in whole group instruction but not in guided reading.  As I was reading chapter 4 I was definitely having some moments.  Moments of kicking myself for failing my students and moments of clarity on things that I can implement in our guided reading time!

Here are some of the things I will implement:

Use the cover for inferring and predictions!  This gets the kids to THINK before reading!

Giving students a specific thing to think about when reading a page or two.   “Read to find out…..”

Use more graphic organizers in guided reading!

Takeaway 3:   Graphic organizers and schema!

We do a lot of graphic organizers and schema in our whole group so now I’m going to bring that into our guided reading.  This was something that stuck out to me in chapter 4.  Teach it in whole group and then use it and apply it in small groups! However, a lot of the students in this chapter are older and can write more independently.  For graphic organizers I would use laminated ones and do the writing until students can write more independently!

As for schema and background knowledge, we are very familiar with schema because we use scheme maps!

Here is a video of my class creating a schema map!

Takeaway 4:  Having students read familiar books for a couple of minutes before starting a new book!  

LOVE this idea!  This allows you to spend a couple of minutes working with some students while the others are engaged in a book they can read and comprehend!   Definitely implementing this idea!

Finally, using books that students are familiar with is something that I work very hard on.  I also work very hard to pull books that tie into our current theme or unit!  For our guided reading books I use Reading A-Z.  This site gives me access to books at all levels on all kinds of topics so I can find books for each group!

Questions:  Leave your comments and ideas in the comments!  And join us on Facebook LIVE tonight for our discussion on chapter 4 and comprehension!

What are your favorite graphic organizers to use in small groups?

What do you use for your leveled books for guided reading?

What are your favorite anchor charts to use for teaching comprehension?


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