In Reader's Workshop, students read daily and study the different skills necessary to foster independent reading. The following goals are utilized when striving for successful literate students.
1) A teaching method in which the goal is to explicitly teach students strategies to become more skillful at comprehending text.
2) Involves students in authentic reading experiences that focus on the strengths and needs of each individual student through differentiated instruction.
3) Emphasizes the importance of student engagement and the interaction between readers and the text.
Fifth grade is a time for children to hone their intellectual independence. In the first unit, Interpretation Book Clubs: Analyzing Themes, students draw on a repertoire of ways for reading closely, noticing how story elements interact, understanding how different authors develop the same theme, and comparing and contrasting texts that develop a similar theme. In the second unit, Tackling Complexity: Moving Up Levels of Nonfiction, children investigate the ways nonfiction texts are becoming more complex, and they learn strategies to tackle these new challenges. This unit emphasizes the strong foundational skills, such as fluency, orienting to texts, and word solving, that are required to read complex nonfiction. In the third unit, Argument and Advocacy: Researching Debatable Issues, students read complex nonfiction texts to conduct research on a debatable topic, consider perspective and craft, evaluate arguments, and formulate their own evidence-based, ethical positions on issues. In the final unit for fifth grade, Fantasy Book Clubs: The Magic of Themes and Symbols, students work in clubs to become deeply immersed in the fantasy genre and further develop higher-level thinking skills to study how authors develop characters and themes over time. They think metaphorically as well as analytically, explore the quests and themes within and across their novels, and consider the implications of conflicts, themes, and lessons learned.
© 2016 Heinemann. A division of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.
In Writer’s Workshop, students write daily studying author's texts to see how they can strengthen their own writing techniques by following the author. Teachers work to help students develop greater writing stamina with daily writing. Our students are demonstrating great enthusiasm with Writer’s Workshop.
Pre- and Post On Demand Writing Assessments
For each Unit of Writing’ Workshop, students complete a Pre-on Demand writing sample at the onset of the new unit and then a Post On Demand piece upon completion of the unit. The Pre On-Demand piece is a formative assessment used to identify the strengths and weaknesses of the student(s) before beginning the unit of study. The Pre On-Demand sample does not count toward the student’s grade. This assessment equips the teacher with an understanding of the student(s) needs while preparing instruction to meet the needs of his (her) learners.
At the end of each unit, the students will complete a Post On-Demand sample which is a summative assessment counting toward the student’s performance on the unit. The teacher analyzes each piece to identify the growth the student has made since writing the first sample.
Each assessment is scored on a rubric that analyzes development of ideas, organization, elaboration as well as conventions including sentence structure, punctuation, capitalization, and grammar. It is expected that the child will show growth from the onset.
The rubric is scored on a scale of 1 - 4, with four being the highest score. It should be noted that the rubric used is set on a June expectation.
4= writing exceeds grade level expectations
3= writing is on grade level and meets the expectations of the grade level.
2= writing is approaching grade level expectations.
1= writing is below grade level expectations
WORDS THEIR WAY
Words Their Way®: Word Study for Phonics, Vocabulary, and Spelling Instruction provide a complete curriculum of reproducible sorts and detailed directions for the teacher working with students in each stage of spelling development, from emergent through derivational relations.
This collection of word sorting activities is for students who are in the syllables and affixes stage of spelling development, typically intermediate or advanced readers and writers (Grades 3 to 8). These students are ready to study multi-syllabic words–beginning with consonant doubling, plural endings and moving through the study of basic prefixes and suffixes. The sorts in this collection present 24 words each week, selected according to their frequency of occurrence in reading materials and allowing students to discover spelling generalizations or to compare syllable juncture features and patterns.
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