Reading conferences

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by DrivingPigeon, Nov 18, 2013.

  1. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

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    Nov 18, 2013

    Whoa.

    Today I conferred with students instead of meeting with guided reading groups. It was pretty amazing.

    What I hate about guided reading groups:
    -Too many groups
    -Too many kids in some of the groups, so it's sometimes difficult to listen to every kid during one group time
    -Limited selection of multiple-copy books
    -I choose the books, and the kids don't always like them
    -When they are "whisper reading" they are listening to one-another
    -Some kids read quickly, and are sitting and waiting for the others

    I subscribed to the Common Core Pensieve this morning, and used it during my conferring time. I called kids over who were doing read to self, marked it on the calendar, and took notes on the progress they were making towards their strategy. I then told them they could take their book home to read tonight (I usually don't allow my classroom library books to go home). Their faces lit up-they were so excited to bring home a book of their choice. I felt like I got more out of the 5 minute conference than I do out of a 15 minute guided reading time.

    For those of you who confer regularly, do you ever meet with a guided reading and/or strategy group? How often do you confer with students? At the rate I'm going, I figure I can confer with every student 2-3 times per week. (I'm still meeting with my 2 lowest groups, because they are way below grade level, and need 30 minutes of intervention per day.)
     
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  3. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Nov 18, 2013

    I haven't started conferring yet, but I was planning to this week.

    I am REALLY interested in how you set up your Daily 5 schedule with groups/conferring. How many kids do you meet with per day? I have been giving equal time to all levels of groups and I feel like it's just not working. The lower groups, especially the lowest, need far more of my time. I have 5 students who are VERY low.

    Personally, I don't think i want to get rid of my GR groups all together, but I could see cutting back for more one on one time.
     
  4. Danny'sNanny

    Danny'sNanny Connoisseur

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    Nov 18, 2013

    I did a 50/50 ish mix of groups and conferring in 2nd.

    Now that I'm in first, I'm a little more unsure of myself, and am clinging to my groups. But I'm really hoping that I get a ST for the spring, and my plan is that one of us will confer while one of us pulls groups.
     
  5. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

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    Nov 18, 2013

    Before this week I had 6 groups in the following levels: D, F, H, J, L, and N. I am still meeting with my D and F groups every day (5 kids altogether). We have an intervention/enrichment time, and this is when I meet with my F group. I meet with my D group every day during Daily 5. They still need so many basic skills beyond reading books that I find this necessary. I'm on the fence about my H group (2 kids). I'm going to try conferring, and if that doesn't seem to be working, I'll meet with them in a group 3 times per week.

    So, this is what my Daily 5 time looked like today:
    -Met with level F group during I/E time (25 minutes)
    -Daily 5 time is 1 hour and 15 minutes long
    -I met with my D group for 25 minutes, and conferred with students for about 40 minutes. I was able to meet with 5 kids.
    -I'm hoping to meet with at least 7-8 kids per day once I get rolling. I have 17 kids (not including my level D and F groups). This means I should be able to meet with each child 2-3 times per week.

    I was meeting with guided reading groups 2-3 times per week, so it will be about the same. My conferring time today felt so much more meaningful and focused than guided reading groups. I loved it!
     
  6. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Nov 18, 2013

    Thank you so much for the detailed response!!!

    So when you meet with the D group for 25 minutes and have 40 minutes for conferring, are the kids switching Daily 5 choices at 25/20/and 20 minutes?

    What do you do during conferring? I guess I need to read CAFE...but I figured I would ask what you specifically do. :)

    My groups right now are levels A, B, C/D, I/J (only 4 groups). The A's are VERY low (a couple have IEPs and a couple others cannot blend). And then I've got those 3 I/J kids who are extremely high compared to the rest of the class. I am going to split up the groups. I wanted to meet with them every day, but I'm thinking less time in terms of length and more meaningful meeting time might be the way to go. So the conferring does appeal to me...maybe I'll get a hybrid going...
     
  7. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

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    Nov 18, 2013

    Yes, they're switching rounds every 20 minutes or so. I ring my bell, we gather, they make a choice, and then I meet with more students.

    I don't really know what I'm doing yet (I need to re-read CAFE), but when I met with students today I called them over, and told them to bring their book bin. We then talked about what their current reading goals are. I said to find a good-fit book and start reading. (The big reason I wanted to switch to conferring is because I feel that many of my students are not reading good fit books.) As they read I took notes on my iPad Pensieve, and helped them work on their strategies.
     
  8. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Nov 18, 2013

    Thanks for all your help! I really love this idea. I've got a lot of kids this year who seem to be "hiding" behind the others in their group a lot. I want to know what THEY really know.
     

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