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Was hoping for ideas on what the other kids were doing. In first grade you have a wide range of ability. Needed ideas on how to keep others esp low functioning students actively engaged while you’re conferencing or working in small groups. The book had good info on forming groups and setting goals, so if that’s what you need then it’s not a waste of money.
This book is wonderful! There are many reasons why I think teachers should purchase this text, but here are just a few...
It perfectly links with the Writing Strategies book. The Writing Strategies Book gave us hundreds of strategies to use to teach our young writers, but now this book show us HOW that instruction could actually LOOK and how to put it all into action!! It clearly spells out different small group structures— who they would work for and what their purpose is. The text emphasizes scaffolding and level of support in selecting how your small groups should go. I personally loved the Guided Writing structure! I can really see using that with some of those writers who have trouble “moving” with their writing.
This book is also super user friendly in that it provides multiple examples of what the structures look like written as narratives as well as through videos. Everything is broken down so clearly into the components, structure and timing, and I LOVE the way it has FAQs. Us teachers always come back with “what ifs?” and I think that many of those “what if” type questions were addressed.
The videos and examples are authentic and not everything is “perfect”—whether Jen couldn’t do the link at the end of the lesson because the kids were “done” or when she had to remind someone to turn on their microphone and camera when holding a virtual meet. It’s nice to see that an expert is experiencing some of the same struggles the rest of us teachers do, too!
In this age when budgets are tight and schools are focusing on plexi-class dividers and bodies in rooms and less on actual teaching and learning, I feel that this book lends itself so well for individual teachers to dive right in or groups of teachers in book study groups to try things out. It’s nice that I am learning and growing and don’t have to sit through yet another Zoom meeting to do so!
Definitely purchase this book! Even if you need to wait until this crazy school year is over, you will want to have this ready as you first summer PD read.