If you are like me, you LOVE to see actual photographs of classrooms, student work, anchor charts, and more. When I SEE, I remember. When I READ, I wish I had something to SEE to help me remember! That’s just how my brain works.
Enter Julie Ballew. Have you seen her website? I am a frequent visitor because her photos of student work, anchor charts, and more help me picture things that I have read, thought about, considered doing, and so on. When I browse through her site, I feel that excitement . . . the “Ooooooh! I want to do that!” and “I FORGOT about that!” It’s a great place to visit when you need inspiration! She has everything from lesson plans to anchor charts (TONS of anchor charts!) to student work. Get ready to spend a few hours absorbing it all!
One such “inspiration” for me came from a project she featured where students created personal “reading identity ladders”. We called them “Me as a Reader” projects! We made these midway through first quarter after we had worked really hard to talk about reading behaviors, about what successful readers do, and about setting personal reading goals.
Here is the link to Julie’s page . . .
We had these hanging in the hallway and kids and adults LOVED to stop and check them out! We just took them down, and the kids were so excited to have them to keep–and loved talking about what goals they would have NOW if they did the project. I loved working with the students to become more in touch with their own reading “behaviors” and passions…and this project really helped us have some amazing discussions about how complicated reading is–and how we can ALL become better readers if we understand what reading is!
So, when you are looking for new inspiration, I can’t stress enough what nifty ideas Julie has! Check it out! Thanks for all your hard work, Julie! –> Julie’s Website!
Setting Reading Goals and Other Reading Lessons
Getting a year of reading started takes time and thought. There are so many different lessons we need to teach to help prepare students for success.
- We need to make sure we have a classroom library that students know how to access.
- Explicitly teaching students about how to choose books and stay focused is key.
- Helping students understand that reading is far more than sounding out the words.
- Getting students excited and talking about books builds community.
- Understanding that the more we read, the better we get is so important!
- We must find time every single day for students to read just right, self-selected books.
- Setting goals for and with students helps them move along their reading journey. These goals may be around book selection, writing about books, fluency, participating in book discussions, and so much more!
Need help setting reading goals with your students? This set of learning targets has been invaluable for me for goal setting, lesson planning, and helping students realize that reading is SO much more than just saying words–that there are SO many components to it! I use these ALL year long!