- Age Range: 6 - 11 years
- Grade Level: 1 - 6
- Paperback: 248 pages
- Publisher: Heinemann; unknown edition (January 26, 2010)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0325026807
- ISBN-13: 978-0325026800
- Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 0.5 x 9.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 21 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #36,087 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Teaching Reading in Small Groups: Differentiated Instruction for Building Strategic, Independent Readers unknown Edition
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About the Author
Jennifer Serravallo is the author of New York Times bestseller The Reading Strategies Book as well as other popular Heinemann titles, including Teaching Reading in Small Groups; Conferring with Readers; and The Literacy Teacher's Playbook, Grades K - 2 and Grades 3 - 6. Her newest book is The Writing Strategies Book. She is also the author of the On-Demand Course Teaching Reading in Small Groups: Matching Methods to Purposes where you can watch dozens of videos of Jen teaching in real classrooms and engage with other educators in a self-guided course. Jen began her career in education as a teacher in Title I schools in NYC and later joined the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project at Columbia University. Through TCRWP and now as an independent consultant, she has spent over a decade helping teachers across the country to create literacy classrooms where students are joyfully engaged and the the instruction is meaningfully individualized to students' goals. Jen holds a BA from Vassar College and an MA from Teachers College, where she has also taught graduate and undergraduate classes on urban education reform and children's literature. Learn more about Jen and her work at www.jenniferserravallo.com, or connect with her at @jserravallo.
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"Teaching Reading in Small Groups" is about how to form guided reading groups, how to pinpoint your instruction to match your readers' needs, and basically, how to help your kids be better readers. The author spends a good deal of time showing you how to coach kids during guided reading lessons. She is of the mind that your lessons should be brief and to the point, and you should get your kids practicing what you taught them immediately. She is a big believer in teaching kids how to be strategic readers (so am I). Snapshots of her dialogue are presented as exemplars throughout the book. I found these examples to be just right in terms of their depth and relevance. In addition to learning Serravallo's approach to leading comprehension strategy lessons, you also get a great chapter on teaching engagement with reading, tips for improving book clubs at all grade levels, and some useful methods for teaching fluency in small groups. I know that all of this stuff sounds familiar, but no other book that I'm aware of presents this information in such an exemplary way. Serravallo just shines when it comes to showing you HOW to do expert guided reading lessons with small groups and individual readers. (I would also like to mention that the author stays on topic, sounds convincing and knowledgeable without being supercilious, and is quite down-to-earth overall, which is much more than what I have come to expect from Heinemann books.)
Please note that this book is not a primer on reading comprehension strategies or an introduction to reading workshops. Teachers who have some experience with guided reading and teaching reading comprehension and are looking for ways to improve will benefit the most from this book. If you are a new teacher you could learn a lot from this book too, but I would encourage you to come back to it after you have gone through a general text on guided reading (something by Fountas & Pinnell) as well as a good book on comprehension strategies like "Comprehension Process Instruction" or "Explaining Reading".
-match the individual
-move to independence
-teach explicit strategies
-value time, volume, and variety in reading
-have predictable structures and routines
In the following chapter Serravallo shows various ways to assess engagement, strategies, comprehension and conversation, and how to use the results to group students for instruction. This is the first book I've seen that covers realistic ways to assess engagement and conversation, and they were helpful. This is followed by chapters on teaching each of these points. These chapters are filled with specific examples of student work, charts, and other helpful graphics. The author is never content with merely saying "This is what I do," but always works to help the teacher make the best choices for herself and her students.
Teaching Reading in Small Groups ends with the author's take on small groups and Reading Workshop structure. She recommends Lucy Calkins book, and her ideas follow Calkins' closely. If you've read Calkins but want something shorter and more specific, or if you want an easier introduction to the Reading Workshop, I recommend this book.