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Monster Jobs
United States

June 28,1999
Reading Recovery
Time Savers and Other Tips
Related Links
Reading Recovery Council of North America
Reading Recovery in California Home Page
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Mary K&1 - Good evening, Welcome to Teachers.Net's Monthly Reading Recovery Meeting. Tonight I hope that we can share some time saving tips and organizational ideas.
Mary K&1 - Have you been teaching RR long enough to come up with some time savers that you would be able to share with us?
maureen_OH - I've been teaching a long time and am in desperate need of time saving tips!
Mary K&1 - One of the biggest problems that I have is time! I teach Kindergarten in the AM and RR in the PM, I have almost no in school plan time and would very much like to know of ways to make the best use of the time that I have, anyone have any tips?
Joan - I always seem to have a problem keeping lessons to within the 30 min. framework. I'm forever behind.
Mary K&1 - Keeping all the various papers and forms in order and and easy to find when I need them has always been hard for me. I've been scanning forms and saving them to disk - I can find things on a computer faster than I can in a notebook, folder or binder - anyone have any suggestions as to how you keep your things in order?
Pam - I too have trouble keeping to 30 minutes especially when the child reaches the higher levels. Any suggestions out there?
SBU - time is such an issue, setting a focus is the most important thing I do!
Beth - I have been a RR teacher for sseveral years. We always fight the money thing--Do you?
Harriet - Joan and Pam, I have the same problem with keeping to 30 min.
Mary K&1 - Joan, the timer that I bought from the RR site is a great help with pacing the lesson - it beeps 10, 20, and 25 mins. into the lesson. Helps you know how much time has passed.
Pam - Mary K&1: I have letter holder on my table with 5 sections. In each section I keep the lesson record, running record and some other forms I use from time to time. As I finish each student I take each of the forms I need for the next lesson and put it in his book. this way if I need to take it home, I have it with me.
Deb - I have developed a shorthand that saves time
Joan - I put my timer on but I just keep going until I complete the lesson anyway. I guess I'm a rule breaker.
smiles - I found some templates of many of the main forms for the computer. Once I put in scores, etc..they go to all the forms.
maureen_OH - too much teacher talk=too long of a lesson
Pam - Smiles, where did you find the templates?
Beth - Smiles-Where did you get the computer forms?
Harriet - I put a week's worth of forms in each student's folder, so they are there when I need them. I also run off many copies of each student's form with the name already on them.
Peggi - Pam, I can't picture the letter holder. what is it like?
Joan - Maybe the shorthand code would be helpful to the rest of us.
Gina/MO - Mary--I just use plain old file folders, regular folders, and a BIG huge binder!!
Pam - Peggi, you can buy it in a stationary store. It stacks so you can have as many sections as you need.
smiles - His names is Bill Heintz home # 608-241-4994 - E-mail is
Beth - Do you all have regular communications with the regular classroom teachers?
Peggi - okay,Pam.Gotcha now. Thanks!
Pam - smiles, do you have the address for the templates you were talking about?
Joan_IN - I communicate with the classroom teachers but they don't make much effort to do the same
cathy - Smiles - I would be interested in the forms for the computer - my email is Thanks!!he computer forms you mentioned
Gina/MO - Hey, Doug!! Glad to see you!! You always have great ideas!!
Mary K&1 - Beth, I try to, but in school time is all too short - I have to talk on the run - catch teachers in between lunch and recess - etc
cathy - Maureen - you are right!
smiles - I don't have an address...just his home phone # and email.
smiles - For these RR templates it was $25 and he sends you the disk for either mac or pc
cathy - I taught Reading Recovery and Reading Resource (Title I groups in first and second grades - will be doing second grade and Reading Recovery next year and training with OSU to be the builoding literacy coordinator - sorry about the spelling!!
Pam - smiles, thanks for the information.
Peggi - cathy, Your're Read. resource position is not spec. ed then is it?
Mary K&1 - Melinda, we are sharing ideas about time savers for Reading Recovery Teachers
maureen_OH - I found some interesting forms on the reading recovery in California home page. Haven't had the time to try them out though
Doug - maureen- they are written in Word and won't print using Claris Works
Mary K&1 - jean, do you have any time saving tips to share with us?
Deb - What do you all do about longer books? Do you split the book for time sake?
maureen_OH - never thought of that...I have word...sorry
Sadie - I think I'm in the right place today. I spent the afternoon with scan forms, lesson records, and papers, papers, papers all over my table.
