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Stage A
A Gradual Release Toward Independent Reading
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Finding ways to get the Modeled and Independent Reading Group operating smoothly can be one of the most important, and hardest, jobs of the READ 180 teacher.

There are so many important protocols for the students  to get comfortable with that it can be overwhelming for them, as well as you. The kids need to know how to:

  • Fill out their Reading Logs 
  • Find appropriately-leveled paperback books
  • Complete Quickwrites and graphic organizer
  • Take quizzes on Reading Counts!

And that's just to name a few! Trying to go over all this at once and then expecting the kids to do it correctly while you're teaching can lead to major headaches. Trust me, I've tried it.  

So consider taking a twist of our tried and true Gradual Release Model and applying it to the reading group.

Here's how I do it:

1. During our Whole- and Small-Group rotations, we listen to, and complete all the work for, one of the audio book titles (I usually use one of the shorter "picture" books). While working on the book over a few days, I show them where to find their reading folders, how to fill out their reading logs, and what kind of writing I expect for their Quickwrites. After we finish the book, we do a review game prior to everyone taking the Reading Counts quiz.  This is the "I Do" phase, where I take on most of the responsibility.

2. I have the students pick out a book from their "Simple" Lexile level and monitor them closely as they complete the book, questions, and quiz. This is the "We Do" phase, where I act like the kids' partner.

3. The students choose a book from their "Moderate" Lexile level and are responsible for completing the work on their own like they would mid-year. This is the "You Do" phase, where the kids are off and running.

Following this gradual release has several benefits:  

  • It assures the students know and have practiced what is expected of them.  
  • It gives you time to explain "why" they need to do things as well as "what" they need to do.  
  • It gets all the students off to a positive start in the reading group.  
  • It decreases the number of routine-related headaches you will have to deal with throughout the year! 
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Stage A READ 180 Educator
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