Thinking Ahead...Need Your Help

I have been thinking about how to teach ELA next year, I know crazy time to think about it with 3.5 days left.  Next year will be the first time in four years I will not have the inclusion class.  I am excited to have a range of ability levels next year which is why I am struggling with deciding how I want to utilize my ELA block.  I am fortunate to have the freedom to do what I want and teach with a wide variety of materials (we do not yet have a Reading Series aligned to CC).  This is where you come in and give advice and share what you do or have done in the past. :)

Please help me by linking up a new or previous post about how you teach Reading, a lesson plan, tell what your reading block looks like, leave a comment with some good books to read on teaching Reading, etc.  Thanks everyone!


  1. I was thrilled when I saw this post because I've been wanting to do a link up like this myself! I'm always looking at my ELA time and tweaking my schedule to maximize my time! I'll be back to link up and can't wait to see all the other posts!
    Polka Dot Lesson Plans

  2. I have quite a few posts about how I started up a Reading Workshop in my classroom on my blog...but I don't want to monopolize your linky! Feel free to e-mail me if you are interested in Reading/Writing workshop. I would be happy to share more with you!

    Hunter's Tales from Teaching

  3. Great Idea! I am always looking for great ELA lessons. I linked up my cause and effect post. I look forward to seeing with others post.

    Foreman Teaches

  4. How much time do you have for an ELA block? We have about 90 minutes (some days a little more). I usually do a 30 minute whole group lesson (from the reading series-but Friday's I do my own thing, we call it Fun Friday) followed by an hour or so of 'practice' or rotation.

    It also depends on what you need to cover during your ELA block as well-for us, spelling is a separate program that gets mostly done at home. That also frees up some time. Writing isn't as heavily focused on (grrrr-we do that on Friday sometimes), nor is grammar.

    My suggestion would be to look at the standards of what you need to cover, and work backwards from them. Then, troll for resources! :) I would be happy to help if you need it-and I do have some fun lessons I've done (like Bethany, I don't want to crowd your linky- but I'll link up with a new favorite soon!)

    :) Kaitlyn
    Smiles and Sunshine

  5. I just read the Daily 5 book. I know a lot of people use it, and I really liked it! I plan on doing Daily 5 with my reading instruction this year.

  6. I love Daily are involved in meaningful literacy activities while you meet with your guided groups. Comprehension connections is another great you great concrete ways to teach reading strategies. I also love all of Debbie Miller's books!
    Two Friends In First

  7. I'm looking forward to reading all of the great posts from the other teachers. I'm always looking for new ideas!

    I'm Not Your Grandpa, I'm Your Teacher I'm Not Your Grandpa, I'm Your Teacher

  8. My county has been slowly implementing a new program that incorporates a variety of "best practices" We have been trained in Jan Richardson's Guided Reading ( I really like it. I try to meet with two groups a day while the rest of my kids are rotating through centers (computer, writing, listening, theme, word study, current events, fluency, etc.) We also use Lucy Caulkins for writing. Finally, we use Holt's Interactive Read Aloud format. All of it together takes about 2 1/2 hours with word study (Words Their Way). All of these are great resources :)

    Good Luck!
    Three Cheers for First Grade

  9. I agree with everyone else regarding the Daily 5, AND I would suggest the CAFE, also by "the Sisters". I have adapted both to meet my students' needs. I especially like using the CAFE as an organizational framework for reading workshop because the bulletin board makes all of the strategies visible for your kids, and it allows you to differentiate for all your students no matter what level they are reading at, making it applicable for all elementary grades. Like many other teachers, I also teach writing through the workshop approach and have used the following as mini-lesson sources: Lucy Calkins, Ralph Fletcher and 6+ Traits.
    BTW, you're not crazy to think of the next year now- don't we all do that?? I know I do!! :)
    Creating a Thoughtful Classroom


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