struggling readers

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by teacherhoosier, Feb 2, 2019.

  1. teacherhoosier

    teacherhoosier Companion

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    Feb 2, 2019

    I am a first grade teacher (have been for the last 8 years). I've noticed the last few years, I have a group of kiddos each year that just don't seem to grow much as readers throughout the year despite being met with every day for guided reading group and receiving pull-out interventions separately. I have a group of kiddos that came in this year at Bs and Cs and are currently reading Ds/Es. I have tried everything I can think of in my toolbox of tricks, but nothing seems to be clicking for these kiddos. Hopefully we will see progress soon. .Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks!
     
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  3. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    Feb 4, 2019

    Have you tried making something into a competition? I'm not familiar with guiding reading levels. What if you had them set a goal that they are trying to reach, such as reading a certain passage under a specific time limit? You could give them rewards for meeting their goals, even things as simple as writing with a colored pen for the day or sitting with a special stuffed animal. Everyone loves recognition for working hard.

    I get where you're coming from. I've got a group of students like that too, although older. It's maddening when you're working so hard and their results don't show it. For some of my kiddos, it's that they find the assessments boring and they're not motivated to try their best.
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2019
  4. Teacher234

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    Feb 4, 2019

    You could maybe try RazKids.
    For students who have shown little progress in my class, I work individually with them on a different activity.
     
  5. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    Feb 7, 2019

    Typically when students don't progress, there's some underlining issue (if you can exclude lack of sufficient reading practice as a factor). Do you notice any behaviors that might lead you to think something else could be impeding progress? How are you measuring growth? Accuracy rate and comprehension? What assessments and tools are you using to assess?
     
  6. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    Feb 7, 2019

    Typically this is true, however it's getting harder and harder to exclude lack of sufficient reading practice. Many of my students who are not making adequate progress simply find reading boring and therefore don't want to do it. I'm very good at motivating children to read normally, but I'm not sure as many homes are encouraging reading as much as they could be for young children. Electronics have rewired their brains. Reading books is just not holding some children's attention as much as it should be, which is terrible sad. I have some good students, smart kids, who will sit and stare and look around and play with paper and need extremely consistent reminders to keep reading. I even notice, myself, that it takes a solid ten minutes at least for me to really get into a book. We're a very distracted society these days.
     
  7. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    Feb 7, 2019

    I teach Reading Workshop, and I will say that I love Calkin's play-like aspect that she incorporates into reading. For example, students go on book games (alphabet pop it, snap word hunts, guess what's next, etc.), match their voices to the characters, and even act out their books. It's an appropriate energy level for this age group, and so very interesting that it really grabs them (assuming they have a say in choosing their text). May I ask what program or method are you using to teach reading?
     
  8. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    Feb 7, 2019

    I teach upper elementary students, but I use a basal textbook. My lessons are fine, I can make them interesting with no problem, but they have to be able to do the boring stuff for state tests so it has to be practiced sometime. I have a few smart students who don't show growth like they should on computerized tests because 1) the tests require reading on a computer screen, 2) the topics are unengaging for them, and 3) the tests are more of an endurance test than anything, as they need to stare at a computer screen and keep engaged for upwards of two hours.

    Our curriculum also has pencil/paper tests and I see a direct correlation between interesting stories on tests and higher scores. If the test story for the week is interesting to them, they'll do fine. If it's a boring story, they will not score well.

    I would love, love, love to teach with more of a readers workshop type format. My school is very focused on test scores.
     
  9. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    Feb 7, 2019

    That's really unfortunate. Is the problem then more of a matter of students not actually performing on the tests where you believe they actually are? My personal feeling regarding basals is not a good one. I think student choice positively affects motivation and motivation is a huge factor in student progress. Basals leave little room for that. Is this a trend you are seeing across your grade level and/or grade levels?
     
  10. Teacher234

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    Feb 9, 2019

    In response to @otterpop
    I dislike schools that are focused on test scores. Getting a high test score on one test one day is NOT the same as learning efficiently. Just like, getting a low test score does not mean the student learned very little. I just had to say this, in general, not referring to you.
    I really like readers workshop formats, although it does not work for my current class. If you do want to teach like this, maybe you could do stations (that cover the content for the big waste of paper (I mean, state tests)).
    Example of Stations:
    -Reading Comprehension (Read a passage and answer questions on task cards.)
    -Annotating Passages (Read a passage and annotate it. Provide a lot of color!)
    -Written Response Question (Read a passage, write a response, have a peer review it)
    -Independent Reading (use flexible seating)
    -Independent Writing (free writing and topical writing)
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2019
  11. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    Feb 10, 2019

    [/QUOTE]

    In what ways do you feel workshop is not working for your current group of students?
     
  12. Teacher234

    Teacher234 Cohort

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    Feb 10, 2019

    In what ways do you feel workshop is not working for your current group of students?[/QUOTE]
    I have three different grades to teach. ELA workshop would not work due to the fact that each grade needs a different lesson (reading, writing, grammar/vocab/ELA enrichment). In order to run ELA in my classroom efficiently, I have to use ELA rotations. I do set aside 15 minutes daily for independent reading time.
     
  13. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    Feb 18, 2019

    I have three different grades to teach. ELA workshop would not work due to the fact that each grade needs a different lesson (reading, writing, grammar/vocab/ELA enrichment). In order to run ELA in my classroom efficiently, I have to use ELA rotations. I do set aside 15 minutes daily for independent reading time.[/QUOTE]

    Can the teaching points be taught within your reading rotations, then? Assumably, that's what you're already doing; you're already teaching to their needs in each rotation.
     
  14. Teacher234

    Teacher234 Cohort

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    Feb 18, 2019

    Can the teaching points be taught within your reading rotations, then? Assumably, that's what you're already doing; you're already teaching to their needs in each rotation.[/QUOTE]
    I am typically able to cover all parts of the lesson within the ELA rotations. Some days, I do not do ELA rotations and give a quiz.
     

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