For Guided Reading
Getting Books for Guided
Basket/ Storing Guided Reading Supplies
Anecdotal Notes of Student's Reading
Reading Planning Binder
Getting Books for Guided
I have had many
teacher contact me asking WHAT I use to teach guided reading.
I am very
lucky. My school has a pretty large bookroom with LOTS of leveled books
that I use for Guided Reading. Also, our basal series (Scott Foresman
Series) comes with two boxes of guided reading sets. They are ok, but a
little dry. If your school does not provide the small, leveled books for
guided reading there are other places to get materials.
paid subscription (which I do not have), but I have heard good
things. Books are printable with activities and lessons with all
kind of stuff. Membership is $50 or $80 depending on the type of
also has several printable books bout the adventures of a little boy
named Tommy. I DON'T know what these are leveled (sorry!), but you
could level them yourself. There is a formula, but I don't know
it. These books are free if you become a member (which is free, you
just have to sign up).
This site is very similar to the
one above. It has free printable books that are leveled to use
as send home readers or in guided reading. This is an
excellent resource for teachers that do not have access to short
guided reading text. There are a few for the primary grades,
but most books seem to be geared to upper elementary.
the COOLEST magazines. They have all different topics (many will
fit in Sci/ SS content area). The site also added readability so
you can figure out what level you will need. Each magazine is about
$3.50, which I found to be pretty reasonable. They are jam packed
with info. I just bought several to use this school year.
doubt, check Ebay. I just searched leveled books and three pages
came up. Some were 3rd-4th grade level and one was even the Scott
Foresman series I was telling you about! I don't know how someone
is selling it on Ebay! The one thing I couldn’t tell is if they
were sets or individual leveled books. That would be a good thing to
NEVER suggest breaking copyright, but I have HEARD of some teachers
who buy a kids magazine, like Nickelodeon (sp?) and then make
copies of an article. Then the students all have the same piece of
writing, it is short and the teacher can zero in on a skill. It is
also really high interest. However, you wouldn’t know the level.
Time for Kids
Kids magazine puts many of the articles online for free. You can
print the articles to use in your reading groups. To get an
approximate level you can cut and paste the article into Word. Go to
the Tool bar and click on Options and the select the spelling and
grammar tab. On the bottom check the box that says readability
Instead of students coming to my reading table,
I move to the students. I find that this saves a bunch of transition
time, but it requires my reading materials to be organized and portable.
I stole this idea from our school's roving Reading Specialist and it works
I have a reading basket of all the materials I use in class.
It is a basket that I picked
up a the Dollar General. In the back of the basket I keep all of my
"teachery" things. In the front I keep cards I use in groups, pens,
markers, dry erase markers and post it notes.
This is a close up of the
materials in the front of my basket. I have my cup of writing
utensils, post it notes, two different kinds of response cards (see the
how to reading strategies page for more on these) and three EZ Readers. I
use the EZ Readers with my lower readers who have a difficult time with
tracking the words. these are very helpful with my ESOL students as
well. My school provided me with these.
These are some of the
materials I keep in the back of the basket. In each of the file
folders I have lesson plans for the books I am currently teaching.
My homeroom is the orange file folder, the other homeroom I teach is the
blue folder. I keep any general reading information in the manila
folder. The wikki sticks are used in groups to highlight paragraphs,
words or phrases.
These are two spinners that I
purchased at The School Box. One spinner is for before reading and
the other spinner is for after reading. I keep these with me in the back
of my basket.
When I moved into my new classroom for second grade, I also somewhat
rearranged how I organize my reading supplies as well.
This is the shelf
behind my guided reading table. The shelf on the left is full of
reading materials and the shelf on the right is math materials.
I bought several of
the 81/2 by 11 drawers from Wal-Mart. I keep most of my materials in these
labeled drawers. I have post it notes and note paper, office
supplies, crayons, markers and colored pencils, highlighter tape,
comprehension questions, EZ Readers and stickers.
In the very top of
the drawer are the red, green and yellow book boxes from Really Good
Stiff. Each reading group is assigned a book box. I store any
familiar reads or any new reads in the box. When I taught fourth
grade, I wrote a lesson plan for each guided reading text, since it took a
few days to get through each book. In second, we can get through a
book in one to two meetings. Now, I simply read the book in advance
and stick a post it note with ideas for tricky words, word work and
comprehension questions. Then I rubber band all the books together
with the post it note on top and stick it in the correct book box.
You may also notice
the big white basket of brain phones. These were provided by my
assistant principal. She made them herself from PVC pipe. My
kids that are still learning to internalize reading enjoy these phones
because it keeps them from distracting others. My AP simply went to
Home Depot and bought the PVC pipe and fitted them together!
I also have a folder of
speedie readies. I got this idea from
Ms Powell's website, although her
idea is slightly different than mine. In this folder I have all the
free Time for Kids, National Geographic and all the other
free sample magazines that I get in the mail form various companies.