Mary K&1 - maureen, yes, there are some good downloads there, and
Pam - deb, if it is a familiar book, i only read one instead of two books.
smiles - I was told to just use the first 100-200 words of longer books 0-200 words..
Deb - smiles, that was what i heard too but it sometimes messes up comp
maureen_OH - I thought you only needed 100 words for an accurate running record
Deb - I think the 100-200 is just for Run. Rec. not for comp.
Pam - I was also told by my TL that you only need 100 words for an accurate RR.
Sadie - maureen, the problem is that sometimes the "tricky" part is not in the first 100 words.
Mary K&1 - maureen, if you need 100 words for an accurate rr, we are all in trouble at the lower levels :-\
cher - Smiles - Does the Mac disc you were talking about work with Clarisworks?
Mary K&1 - Some books have far less total words
maureen_OH - I meant not more than...I thought that's what I was told...
Pam - I think they mean in longer books -- over 100 words
Sadie - If the child is reading fluently, those longer books aren't as big of a problem. Sometimes I'll only do 2 familiar reading books if I know my rr or my new book will be long.
Deb - hi Jan. Anyone have shorthand for lessom plans?
smiles - The templates for RR do work with Clarisworks!
Doug - mary- we have a print shop for our district. I made 40 copies of all the forms we need except for the lesson plan and the running record page. Life may get a little easier
SBU - I agree Sadie, fluency is the key
jan - Clue me in on the templates??
jan - This is my 7th year doing RR- We have created alot of our forms on the computer
jan - That has saved us some time.
Melinda - I save time by putting the names on RR and the lesson record and then copying them. I also use a self-inking date stamp
Doug - Mary- did you know i had to do a scantron on a kid who moved during roaming? Didn't make sense
KJM - I have a time saving tip..I plan M&B in advance and put them in tin covers. This saves the time when you put the letters on the board
jan - I have been the only RR teacher in my school with 8 first grade classess. and we are getting another RR teacher next year
Sadie - KJM, I do something similar... but I have the letters in baggies which are attached to each child's box with a clothespin
Mary K&1 - jan, did you do this on your own, or have help from someone somewhere?
Gina/MO - Jan--bet you are glad!!
jan - We put everything on the lesson plan forms that can be duplicated before we copy them
sharon - I use initials (snqr=something is not quite right, etc) on lesson plans in order to record quickly
jan - I created some of the forms using excel - like the graph and then several of us got together and created some others on excell
jan - Unfortunately some of the paper work is still necessary
Sadie - Sharon, me too... I use things like WDYN for what did you notice? when i record my prompts
maureen_OH - More forms are supposed to save time??
Peggi - Do most of you use a three ring binder or a pocket folder for your Students' work?
Mary K&1 - How do all of you keep each child's records and forms in order - notebooks, folders, trifolds?
KJM - yes, a binder
Mary K&1 - I've tried a new way each year and I'm still not happy
Joan_IN - I use a three ring binder
Melinda - I use a pocket folder for each week and transfer into a 3 ring binder
Deb - I use a three ring binder /child
maureen_OH - Do you keep all the kids in one binder, or a binder per kid?
Doug - 2 inch notebooks...just in case I run into 100 lessons LOL
Pam - I use a 3 ring binder also.
Peggi - I use a three ring binder, but still not sure it's the best.
Sadie - peggi, I do both. I store the records in a binder but I keep a week's worth of records in a pocket folder. Then each Friday after I fill in the graph etc. I transfer them to the binder.
Gina/MO - I use a binder for each child!!
Joan_IN - One binder per child
Pam - I have tried the folders, but found the binders work better for me. It's inconvenient when i have to bring them home.
Sadie - I could not survive without my clothespins!
Doug - Big Question- do you keep all familiar reading in a box or just a few?
Mary K&1 - For those of you using binders - do you punch holes in all the pages or have pocket folders in the binders?
Peggi - sadie, my teaching partner does it that way too. Are you happy with that system?
Sadie - I have the books needed for that day held together with a bright clothespin so I'm not searching for books.
KJM - I use a folder and staple the attend. chart, vocab. chart, and book level graph. I kkep the lesson records in here as well as the running record sheets from the past week
Doug - Mary- yes
Deb - I keep all FR in the box until it gets too easy. i weed out lower levels
Pam - I keep all familiar reading in a basket. Once the child really knows the bookds I remove them.
cher - Sadie - Clothespins?
Joan_IN - I agree. The kids always go for the easier books at lower levels
Sadie - Yes, peggi.... I keep the binders on a table behind my that is easy access if I need to check records but out of the way from my working table.
