How To Level Books Fountas And Pinnell

Advice needed from third grade teachers..

I moved to a different area a few years ago and have been trying since I got here to get a job in the public school system. I finally succeeded and have been given a third grade classroom. My background is in PreK and Kindergarten (I taught these grades for 8 years in another state). I have worked with inner city,…

I’ve taught multi-age 1st-3rd for several years now and I also taught kindergarten. By far my favorite grade is 3rd. Why? Mostly they can read and read well. Their writing is fun to read and it is fun to teach them because they can try different skills. Lastly they are so independent but still love school.Yes, you will have to teach some small group especially in reading / spelling for 3rd grade. Whoever said that is a poor teacher. You have to. You might get kids that have early 2nd grade reading skills or writing skills. I do know that small group work in this grade isn’t for every student necessarily. You will need to spend way more time with a certain group of kids(lower ones) way more than say the older ones.I suggest Fountas Pinnell Benchmarks book (brand new)- great resource because it pinpoints specific things to be taught in this age group.I use words their way for spelling / vocab study. Easy to follow workbooks that differentiate.I would use a writers and reader’s workshop model for literacy.

What are some good (and appropriate) topics to write about in a writer’s journal.

Here are some example topics: family, friends, problems, trips/vacations, etc. Any ideas?

I’m a fifth grade teacher and love using the writing journal as a way to differentiate and assess the students level of writing. For most students I start the year out with prompts I’ve pulled for a guided reading and writer’s workshop from Fountas and Pinnell. I also like the book 325 Creative Prompts for Personal Journals by J.A. Senn and Mona Mark. It’s broken up into chapters of different genres like narrative writing, story writing, autobiographical writing, etc. I use it for fifth grade but I believe its geared towards older students. I picked up my copy at Borders but I’ve seen it on-line at scholastic.com for less money.Once they get the hang of writing to a prompt for a sustained amount of time I start with different styles of poetry. I put an example on the overhead and ask them to a) reflect it’s style in their journal and b)mimic its style. After poetry, we’re on to quotes. They write about their meaning and the feeling the evoke. I try to connect these to the people we study in Social Studies, everyone from Native American Chiefs to Founding Fathers and current politicians. A fun assignment is to come up with your own quote and explain what it means to you (and why would someone else use it).For AG/advanced students, I encourage them to pick a type of figurative language (metaphors, hyperbole) and write around that concept. I also push them to develop their own prompts and share them with their group. I’ll also pick appropriate articles out Time mag, the newspaper, etc. and use them to have the students reflect on an event or even try out their persuasive writing when they agree/don’t agree with views expressed within (editorials are great for that).I know my response was more about how I use WJ more so than topics, but I hope it still helps.

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How can I manually level children’s books.

I tutor students in reading once a week, and right now the bookshelf of 1,000+ books is very disorganized and the books are not leveled. During each session, students choose a book from the shelf and read it with the volunteer. Because the books are not assigned a level, students often choose a book that is too…

Type a few pages into Microsoft Word and then see what the readability formula chooses for a level.

How can I manually level children’s books.

I tutor students in reading once a week, and right now the bookshelf of 1,000+ books is very disorganized and the books are not leveled. During each session, students choose a book from the shelf and read it with the volunteer. Because the books are not assigned a level, students often choose a book that is too…

It may depend on what technology you have available. A scanner with OCR software (optical character recognition) could scan a sample of several pages and do an automatic count of words / characters as a first step. Have not checked, but these days there may even be an app for that.Another possibility is voice recognition software. Read a page into Word for Windows and let it do the counting. I know older versions even did a grade approximation so we could raise or lower the complexity of documents for different audiences. Again, there may be a voice rec ognition app that might work.I also found a blog online that has hints on how to use page number method to do a rough level estimate. It may have other good hints for you. It mentions a method where you have a child read one page and if they miss 5 or more words, it is above their level. This may help if you have some students whose level you know, who communicate well and who would be willing to help out the grownups.http://www.books4yourkids.com/2009/11/re…

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