Hello! I am switching from third grade to first grade. I loved the Reader's Notebook that I had the students keep during Reader's Workshop. I am looking for thoughts and ideas on how to use a Reader's Notebook with first graders. Does anyone have a Reading Log, Reading Goals, or any other ideas that could be housed in the notebook?
The first part is for their reading responses. I usually print the question of the day ("What was your favorite part of ___?" or "What 3 new facts did you learn about ____?") on an address label. The kids have a routine where they take their label, turn to the correct page in their book (marked by a rubber band) and place the address label on the top margin of the paper, and then answer on the lines below (words and pictures). Sometimes if they're specific questions (like pertaining to a Weekly Reader), that will get pasted into the Reader's Notebook as well.
In the second part of their book (maybe the last third or so), I put their Reading Goals. I have a Reading Goals quarter-sheet that says "My reading goal is ________" with the date (they fill it out on Monday). At the bottom of the sheet, I have a checkbox where the kids check off (self-assessment) whether or not they used their strategy (goal) that week, with the date (they self-assess on Friday). They glue this in their Reader's Notebook, and the page is marked with a post-it so they can refer to it throughout the week. They log books that they read beneath the goal sheet, and I usually have them draw a happy-face or sad-face if they remembered to use their goal while reading that book (helps them when they self-assess, and makes them aware of what they should be doing when reading).
My colleague doesn't use hers for responses, just for reading goals, but she writes them in the notebook. They bring their notebook with them to the guided reading table, and she takes their tablets and writes their goal in it, and then whatever anecdotal notes she makes during the session, she'll record on a post-it, and at the end of a session, she sticks that post-it in their books, and they take it back to their desks. Sometimes she'll have them copy down new words they came across in their reading in their books, too. But it's more like a record of their reading progress, and more teacher-written.
So those are two different ways you can use it! LMK if you want further explaining?
I am going to be new to first grade next year and I am not quite sure what to expect as far as the abilities of my students. I love the idea of a reader's notebook. Do you have any pics or documents you could post with further details of section 2 of your book?
Sorry, I don't think I can upload anything? I'm a new member. But my goal sheet is really, really basic. It's just:
My reading goal this week is
(box) I met my reading goal this week.
(box) I did not meet my reading goal this week.
and that's it. There are four of those printed to a page, so I just cut it in fourths. I meet with the group (or individual), give them a quarter-sheet on Monday when they meet with me, and have them fill out the date and what we're going to be focusing on this week (top portion). They then paste it in their RN, on the top portion of the page.
This leaves the bottom 2/3 of the page blank, where I have them write the date, and the title of the book they read, followed by a happy face, if they used the strategy, or sad face, if not. So it might look like this:
5/12/11 Aunt Jessie
On Friday, I have them fill in the date on the quarter sheet, and I tell them to think about their reading this week--you said you were going to "look for chunks." Did you accomplish this goal? And then they check the correct box. If they say they don't remember, I tell them to look at the books they logged beneath and how they rated them.
At the beginning, I sorta told them what to write (happy or sad face) so they knew what to do. For example, "Oh, you did a good job of chunking on page 3 when you couldn't figure out that word. You found ... in the word and that helped you to sound out it! I think that deserves a happy face, because you are using your strategy to help you be a better reader!" or "Remember when you were on page 3 and I had to prompt you what to do? I had to remind you to look for chunks. Remember, that is your reading goal, because that helps you! I would like to see you do that without me having to tell you, though. So since this is something you still need to work on, put a sad face down, and next time you'll earn that happy face." (in all areas of the school day, I let them know a sad face is not necessarily bad--it just means you can improve. and they always know they have a second chance to get better. so they're not upset to give themselves sad faces--they tell themselves, I can do better next time!)
It's mostly just to get them aware of their goal, and to learn how to self-monitor. We have a resource teacher that will stop kids in the hallway and ask them what their reading goal is, so writing it down and referring to it throughout the week really helps them remember. And it's good practice of metacognition!
Sorry, I know it's hard to explain in words if you're a visual person but I hope I explained it enough since I can't upload. If not, I'll be happy to clarify things. Thanks
I introduce it in the second week of school. The first entry is very simple: "What makes you a good reader?" We would have already made a list of "What Good Readers Do" so all they're really doing is picking one or two, which helps those that are not writers yet, and they can illustrate.
I try to start guided reading groups by week 3 of school--depends on how the kids are picking up the routines of the class. If they're not ready by week 3, then I'll go week 4. The first time we read in guided reading groups, we talk about the purpose and book handling, etc. The second time, I introduce the goals. I have a strategy card that they each have a copy of to put in their bookbags--on one side are the comprehension reading strategies, and the other, the decoding reading strategies. It's laminated so I can star the strategy they are working on that week. To begin with, I give them all the same strategy ("Retell the story.") until, I tell them, I can learn more about them as readers and which of these would be the best to help them.
Our decoding strategies include crispy pointing, stretch the word like a rubber band, look for chunks, try short/long vowel, look for word families, get your mouth ready, and the one I use a lot--"Does it make sense?" (part of self-monitoring).
Our comprehension strategies include visualize, retell, make a connection, predict, evaluate feelings, and stop and think.
