Summer learning and guided reading

This summer has been a whirlwind of teaching and learning! So far, I have been fortunate enough to be able to teach a week-long class to a small group of teachers who are getting their ESL endorsement, plan and deliver a Spanish camp to a group of passionate educators, and plan several more presentations that I will be giving in the near future! So lucky! 🍀

Today I sit here reflecting as I popped into a colleague’s guided reading workshop all impromptu-style and am marveling about how much there still is to learn about something I thought I had already mastered in my first two years of teaching in Texas! It is true that the art of teaching and learning is constantly evolving and to be the best educator, a person must never stop. 🤔

  • Today I have learned that teaching guided reading really involves understanding the initial assessment (in this case, TRC). This means when designing guided reading groups, just because a group of students may appear to be at the same level, (level B, for example) if you probe deeper into their running records, you can find out a LOT more that may make you decide to put one of these students in a level C group, or move another to a level A group!
  • Another nugget for our ESL crew: using the Jan Richardson book “The Next Step Forward in Guided Reading”  is going to open up lots in the way of PD! Looking through and thinking about how to differentiate it for English Learners, I stumbled across an article that comments on how to teach sight words: 

The idea is this: teaching sight words to ELs in guided reading may need to be done quite differently depending on their language proficiency level. 

What do you think of this? What about some of the ideas in the article? How do you teach sight or memory words to students? I’d love to hear your thoughts below! 😊


2 thoughts on “Summer learning and guided reading

  1. Have you ever heard of 20 Word Chants? Here’s the first one:

    Here are 20 words you need, if you want to write and read:
    on, my, was, I
    in, see, for, me
    has, at, are, that
    the, we, and, he
    like, to, can, you
    Learn these words, and you’ll read, too!

    The idea came from a resource we had a long time ago that included videos of teachers. Kristen Gray put together a set of resources based on one of the videos. It includes word cards, the words in phrases, the words in sentences, and bilingual (Spanish) lists, too, There are 5 chants… the first 100 words. (Let me know if you are interested and I will email them to you.)

    Also, a book on Guided Reading that I really like is Who’s Doing the Work? How to Say Less so Readers Can Do More by Jan Burkins and Kim Yaris. You can preview the book on Also they have a blog at

    Liked by 1 person

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