That means it's time for another holiday, emergent reader. And here it is...
[This is a revised version of this reader. If you have purchased it in the past, you can download the new file for FREE!]
As the literacy coach for my building, I found that the 1st grade teachers were not only willing, but anxious, to meet weekly for a mini-lesson on reading instruction strategies. Their responses have been so favorable that I thought I would share some of the strategies with you.
When working with emerging readers, it is advisable to choose 1 strategy and focus on it until your students show mastery. While I will be covering several topics, you should choose the one that best fits the needs of your students at the time. One of the most valuable lessons I learned in Reading Recovery™ was to avoid the shotgun approach.
High Frequency Word Practice
The text provides practice with the following high frequency words: the, is, on, in, & of. Additional HFW may appear only once, such as inside or between. Some of these HFW may be unknown or partially known. Support your student's efforts by finger masking the new or partially known words. In this example, where inside is unknown, mask the word so that the reader can recognize the known chunk in.
Draw your child’s attention to the picture for a clue as to what the word that starts with in- could be. This practice builds the dual skills of chunking and using picture cues. Should the word inside continue to be problematic, draw your finger back slowly while providing the /s/ sound. If the student still cannot provide the word, simply tell him.
The last word on each page is a noun that may be unfamiliar to the reader. The illustrations provide support for these unfamiliar nouns. If a student balks when he comes to one of these words, remind him to check the picture for a clue.
Or, upon turning to a page with a problematic noun, simply remind him briefly about the word on the page by saying, “There’s the [barn].” Then again, you might point to the picture and finger mask the word so that only the first letter shows. Ask him to say that sound. If that still does not elicit the word, tell the child what it is.
Because the number of words on each page varies, this text provides the opportunity to assess your students’ ability with one-to-one correspondence. To check this skill, ask the student if he had enough words on a given page. Then have him check by pointing to each word as he says them. Ask again, after he points and reads, if he had enough words. On another page, ask if he had too many words. After he points and reads, repeat the question. It is important to make these queries when the student reads correctly, as well as when he omits or adds words. By drawing his attention to this skill, you are giving him the ability to self-check.
It is common for polysyllabic words to be problematic to 1-1 correspondence. Words such as between and pumpkin may entice your student to double point. Or he may get lost in the pointing if he moved on to the next word, but realizes it does not match what he is saying. This is the perfect opportunity to explain that some words have 2 or more beats but still get just one finger point. Again, ask your pupil to check the accuracy of his pointing both when he is correct and incorrect.
Phrasing and Fluency
While emerging readers should not be expected to read fluently, it is never too early to encourage phrased reading. This text offers easy phrasing for young readers. Model the phrasing you desire.
The turkey is / [prepositional phrase].
Staccato reading is a problem that can be difficult to overcome later. Start early encouraging your kiddos to read in phrases.
Have a happy Thanksgiving!
Never give up. Great things take time.
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