Mary K&1 - maureen, I tried keeping everyone in one binder, but the binder got so big it put my back out every time I had to lift it, so I had to break it into individual binders
smiles - I went to 1" binders and clean out 1/2 way through to a folder...easier to carry home.
Peggi - Good idea Sadie (clothespin)
Pam - Good idea smiles.
Deb - I put the lesson plans in the binder on the bottom and add up. i keep OS and comm. record in the front with some possible book selections for NB
Mary K&1 - Doug, my containers for Fam. Reading are shallow, so we have to take out the older books quite regularly
maureen_OH - Mary, I've tried it both ways...think I'll go back to a binder per kid.
Sadie - I also use clothespins to clip the daily lesson record, running record and the updated vocabulary sheet together..... when i'm done with the child's lesson i pop them back in the pocket... I don't know if this is making any sense! :)
Gina/MO - I punch holes in my pages, Mary!!
Mary K&1 - Besides that, I wouldn't have enough books to go around if they kept them all
Pam - I have a pocket folder in each binder. I choose 3or 4 books on one level for the child , easy, medium, and hard. This way I always have his books ready.
Doug - Mary- we had a polite debate on this topic today at school
Peggi - I punch holes in the lesson plans, & run. record forms for a week or more.
Sadie - What was the debate, Doug?
Doug - Sadie all or some familiar reading books
Mary K&1 - Oh, Doug please tell us more about the debate
smiles - I use pocket folders for each binder to hold the RR book another for the 3-4 new books
Deb - Who picks books for FR and who has the students pick?
Sadie - What do you mean, Doug?
Doug - Our veterans feel that just a few books for familiar reading is all you need. i said that seeing all the books read is intrinsically motivating
Mary K&1 - Doug, my kids seem to lose interest in books after awhile, and they do become too easy - not enough reading work, so I don't have a problem taking them out
Melinda - I let the students choose most of the time but my TL said I should pick
Deb - I agree Doug
Sadie - Deb, I pick.....I ususally have a reason for choosing certain books.
maureen_OH - I choose 2 or 3 and let the child pick from those
Mary K&1 - I suppose if I had enough books and deeper containers, I'd leave them in
Joan_IN - I usually pick the FR books if the chikd tends to take too long
Gina/MO - Deb--I usually set 3-4 books out on the table and let them pick 2-3 of them!!
smiles - I also choose 2-3 and the child picks from those...unless I have a better reason
Mary K&1 - Melinda, I let the kids choose one or two and I do the same
Peggi - I choose 3 or 4 and let child pick from those.
Val - is anyone else a fairly new rr teacher?
Sadie - I have the FR pre-selected and sitting on the table when the child comes in. The child may choose the order, but I choose the books.
Pam - I put 6 books on the table. The student picks 2 to take home and 2/3 FR to read.
Joan_IN - Val, I just completed my training year
Doug - Mary- what to do with lost books. Do you have parents sign a reading log, do you charge them or do you budget for lost ones?
Peggi - Val, i just completed my training year. Yeah!
Sadie - Val, I just finished my 2nd year.
Val - last year was my first year after the training yeat
Melinda - Some of my kids are too slow to have them read more than 1 or 2. They do well on the RR but fluency is a problem. Any suggestions
maureen_OH - Doug, we try to charge, and then hope for the best!
Val - I have the same trouble, Melinda
Pam - Doug, there is a form on the california rr site that asks the parent to sign a contract saying they will send in $5 to replace any lost book. All of my parents have signed it and the children never lost a book.
Sadie - You may want to move down a level or two for FR. Choose texts that really lend themselves to phrasing and fluency, Melinda
maureen_OH - My parents sign nightly that they've listened to the book
Mary K&1 - Doug, I try to get the books back through constant reminders, but I'm not always successful. I don't charge them - they are usually very unable to come up with the money
KJM - our district tells us to charge them $5 and then we can replace them by ordering a single copy. Call the book company and ask them to sell you a sigle copy.
Deb - For lost books we charge them $6-$8. We tell them ahead of time that books belong to a leveled set and to take care if them
Joan_IN - I'd like to have a copy of that lost book form
Sadie - I did not stress fluency last year and this year I really worked on it. What a difference!
Mary K&1 - Pam, I may add that to my permission slips, it just might help
Deb - I've even gone to some houses for lost books and usually other things but not so much lately
Doug - mary- I teach at a year round school with a high transiency rate. One kid flew the coop with 10 (Even Mrs Wishy Washy...I cried)
Melinda - Sadie - what did you do differently?
