My oral reading time is one of my favourite times of the day - it's sometimes hard to squeeze in, but I try my best to get to it every day. I was so excited to find out Gordon Korman had written a new trilogy (based on The Titanic) that I bought it the second I saw it, and knew it would be our first oral read this year. I started last week on the very first day of school, and was a bit disappointed that my students didn't seem as engaged as other classes I have read to. Sure, the language is a little different, and it's not the adventure style the kids have come to expect from Gordon Korman ... but it's a GREAT book, and I knew I had to do something different. Thursday night I asked my husband to borrow his eReader and promptly downloaded the first book. On Friday, I put the eReader under the ELMO, and now the kids can follow along on the SMARTboard. Such.A.Difference! The kids are following along, engaged, asking vocabulary questions, and recalling details. YAY!
Our current reading focus is summarizing. I usually find this strategy hard to practise with an oral reading novel, but the fact that the kids can now follow along has made this so much easier. Today we made a "Gimme 5" summary together, and the kids had no problem recalling details - and we came up with a pretty great summary. I had given them handouts similar to the chart paper pictured, and they recorded the details on the hand while I was reading. When I was done the chapter, groups created a Gimme 5 summary on chart paper. This was one of the better ones. I'll be working my way through my Summarizing Package for the next few weeks - I love to give my students different strategies for writing a summary. Tonight I'll be making Summary Bookmarks (included in my package) for my students. They keep these bookmarks in their independent reading novels, and refer to them often.