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In-School Reading Logs - abandon?

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allyssa47 allyssa47 is offline
 
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In-School Reading Logs - abandon?
Old 08-21-2016, 04:49 PM
 
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For the past 6 years in 3rd grade I've been using reading logs in the classroom following Scholastic's Beth Newhingham's approach to Reader's Notebooks. My main goal is for students to become lifelong readers. I've always felt like part of a reading life is keeping track of and remembering what you read.

I've used in-school reading logs as a tool for both me and my students. Logs give me an idea of what my students are choosing to read, especially because I can't confer with them as much as I'd like. Ideally I'm able to see the titles they're reading, the genre, the date they've finished, and whether they felt the book was easy/just right/challenging. I can look for patterns in their reading and see if they're finishing books as well as how long it takes them to finish.

On the student end, they can look for the same patterns and use them to reflect. We also have used the logs for goal-setting. From goals to read specific books, genres, or a certain number of books.

These logs have been part of our Reader's Notebook. The rule is that students add the title when they begin a book, and fill out the genre code, date completed, and E/JR/C when they finish. Ideally this should only take a minute. I model constantly throughout the year, keep my own log, and give daily reminders. They have at least 20 minutes of independent reading time a day, some days up to 45. No logging is done at home.

I've never had them turn in their logs regularly for accountability. I check them when I can and we take time as a class or small group usually once a week to update if they've fallen behind.

The problem: keeping the logs updated is a CONSTANT struggle, especially for my lower readers who often read many short books in a day. The kids who tend to keep up with it are my readers who love to read. The others tend to see it as a chore instead of a reflective tool. We emphasize the importance of making time for reading and getting into the "reading zone." A lot of students see this log as a distraction from that zone even though it is only meant to take 30 seconds to 1 minute a day. It has become something that takes away from reading for some.

So....to keep reading logs or abandon them? If I keep them, how do I maintain accountability and help my students see the value of the logs? If I abandon them, how do we reflect on our reading lives and how do I track what students are reading?

This has been on my mind for awhile and school starts this week! Any thoughts/research supporting or against is much appreciated!


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Old 08-21-2016, 06:59 PM
 
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I don't use Reader's Notebook.

I can't imagine trying to enforce students writing down what they read. Time sucker indeed.

I don't write down all the books that I read. I don't know that I understand why it is important for kids to write theirs down, either.
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Welcome
Old 08-21-2016, 07:19 PM
 
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I see you are new to Proteacher and the third grade board. Just wanted to welcome you.
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Old 08-21-2016, 07:25 PM
 
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I think you can differentiate the use of logs. Your avid readers don't need them, but you can confer with them weekly to track their reading. Your critical readers may find it rewarding to see/write down books they're reading (at their level....something you picked with them).

On another note....Logs are tough to manage and I find that sometimes my students were not honest.
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Welcome
Old 08-22-2016, 02:56 AM
 
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I always did reading logs because I needed documentation for a district reading challenge.


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Old 08-22-2016, 04:37 PM
 
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I don't use reading logs either but wanted to welcome you.
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Partners
Old 08-22-2016, 04:49 PM
 
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I don't know if this is closely related, but I am trying to think of a way that students could have partner journals...One student would write about what they are reading, and then the partner would get a chance to reply (ask a question or comment) and write about his/her own book.

I am having a much bigger class this year than last year, so I thought this way I could just check the partner journals every other day or once a week. And they wouldn't have to do it every day. I don't know for sure!
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Good Question
Old 08-23-2016, 11:44 AM
 
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Welcome Allyssa47 - this board is a great place for resources.

I've struggle with the reading log debate myself. I still use a simple reading log for HW each night w/a comprehension question (generic/free choice). I'm required by my P to have a reading log.

However, this is what my partner & I tried last spring. We used this in class to support Free Reading (DEAR time). It worked well & I'm going to implement it again this year:
- Students sign out their book from the class library on a recording log (1 for entire class;i.e. Name, title, date out/date returned). This way I can quickly keep track of my speedy readers and my super slow "milking the system" readers.
- Next, for each chapter the student reads they must complete 1 activity from a Comprehension Choice board. (I found a Free one from TPT). I make sure to model each activity from our read aloud books before they can choose that activity. The students are required to keep their work in their Classwork folder until they finish the book.
- Lastly, they turn in their book (sign it back in), hand in their work.

It's a win-win because I have less to monitor but have a great way to assess comprehension. The students like the freedom to choose their comprehension activities. It naturally differentiates and allows those that speed read to slow down (each chapter) to demonstrate comprehension. My slower readers can work at their own pace.

Hopefully, this helps or at least offers another way
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I use
Old 08-24-2016, 03:45 AM
 
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I use a reading log in school but I have changed it up a bit. At the beginning of each month, I have the students create their own reading goals, usually 2-3 goals. These goals include how many books they may read, reading a specific genre, working on a specific reading goal. They also graph the genre they have read. My P likes that the student is becoming responsible for their learning by creating their own goals. In this, they also get to try new genres. I look at their logs every month. They get a sticker for each goal they meet. It's a quick way for me to look at what they are reading and also keeping track of their overall book goal of 25 books/year.
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Welcome Allyssa
Old 08-28-2016, 07:02 PM
 
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Welcome to proteacher community.


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allyssa47 allyssa47 is offline
 
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Thank you!!
Old 08-29-2016, 05:43 PM
 
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Thank you so much for your warm welcome and suggestions! I've been a member for years but haven't ever posted! It's interesting to see how many of you have requirements dictated by your principal!

I'm going to try a year without the logs I've traditionally used. Instead I'm going to combine a few of you suggestions. I've set monthly goals before but I'm going to be more diligent with them this year and students may log some titles as part of those.

I will also work in comprehension projects on choice books (like the Comprehension Choice Board" throughout the year.

This is a big step for me but I think it will be a good one!

Thanks so much for your suggestions!
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