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Teaching Reading K-2 Workshop.




From: Lorraine Steckler (
Date: Sat Jan 24 2004 - 16:41:35 EST

  • Next message: "Re: [Channel-talkreadingk2] learning centers"

    Thank you for all this great information. I am excited to get in and try this. Where did you find the book by Debbie Miller? Who publishes it? Lorraine

    Renee Wilson <> wrote:I've done centers many different ways and found the self-selected with 20-24 centers to work the best because the students are actually choosing what they want to work on which for the most part keeps them on task. Granted any center they choose is going to reinforce or work on different skills, so there aren't any bad choices. Modeling expectations and allowing time to practice routines and expectations before sending them out on their own is what always works for me. I feel it sets them up for success.
    I forgot to mention before that I do have a separate chart at centers with the words "Gainfully Employed" and "Unemployed" on different sides. The students are explained the term "Gainfully Employed" in relation to their center work being their job and when your actively engaged, using your whispering voices, you are learning which is your payment. I explain that if I didn't do a my job well, I wouldn't reap the benefits of their learning and also my paycheck. And then there's the flip side-- to be "Unemployed". If a student is not on task and participating in centers like we had spent so much time modeling and practicing, I have the option of moving them (a clothespin with their name) to unemployment. Being on unemployment means they have to sit somewhere alone with a clipboard and worksheets (handwriting papers and other papers you find that your students are not excited about). I've had to do this one time in four years.
    There are times when I have to just give "a look" :) or a quick verbal reminder to keep students on task, but for the most part they are always engaged in what they are doing.
    Hope this helps!
    P.S. As much as my students and I like the centers, I am in the process of cutting back and moving to a Reader's Workshop which will give my students more actual "reading" time. This goes along withf what Nancy brought up in an email. I've been attending workshops and reading some great professional development books that emphasize this idea. Have any of you read Reading with Meaning by Debbie Miller? It is a great book--an easy read!! I highly recommend it.
    -----Original Message-----
    From: []On Behalf Of Lorraine Steckler
    Sent: Thursday, January 22, 2004 7:29 PM
    Subject: Re: [Channel-talkreadingk2] learning centers

    I also have a wild bunch of 19 2nd graders. They have a difficult time staying focused on the tasks given them. What are some of the techniques you use to help them learn to focus better? Help! Lorraine wrote: I just started literacy centers this week and have found them to be very positive. I have a wild bunch of 35 second graders. At this time I am rotating them. I explained this is just a stepping stone to self selection. I love the idea about have to's and then so much choice. How many have to's do you do at each center time? What grade do you teach? How many children do you have?
    Thanks for all the wonderful ideas.

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