I don't have anything for fluency and vocabulary yet. I really want to focus on vocabulary this year so am looking for any ideas on that!
so much for sharing all this information. I've been looking for a way to assess student comprehension...this will help with that. Do you use spiral notebooks for your journals? If so, how do the firsties handle the thin lines? Would you please share other questions you print on your labels?
We use comp tablets for the Reader's Notebook (it's on their supply list). We ask for the wide-ruled ones, but sometimes you get the college-ruled and sometimes you get blank ones or graph paper ones. One of my colleagues "trades" the ones they bring in with those primary journal style comp tablets that she gets at Walmart for real cheap--the kind that has space on the top for them to draw. I just use whatever they bring in, and for those that bring in blank or graph paper ones, I give them a wide-ruled one from my stock of extra books I've collected over the years!
In the beginning of the year, I kinda let them go--they don't need to write exactly on the line, and most don't--they take up several times to write. But by second semester (I tell them it's to prepare for second grade, which gets them all excited), I require them to write on the line, starting at the pink margin line, and going all the way until they run out of room (not stopping at each sentence to go to the next line). They do fine with that, and they like to point out how much their handwriting improved from the beginning of the year.
The question I use a lot is "What was your favorite part of ___? Why?" because it's a question we go over a lot in class discussions (especially the why part) so since we talked about it, it's easier for them to write it. That's when we do fiction in the first semester. When we switch to a focus on non-fiction in the second semester, the question changes to "What did you learn about ___?"
Other questions deal on what we're focusing on:
* setting ("Where does this story take place?", "What do we know about the story from the setting?", "How different would the story be if this was at night?" etc.)
* character ("What kind of person is Tough Boris?", "Which character did you like best? Why?", "Which character are you most like? Why?", "How did the character change?")
* theme ("What is Mem Fox trying to teach us in ___?", "What is the moral of ___?", "What is the main idea of ___?").
* title ("Why is ____ a good title?", "If you could change the title, what would you call it? Why?")
* connections ("What connection can you make to ____?")
* predictions ("What do you think will happen in ___?" after only reading the first couple of pages, "What do you think will happen in the end?" usually used with folk tale genre, or author study)
* language ("What do you think 'lend me a hand' means?" when we are studying idioms, "Write a simile for today's weather." when we are studying similes, "What do you think the word ____ means?" when using context cues)
We also compare / contrast ("Complete a Venn diagram on Koala Lou and Harriet You'll Drive Me Wild.", "How are sharks like dolphins?" after reading NF books on both, "How can you tell Robert Munsch wrote this book?") and start summarizing towards the end of the year ("Retell what happened in ____.") When we do poetry in April, we write our own poems in there.
Hmm, that's all I can think of off the top of my head right now. Most of the questions come from the author & genre studies we do, and all are talked about before they go back to write, through pair shares and whole group discussions. I always tell them, "If you were paying attention, this should be a piece of cake!" But again, the one I use the most is the favorite part one (practically daily for like the first month or so), because it's good practice for their reflection question on the DRA, and it's the leading question of the book discussions they do in partner reading.
The kids share their responses during reader's chair, and as a class we come up with what grade the response should get, using the rubric. It helps the kids see what is expected, and their responses get better over the year as they try to "outdo" what was shared the day before. They're so funny like that.
For kids who struggle with writing, I just have them write as much as they are able to, and then they can come up later and orally tell me, and I'll write it down for them, just so I can monitor that they do understand the book (and it's not the writing that's holding them back), and I have that as evidence for conferences and when I'm grading.
If possible, could you please share the rubric you use to evaluate students (and have students evaluate themselves) on their reading notebook? Thanks again for all that you have already shared! As for vocabulary ideas, have you thought about using CAFE strategies? The vocabulary ones would be the ones that fit under E (expand vocabulary).
Whoops! Sorry! Once school started, I have not had much time to be on this board! But now that it's fall break and I'm looking for ideas on grade books, I saw this. Sorry!
Thanks for the vocabulary idea. I have started using CAFE this year, but I haven't been diligent in using it. We started a "Words of the Week" chart, and it worked great the first week, but kinda petered off since then. I have to start anew for 2nd quarter! Thanks!
For the reader's response rubric, I think I still can't attach yet, so I will type out what we use and kinda describe it. It's just on a half sheet of paper, set up as a table, with indicators in one column, and descriptors in the second column. This half-sheet is glued to the inside front cover of their Reader's Notebook, so the kids can reference it whenever they need. The indicators are same as the ones we have on our standards-based report card: ME = meets with excellence, MP = meets with proficiency, DP = developing proficiency, WB = well below. Again, sorry again for the lateness of this!
Reader's Response Rubric
ME - I answered the question and wrote in complete sentences.
I used powerful details from the story to support my answer.
My response is focused and clear.
Most of my ideas were thoughtful and made a lot of sense.
MP - I answered the question and wrote some complete sentences.
I used details from the story to support my answer.
My response is focused and clear.
My ideas made sense.
DP - I attempted to answer the question but forgot to write in complete sentences.
I forgot to use details from the story to support my answer.
My response is somewhat focused and clear.
Some of my ideas made sense.
WB - I did not answer the question.
My handwriting was unreadable.
My response is not focused and is unclear.
My ideas did not make sense.
Use this rubric to determine if your response is clear, focused, and answers the question. Can your response be improved? Remember, the goal is MP, but ME would be even better!