The district just adopted a new reading series K-5 called Journeys. An anchor text will be used to teach the skill and strategy focus for the week. A paired text will be read and students will compare the two texts to each other. The rest of the week students will be involved in small group work, as well as, independent reading. Students will be practicing the skills of the week throughout all of their reading experiences. Vocabulary, comprehension lessons, and writing about reading will be the main focus within the weekly lessons.
Students should read independently every day. They will be participating in a 40 Book Challenge this school year, in which they are expected to read at least 40 books. I know 40 books sounds like a lot! I think you will be surprised how quickly the books will add up once students commit to reading at home and at school. There is a great deal of research regarding the amount of reading students do and achievement levels.
We will cover different skills in grammar weekly, which students will have a chance to practice before the test at the end of the week. In addition, students will have a spiral review of grammar skills through mentor sentence analysis. A sentence will be taken from the anchor text of the week and will serve as our sentence to learn from. We will thoroughly analyze the sentence- dissecting parts of speech, looking at sentence structure, noticing the format and most importantly practice writing that type of sentence. Many students learn grammar skills, but don’t understand the connection to writing. The focus of grammar instruction will be the writing connection.
Students will be doing a great deal of writing! Writing will be taught through the writing workshop method. Lessons will begin with a mini-lesson which focuses on writing skills or writing instruction, then the rest of the time students will be involved in writing. Writing conferences will take place to focus on strategy instruction.