Peggi - Maureen, I tried that par tway through the year. I like having parents sign. Any other ideas for parent involvement?
jen - Sadie what kinds of things did you do i need to work on flunecy too
Gina/MO - Doug--Good question!! (but you have all the answers--HaHa!) I write down the books they take home on index cards the first quarter to see if they will bring them back consistently but I think I'm going to continue it through the year this year!!
Joan_IN - Our TL never even discussed permission forms
Val - I was working on fluency too, Sadie...someone also gave me a great article on more supportive book introductions
Sadie - Melinda, do you have the student practice saying some of the phrases that are repeated in the texts?
Doug - Sadie- yes
Sadie - Doug, I've lost over 30 books in 2 years! It hurts!
Mary K&1 - Oh, Doug, that is a big problem! I don't know what to say, How can you ever track them down?
Pam - I have a marble covered notebook that goes home every night. The parent writes the title of the book and what they noticed the child doing when he was reading. I give suggestions such as fluency, using his finger, etc. any information I need to convey to the parent is written in the book.
Peggi - sadie, ouch! 30 books!
maureen_OH - 30 books in 2 years???
Val - great idea, Pam
jen - how do you know that 1:1 will not be sacrificed for fluency at the early levels
Mary K&1 - Pam, that's another good idea
Sadie - jen, try going down a level or 2 in FR Use your cut-up story.. you can cut it into phrases to practice fluency
Melinda - Yes I have them repeat the phrases but they don't always get faster at them- I even had my TL listen and she couldn't help me since the student knows a lot about words - she's just slow.
Peggi - Pam, do you get many responses back?
smiles - Pam, I like your communication with is very supportive of them.
Doug - Mary- I still feel that giving 10 books when they go off track is a good thing to do even if they move or lose them...I just wanted a pat on the back
Sadie - maureen, I am also in a transient year-round school. I send about 15 books home when we go off track.... 2 students never came back from a break.
KJM - Another good tip..I sew my own book bags for the students. Then I write their names on the bag. They tend to lose less books when they "own" their own bags..
Mary K&1 - I have tried a notebook and a daily log - most don't sign and/or write comments on or in either
Pam - Most of my parents write in the book every night. You always have a few that do not. I explain to them that this is part of their job as the parent.
Peggi - KJM- that's a nice idea!
Mary K&1 - Doug, yes, it's good for the kids to have reading material, but it's hard on your budget
jen - I lost 10 books from one child when she moved over spring break and I had given her a book for each day that was hard i hope she read them
Sadie - jen, it is important to get that 1:1 secure early on
Deb - I've had trouble with the notebook and daily log. Parents just don't respond. Getting them in for a lesson or 2 helps.
maureen_OH - my parents sign every night, but won't always comment. Maybe I need to be clearer about my expectations at the beginnig of the child's program
Pam - After a while the parents only write the title in the book. I am hoping they are still listening to their child read.
smiles - Communicating with the parents is easy..with the book bags. Anyone have ideas for the classroom teachers?
Mary K&1 - I use the Bubblopes from Resources For Reading -  - They have a new name now - they are shiny and durable and hard to lose - for sending books to and from home
maureen_OH - I'm afraid it's too easy to say...go and read your book...give me the paper, I'll sign it!
Pam - Maureen, try writing a list of things to look for when reading and paste it on the first page of the notebook.
Deb - I sometimes use the same parent log with the teacher so we can all comm.
Pam - Great idea Deb. I think I will try that next year.
Doug - I am at the point of giving prizes which is miles from my philosophy. Next year, i am going to make home visits to insure a strong relationship/partnership
jen - one student's parents commment were "done good" each night I think that was alll they knew
Deb - Oh jen that's sad but nice
Doug - Jen- I have had parents do the cut up sentence so the child can "go out and play" LOL
Mary K&1 - yes, most of the parents of the children that we see have limited skills themselves
Deb - Doug, that's happened to me too.
Pam - Doug, maybe the parents need the help as much as the child :-)
Mary K&1 - Those who have good skills are the ones whose children make the best progress
Peggi - Do any of you have Reading Recovery parents in as a group in beginning of year, or just individually?
Deb - speaking of the cut-up---do you have then glue them down, put them back in the envelope or return them in any way?
Doug - Pam- you are very right
jen - though some stories are heartbreaking we seem to have lotsin common
maureen_OH - I'm lucky to get them in at all!
