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rikybee rikybee is offline
 
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Reading? what reading??
Old 06-21-2010, 08:33 AM
 
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Hi, I'm going into my second year teaching sixth grade and could use some help. I had a lot of difficulty teaching the literature stories and novels. Sure, I had a literature book, but I am at a lost at what to teach with these stories, instead of just doing focus questions. I was wondering if any of you had titles of teacher books that will guide me step by step on teaching reading in sixth grade.

Thanks



Last edited by rikybee; 06-22-2010 at 06:08 AM..
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reading
Old 06-21-2010, 08:41 AM
 
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In the Middle by Nancy Atwell...great book about reader's workshop. I also got the Kagan book about reading cooperative learning, haven't read it yet though so I am not sure but I love the other ideas!!
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Old 06-21-2010, 09:36 AM
 
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Hi Rikybee, I teach an entire unit on the Holocaust. We begin with The Giver then go into THe Devil's Arithmatic. We also go on a field trip to the Holocaust Museum. I go into the History of it also. War and so on. The students want to know so much about what happened they even go on their own and check out more info and share with the class.
It teaches them about racism, getting along with their own classmates. Sticking up for the what they believe.
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Reading
Old 06-21-2010, 01:23 PM
 
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If possible, find novels that you can branch out with other sub-topics. For example, I do Esperanza Rising and we also discuss the Dust Bowl and migrant workers. I also do The Devil's Arithmetic--the kids love learning about the Holocaust. Also, do you have a set of state standards for your assessment tests--you can also use those to plan your teaching.
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grammar & perspective
Old 06-21-2010, 04:26 PM
 
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Grammar, among other things is excellent to teach with short stories, and to an extent novels, which works very, very well with perspective.

After the students have a good grasp on pronouns and subject/verb agreement, start reading short stories. Discuss - told from first person or third person. What pronouns are used as a result. Then have kids retell part of the story from another character's point-of-view - and a different perspective. If the story is from third person - have the kids retell it as another character using first person. Then they can put in other details that the author didn't add and also make comments about the main character.

Students can present these stories using Reader's Theater techniques.

Or, have students keep topic specific journals throughout the story or novel. Here are six I have used at times:

1. mistakes that were made
2. decisions that were made
3. times when people helped others (or got help)
4. sub-plots
5. honesty issues
6. small things that made big differences

etc. Pick the topic so that you know there are plenty of possible entries. After the novel, these give good bases for essays and determining themes.


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Reading lessons
Old 06-21-2010, 06:17 PM
 
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Grammar, state test skills, unit themes pulling together several pieces of literature, and Nancie Atwell's book are all great suggestions. You might also try some Web sites. This thread has a link to Laura Candler's site and also has other suggestions for reading responses which might be helpful:
http://www.proteacher.net/discussion...d.php?t=222552

Here's a thread with a good list of skills and activities:
http://www.proteacher.net/discussion...d.php?t=214527

This one has a menu of reading response choices:
http://www.proteacher.net/discussion...d.php?t=215358

This isn't exactly what you asked for, but you might get some ideas!
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teaching reading
Old 06-21-2010, 07:10 PM
 
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I would start with your reading standards for your state to determine what you should teach. Next, you could check with the seventh grade teachers in your school.

I teach a variety of reading skills and literary elements. For skill work, I like to focus on drawing conclusions and inferencing. Inferencing is a difficult skill because it is a combination of preexisting knowledge and hints from the author. Some of the subtleties of literature are lost on sixth graders because they do not know that the author wants them to discover complex ideas within the story.

I also focus on literary elements such as plot, theme, setting, figurative language, etc. How far you take setting, for example, is up to what is taught in fifth grade and the requirements of your state standards. For example. I know that my students know that setting is about place and time, but how do they learn to figure out "time" within a story. How do they uncover hints from the author? If the story is set in the 1950's how does that impact how a character will react to certain events?

There are enumerable things to teach, but why reteach what they have learned? You need to find out your grade level expectations within your school and district as well as your state. Ideas from us are just what we do, your district should have some type of alignment otherwise your students will just relearn or not have enough background for understanding.
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Reading
Old 06-22-2010, 07:09 AM
 
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I don't teach reading but when I did I used the Fountas and Pinnell (spelling is probably off) book.
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Old 06-30-2010, 09:29 PM
 
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I taught sixth grade language arts for 8 years (now teach 5th). I loved Laura Robb's book Teaching Middle School Reading. It uses readers workshop but is more practical than In the Middle. She also has a new writing book out that I have, but haven't read yet.
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Old 07-30-2010, 12:13 PM
 
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This will be my 3rd year teaching & 2nd year in 6th grade reading. I teach out of a lot of different novels and picture books. Our literature book is so old and boring, I only use a couple of stories and poems out of it.

I used The Watsons Go to Birmingham-1963 this past year with my students. While reading it, we focused on The Civil-Rights movement. I integrated other subjects by looking at the states the Watsons went through on their roadtrip, calculating mileage for their trip, etc.
The Watsons was easy to teach b/c there was a teacher book to go with it (you can buy it online).

We also read A Christmas Carol and then saw the new movie. We talked a lot about character and compared/contrasted the movie and book.

Hope this helps some


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Old 07-30-2010, 12:14 PM
 
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Sorry I forgot to address picture books.

If you haven't read Parts or More Parts, you should. I used those books to talk about idioms and other figurative language.

Also, picture books are great when talking about sequence, compare/contrast, summarizing, etc.
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