Mr. Greg, why do you use decodable readers? is a question we’ve been asked so today we’re sharing how and why we use decodable readers as part of the TKS BOOTCAMP Curriculum.
Decodable Readers: District Mandates
As teachers, we all want to grow and improve our craft. I don’t think I’m ever very good at teaching but I am always open to learn and grow and try new things. In our district, we had a few years where the push was all guided reading. Over the last two years, that push has switched from guided reading to explicit phonics instruction. This move allowed us more freedom and flexibility with our small group instruction time. We could now do phonics based small groups as well as pull guided reading groups.
During this time, we were also being pushed to use decodable readers with our groups. This was a bit new for me (I knew about decodable texts and had used them some, but to focus on them was new…) because our focus had been on guided reading with leveled texts. In order to continue using our TKS BOOTCAMP curriculum as our phonics curriculum, we needed to add decodable readers. So that is why the decodable readers were added.
Decodable Readers: Why?
One of the biggest keys for students success as readers is confidence. Decodable readers help boost the confidence of our readers. And if a child feels like a reader, they will be better readers. Decodable readers or text allow students to decode words and be a successful reader. Because decodable readers contain so much decodable text it allows students to apply and practice the phonics skills we’ve taught in whole group lessons during our BOOTCAMP phonics time. Decodable readers are a key part of the systematic, explicit phonics instruction that helps our students succeed as readers and writers!
Decodable Readers: The Features
When I created and wrote our decodable readers, I wanted to include decodable text as well as some text that students could use their other reading strategies to figure out (context clues, inference, looking at pictures, etc). And because the focus is on decoding words, the books are written to be silly and non-sensical. Our decodable readers are not meant for comprehension.
On the front cover, we included the phonics skill we’re teaching. This allows a very quick review or refreshers of the skill.
For each decodable reader, there are four options: there is a simpler version and a more challenging version. Each version is available in color or blackline. This gives you some options when working with students so you’re better able to meet their needs as readers.
At the end of the decodable reader is a writing page. Here students can apply their phonics skills to write the words. All of the words contain the focus skill or pattern.
Decodable Readers In Action
Check out these videos to see our decodable readers in action!
TKS BOOTCAMP CURRICULUM
The decodable readers are included in our TKS BOOTCAMP curriculum which is a systematic, explicit, research based, classroom proven phonics and math curriculum. For more on TKS BOOTCAMP, visit our TKS BOOTCAMP page!
For more information and to purchase the TKS BOOTCAMP CURRICULUM, click the image below!
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