Instead of throwing them away, I keep the magazines and when students are
finished reading in guided reading groups, or they are waiting for me (for
some reason) they can look at these (free! ) magazines! I haven't
used them as much as I could. I keep forgetting about them! I
am going to try to remember this year!
One thing that may be difficult for
some is keeping up with the materials for each guided reading group. I
have found a system that is very simple for me. I assign each group
a magazine file like the one pictured below:
All materials for this guided reading
group are kept in the file. For example, the copies of books,
student spiral notebooks for any writing or response work to guided
reading and sometimes post it notes. If students are assigned a
project during guided reading, they can keep their materials in here as
In the past I have kept all the
magazine files on a desk or table because they wouldn't fit on my reading
cart. In 2006 I tried storing them behind my table.
I know they are ugly and don't match
(all black, white and orange). This year I may try to buy these
really cute ones from Really Good Stuff!
09/06 Update: I found these really
cute magazines bins at the DOLLAR store! I bought enough to have one
for each group in my classes. They were to big to store on the shelf
behind the guided reading table (see above picture) so I have them on the
rolling cart next to the table.
3/09-As the years have progressed I
have found that I mostly enjoy storing all the groups materials in the
plastic book boxes from Really Good Stuff. I have done this for the
last 2 years and it keeps me organized! You can see the book bins
behind my table to the left on a short shelf under the lamp and CD player.
Is This My Book?
Guided reading with fluent readers is
very different than with beginning readers. First of all, it takes
more than one session to actually finish reading a book. One thing that drove me NUTS during
guided reading groups was figuring out and passing out student copies of
the guided reading texts. Since students jotted down thoughts on
post it notes and marked pages with them, it DID matter that students
always kept the same copy of the text. Now, when I first introduce
and pass out books, I also give students a post it. They write their
name on the post it and then stick it INSIDE the cover. Now we can
always figure who the books belong to!
Reading Tool Kit
I loved this idea that I found on
Ms. Gurian's website. You can create a
tool box for students to use during guided reading- or even in
independent reading time! She also
included directions on how to use it! Love it and will be
work on making these for next school year!!!
Anecdotal Notes of Student's Reading
It is important to remember that in guided reading, one thing you
are doing is listening for what a child does while they read so that
you can match your instruction to what the child needs. If the
child only uses visual cues (what the word starts with ,ends with or
vowel patterns), then you need to teach the kid other ways to
decode! To be able to be a reflective teacher, then you need
to be able to notice and recall what the reader does.
In order to do this, I
take anecdotal notes while the student reads. I note fluency,
strategies, miscues, were they able to answer my comprehension
questions I asked after the reading? I have tried MANY ways to
Here are just few to
give you some ideas. I have tried and decided against several,
but I am really picky, so just because I couldn't make it work,
doesn't mean you can't!
have had note cards taped in a staircase fashion to a clipboard so I
can just flip to the next card. Each student had one index
card. When I filled the index card up with notes, I peeled it
off the clipboard and filed it away in a index card file box.
Then I taped a new card in place. I am lazy and thought this was a
lot of work to maintain so I scratched it.
After that I bought each student a small spiral notebook, similar to
picture. Each student got one with their name labeled on
the front. I noted reading and writing conferences in the
spiral. This was ok, but the spiral notebooks were bulky and
it was a pain to sort through 22 of them to find the student I
needed. So I scrapped this idea.
Then I bought I bought a big package of Avery address labels and
printed this form
on them. I would pre-write each students name on one label so
I would be sure to meet with each child. Then I mark on the
label a s I listened to the child read. After I finished
several reading labels, I would stick them all in the little spirals
from above. However, I didn't like this because I felt like it
was too much extra work to have to find the spiral and stick the
And last but not least, the method I am going to try this year!
I just figured out that my computer grading program will print out a
class list in a table format. It is a two column format: the
students name on the left column and then a big blank box next to
each name. I am going to print these to use as my writing workshop
anecdotal notes. However, I have created my own version for
the reading anecdotal notes because I want something slightly more
structured. I cannot decide how I am going to use it yet.
is the reading anecdotal notes I am intending on using. One
sheet will have 14 students on it ( I wish I could fit the entire
class). I can look down
and in a glance know who I need to conference with. I will keep all
these clipped together on a clipboard. When I finish with a sheet
(and meet with most/ all students), I hole punch it and keep it in
my assessment binder.
Sandra Hogan, a first grade teacher shared this great idea, "I
have been using this for awhile and it's been working for me. I
use the 3X4 address labels. After writing my notes, I stick them
on their page in my reading record notebook. I have one large 3
ring notebook with dividers with their names. I have their sight
word checklists, running reading records, and a blank page for
anecdotal notes. After reading groups, I stick their label (with
date and notes) on their page. No printing pages or setting
up--just putting 4 sheets of labels on a clipboard and
recording. It's been great. This way I can flip to all of their
reading assessments and practice. If you get a large enough
binder you can store their other language assessments. "
I would love to hear any ideas
you have! Please email me with any of your ideas to add to the