Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Shared Reading

An important part teaching reading is shared reading. A great way to do shared reading is read alouds. If you start with a picture walk where you go through a book the children have never read. Together you will explore new words and new concepts. You can suggest words for children to look for. As you read the story children will chime in with comments and things that they notice. Once you have read the story several times with the students, you can have them create their own version of the story and create their own class book. Shared reading is a great way to get children involved and thinking about reading.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Learning with Peers

It's a well know fact that children learn from their peers. Children are often able to learn more from their peers about a lesson than from a teacher. Peers think on a child's level where as the teacher may not always be able to. This method of learning can be applied to any subject including literacy.

This type of learning can be called the social practices discourse. "Social practice discourse describes a recursive cycle in which two-way mediation between the child and others in the social and cultural environment creates a zone of proximal development, a space where mentors facilitate as novices learn literacy to mediate the environment."

Children feed off each other when learning. When in literacy center, two children do some creative writing. When finished one child hids his work from another. When the other child notices this she tries to guess what the other has written. It becomes a guessing game. In the end the girl is able to read what the boy has written.

Teachers role is to listen in on these conversations and learn about the children and what they have been exposed to culturally and socially in their environments.