Indiana Reading Journal Volume 44 Issue 1 - Page 52

when conducted effectively, can meet students at varying levels and teach them without the use of boring, time-wasting worksheets. Your work will be more authentic, as your conversations take on a “real-world” application and meaning.

Weapons of Class Instruction

Next, let’s talk artillery. I have included some. Figures 1 and 2 on pages 9-12 were designed to serve two purposes to my fellow read-aloud recruits. First, use them to reassure yourself. You’ll discover that you’re teaching what is expected by the state, and you’re doing it well by using Layne’s recommendations for how to read aloud (pp. 8-9). Secondly, they will help with lesson planning.

Look at Table 1. This spreadsheet was made to illustrate the ease and common sense of using read-aloud to teach the Indiana Standards. In addition to that, I propose that these forms could work as a lesson plan form prepared before you read. The first column in Table 1, labeled, “Indiana Standards” contains the Literature Standards for 2nd Grade (Fiction). The middle column of the spreadsheet suggests a way for you to integrate the standard during your read-aloud time. The final column, labeled “Comments, examples, or notes for the read-aloud” is obviously a space to write down notes about skills you wish to cover while reading aloud.

In the third column of cells, it is important to write in any questions you intend to ask about what’s been read, along with the modeling of your thinking. Remember it is also important to remind yourself when to stop and ask students to visualize “the movie in their minds” (p.32) .Students need to learn that good readers see a movie as they read. Layne reminds us that students need to be shown how to use the skill of visualization and he suggests that a great way to helps students who struggle is to invite students to act out what they saw in their mind after you read a descriptive part of text to them (p. 32). You could also do a response to literature where students sketch and write a brief description of what they see happening. These could be shared in small group. Many reading patriots I know also make use of “stikki notes” inside the text, as a reminder of where and what to question, model, or think aloud. The notes hold the place of the exact location in the text to ask the standards-related questions. By using this method, remembering is not left to chance during the actual reading time with students.

Layne suggests that we should have intimate knowledge of the books we use for Read-Aloud and use it for good teaching. To support this, I suggest use of the left column of the form(s) to highlight or circle the standards that you know are covered in the part of the book that you plan to read to your class. Then write notes in the third column, or use “stikki notes” as described above. For those of you who save your daily lesson plans from year to year, you could record the number of times the standard was discussed during your read aloud by using tally marks in the appropriate cell that lists a particular standard. As you look at Table 2, you’ll notice it was designed to be used in the same way, but the nonfiction standards are represented instead.

Indiana Standard

2.RL.1: Read and comprehend a variety of nonfiction within a range of complexity appropriate for grades 2-3. By the end of gr.2, students interact with texts proficiently and independently at the low end of the range and with scaffolding as needed at the high end.

How Read Aloud Can assist in instruction

As elaborated upon by Layne, there is the process of teaching using the “listen up” strategy. This strategy involves the teacher’s understanding that, as a general rule, if text is read aloud to them with fluency and expression, students will usually have a listening comprehension level that functions two levels higher than their reading level.

Level of my read-aloud:______

Comments, Examples or notes

Table 1: Indiana Second Grade Literature Standards Addressed by Read-Aloud (FICTION)

Name of Read Aloud_____________________________ Date(s):_______________________ Aloud_____________________________________Dates:¬¬¬¬¬¬¬¬_________________________