I received a lot of great feedback about how I run my reading block in first grade. Thanks for all the comments and emails! My kindergarten reading block is very similar, so this post won't be as long. Maybe...
Once again, I do not do stations on Mondays. I use this day to introduce all the new skills and our read aloud for the week. We usually complete some activities together, to help the children practice the phonics skill for the week and the new sight words.
We do stations Tuesday through Friday, pretty much the same way as in first grade. While the children are going to stations, I am meeting with my four reading groups.
We work on phonological/phonemic awareness skills, sight words, reading skills, and writing. I find that teaching these skills during small groups is so much more effective. You can really see who gets it and who needs more help. And some groups will move quicker through this instruction and some groups will need more time with one skill over another. You can really differentiate instruction with small groups.
Last week, I introduced the -at word family. Some of my groups practiced -at words using this simple, predictable book.
And then we practiced reading from our leveled reader.
And I try to fit in some kind of guided writing, as well.
While I am meeting with reading groups, my students are going to stations. They use the same station board I showed here, except I replace the Grammar Station card with a Play-doh Station card.
These are my kindergarten stations:
Work on Writing
Read to Self
Puzzles and Games
As in first grade, my kindergartners choose the stations they want to go to each day. When they are finished, they move to another station. Some kids visit more stations than others. In between each of my reading groups, I stop everyone for a brief moment, and do a quick check to make sure everyone is doing their personal best. I see if they have any questions, and then I begin my next group.
Here are some pictures of the stations my students worked on last week. You'll notice that each station has more than one activity to complete. They don't complete more than one a day so that they can go back to the same station several times during the week.
Word Work Station
Here are other activities the children do at the Word Work Station:
Click here for more images.
Work on Writing Station
(The students use the word/picture cards from the above link or from here.)
Here are other activities the children do at the Work on Writing Station:
Students follow the same procedure outlined here.
Read to Self
My uncozy library! *sigh*
Puzzles and Games
I have a great mix of games here. The children practice all kinds of language skills, as well as, social skills.
This is the station checklist my kindergartners use. It is almost the same as first grade, except this one has numbers. In case the children can't read the name of the station, they can easily match the numbers since I numbered each station. (Check out the 3 at the Writer's Notebook Station in the picture above!)
This checklist is important, as it reminds them where they've been each day and holds them accountable for visiting all the stations each week, as many times as possible.
And that's how I run my kindergarten reading block. It took a while to get to the point where I could trust my students to work so well independently. It does not happen over night. You really have to instill a strong work ethic and sense of urgency in your students. As well as, give lots and lots of encouragement and empower them to become independent. I really love this routine because it allows my students to move at their own pace. It also allows for lots of differentiation and flexible grouping.
Please feel free to leave your comments and questions below. I promise to get back to you!