In March the students in Mrs. Parello’s first grade class and Mrs. Mortello’s kindergarten class joined together as reading partners to practice one of their Daily Five literacy tasks, “Read to Someone.” The Daily Five is a series of literacy tasks that help students to develop the daily habits of reading, writing and working with peers that will lead these students to independent literacy. The teachers assigned reading partners, placed them in various areas around the room and the students took turns reading books from their literacy book buckets on their independent reading level. Students sat EEEK (elbow to elbow, knee to knee) as they shared their favorite stories. They participated in “I Read, You Read and Check for Understanding.” One student read their book while the other student listened carefully and held a checkmark for understanding. The listener summarized what was read on each page. Then the partners switched roles. The students also offered reading support when a student was unsure about a word. They asked the student if they wanted coaching or time? If they wanted time, they gave their partner “think time” to apply a known reading strategy. If they wanted coaching, the partner offered suggestions as to what reading strategies to try. A coaching bookmark with picture clues for each strategy was used for support.
Reading with someone helps the students to read independently and grow as readers. Research shows that taking turns reading increases reading involvement, attention and collaboration. Students love partner reading and will readily do it with books of their own choosing.
The students thoroughly enjoyed reading, discussing books, sharing their thinking and learning with their new friends. They are looking forward to their next shared learning experience.