6. Researching Facts -- Reading and writing facts about the different animals the
class is studying. The kids record facts on paper, posters, bookmarks, booklets.
The students love this activity. This activity is part of our literacy centers
after Christmas vacation.
7. Pass the book (idea from the book, On Their Way, page 58) Teacher reads the
book. When the teacher senses everyone wants to talk about a book she passes the
book to a student saying, "Tell what you noticed about the book and pass it along.
Please don't repeat what has already been said." Children flip through the book for
more ideas. Kids love this activity. I often see the kids "playing school" passing
8. 9 minute research paper.
1 minute find something to read
3 minutes read
5 minutes write
Step 1: Put a variety of books, magazines, articles on the table for each group
(enough for each group to have one per individual plus an extra). Tell the students
they must look at the books to pick a subject the entire time. If they find a
topic, they put their hand on the subject and keep looking. Teacher times one
minute. After the one minute limit, each child writes the topic at the top of his
Step 2: The child is then told to read for the entire three minutes. NO WRITING and
NO TALKING. After the three minute limit, each child puts the book on the floor.
Step 3: The child then writes for 5 minutes. NO looking back at the book. No
talking. They must write the whole time.
Teachers could have the students read what they wrote. Go back and read again and
repeat the process. Several teachers have them do a 9 minute research for 4 days.
On day five, the kids read their 4 previous writes and then write a final report on
9. Are the kids really reading during SSR? Give the students 5 sticky notes to
indicate the events leading to the conclusion. Another technique is to hand the
child 1 sticky note and ask them to find the part in the story that supports that
10. Sticky notes are powerful things. I read poems with my class. I give each
child a sticky note and have them bookmark the page with a favorite poem on it.
Then I leave the sticky notes in the books. All week the class reads each others'
11. Use a graphic organizer to help the reader focus.
12. A story pyramid is like an outline. It consists of:
main character (1 word)
describe character (2 words)
setting (3 words)
problem (4 words)
an event (5 words)
an event (6 words
an event (7 words)
the solution (8 words)