Melinda - I have a question - have any of you done sessions with 2 kids instead of 1. I got bumped out of my job and my new school does it that way. They call it PAIRS and each session is for 40 minutes.
cher - Mine put the cut-ups in a cut-up book and carry the book back and forth in their bag daily.
Mary K&1 - Doug, I've seen the same thing here - once I wanted a child to practice making lower case bs - his mother did it for him LOL!
Gina/MO - Doug--I also started bribing with one girl this year!! I marked a smiley face on "her" calendar that I kept in her binder and if she had 5 smiley faces for the week, she got 1 piece of hard candy on Fri.!! Worked for her!!
Pam - We have tried to have the parents come in on Back to School night in parents so my partner (RR teacher) and I can meet with them and explain the program and how they can help their child. Unfortunately, we haven't even finished testing the children by that time.
Peggi - Deb, no but I send a letter explaining to keep these in a box at home for practice.
KJM - That's not Reading Recovery with 2 students
jen - cher i like that idea but would rr consider it in procedures
Deb - Peggi, how do you know that they do>
Mary K&1 - Marie says that we are not to use rewards or awards, but with some kids you just have to
maureen_OH - Marie Clay would have a fit!
Joan_IN - I have also used bribes to get my books back. Five books returned gets five stickers on a chart and a prize.
KJM - I mean with 2 students at a time
maureen_OH - With 2 students at once, that is
cher - Jen - we learned it from our tl.
smiles - I have each parent come to school to meet with me, discuss the program and sign the contract
Peggi - Deb, I don't. But I keep reminding.
Melinda - kjm - I know but they decided to do it that was because they had so many kids. Most of the rr teachers have a few years of experience
Doug - Mary - you are right. I just don't want to
Mary K&1 - Melinda, do you have a TL?
Deb - It can be so frustrating when you are nor fully implemented
Doug - Mary- what is our topic next month?
Peggi - Smiles, I also did that last year. But someone once mentioned that they had a "tea" or something to get all parents together.
Melinda - Yes but there is little she can do - I need a job and they offered. She hopes they'll pay of continuing contact but doubts it. Also she'd like me to do some research on it
Pam - Peggy, we tried that the first year. We had coffee and cake. Out of 8 parents, 4 showed up. One parent was an hour late.
KJM - Melinda..What does your TL say?
maureen_OH - We tried to "bribe" once with free books if they came to a better attndance, still not great
smiles - I have found they don't come to "group" meetings..and take the indiv. contact more seriously
Mary K&1 - I have the kids check in with me every morning, even the ones I've discontinued or exited - give the disappointed teacher look if they don't have their books - works to keep them at least aware that they are still accountable
Peggi - Smiles, you're right. I think I would have difficulty getting them together.
maureen_OH - We all know that look!!!
KJM - Melinda..It does not sound like your ditrict is very supportive.
Mary K&1 - Doug, we don't have a topic, want to set one?
Doug - Mary- how about for next month-what it really means to follow the kid.
Pam - If the kids don't bring their books back, they aren't allowed to take home another book until they bring them back.
jen - I make my rounds to the classroom to pick up bags saves time later also heightens the awareness for the classroom \teacher
maureen_OH - I do that too,Pam, but I feel so bad about it!
Doug - accepting partially correct responses
Mary K&1 - Doug, that's a good one! That's what it will be! Thanks
KJM - Yes, Pam. That is what I do.
Melinda - Pam that's what I do too. Ususlly it takes a call home to get the books back.
Deb - good job Doug!!
Mary K&1 - Well our time is up. If you want to continue to talk, please do.
smiles - I put a tub outside my door and they drop their book bags in when they arrive..I train them..saves time during the day
Mary K&1 - Thanks all for coming, see you next month. pass the word about our meetings, OK?
KJM - See you next month!!!
maureen_OH - Thanks everyone...this was great!
Pam - I have hall duty in the morning. The kids bring me their bags. This way I know if they are in school.
maureen_OH - When is the next meeting?
Deb - I have really enjoyed this. thanks everyone for the chat. See you all next time.
Gina/MO - Thanks Mary!!
Mary K&1 - Next month - Following the Child
Doug - I go back on Tuesday and ready to start OS testing. If I am not roaming then I will be in trouble
Doug - Yes..thanks Mary...I like your sense of humor
Gina/MO - Good Luck, Doug!!
Doug - bye and once again thanks Mary
Mary K&1 - The 4th monday - July 26th - I think
maureen_OH - Thanks, Mary...see you then!
Mary K&1 - Good night all
maureen_OH - Bye everyone!