than I would have imagined. Now, I do
get to pop into my preschooler’s classroom and be the mystery reader every so
often. That is pretty wonderful!
crammed onto your plate. How can you get
the most out of this precious time?
Choose your book carefully.
I could pull into another content area.
It was nice to tie in a bit of science or social studies. For example, Flat Stanley is a great
read aloud during your map unit. Looking
to expand kid’s vocabulary? Check out My
Father’s Dragon. So fun and lots of
words for kids to learn!
Choose your time carefully.
like wasted, black holes. Settling in
from recess? Stinky, sweaty time suck.
Coming in from lunch? Noisy, loud and often drama filled in the upper
grades. Packing up at the end of the day?
Book bag and paper chaos! Schedule your read aloud during these times to
force students to settle down and listen carefully. This is a great “transition”
activity for students. It is also a
motivator- most kids LOVE being read to will hurry to get to the next
Model, model, model.
modeling fluency and sneaking in a think aloud. Change your voice to match the
characters, lower your voice during serious moments, and watch your kids get sucked
discuss and debate with higher level text.
Many student’s listen comprehension is WELL above their own reading comprehension. Capitalize on this! Have students explain
their thinking and predict what they think will happen next. I don’t know about you, but I love to talk
about a good book with my girlfriends! Encourage your kids to do so, too!
Let it be the “gateway drug.”
would love? Read the first one, and
watch your kids get hooked! This is especially a great practice at the beginning
of the year. First of all, most students
don’t have a long attention span. You will want to choose shorter books – and many
of these they can read on their own. Secondly, it gives kids a “bank” of desirable
books for their book boxes.
Use it to maximize your reading mini lesson.
read aloud the mentor text for your reading mini lesson. This can keep your mini lessons, well, mini
while still using authentic text. This can be especially effective strategy if
you are “between” chapter book for your read aloud, and aren’t ready to start a
Mandy Gregory is a 2007 and 2012 Teacher of the Year. She has taught 4th, 3rd, and 2nd grade in both the general education and inclusion setting. She is the owner and creator of the Teaching Tips website (www.mandygregory.com) and has over 10 years of experience. She is married with two beautiful children.