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Tompkins defined guided reading as a literacy activity where teachers support childrens reading and writing during guided literacy activities, but unlike modeling or sharing the children actually do the reading. (Tompkins, pg. 18). Students meet with the teacher to read a book on their instructional reading level, and the teacher follows certain guidelines to ensure that their students maximize the activity. First, the teacher introduces the book and guides the students as they begin to read, as the child becomes more comfortable the teacher will release the student to read on their own. After the child completes the assigned reading activity the student and teacher reconvene and discuss important topics in the book and the child often re-reads the book. (Tompkins, pg. 19). Interestingly enough, the author appears to have left out some crucial points that occur in the background like how a child is chosen to be a member in a certain guided reading book level. This paper will discuss those behind the scene assessments but first it will address the interpretive approach it takes to guided reading. Working at the Mason Elementary School, a full inclusion school in the Boston Public School system, the tenants to guided reading looked a little different from that of which Tompkins described. The groups here are very small and the variation between levels are not usually minute but rather huge leaps and bounds. Although, the guided reading process at the Mason has a few more components some of the process described by Tompkins occurred in the two fifth grades that were observed for the purpose of this project. The important difference that Tompkins did not touch upon was the how the teaching style of the teacher can effect the process and in turn the student sour on the idea of reading or rejuvenate the students love of reading. The two teacher who were observed were Carl Ostiguy and Heather Hoffman, are excellent teachers in their own right, but the way in which they approach guided reading yields two very different outcomes in the classroom. Both teachers begin with the Boston Public Schools mandated assessments but their final approach is very different. For instant, Carol is more of a stickler to the rules while Heather has been teaching for a while and approaches the activity like a book talk. After observing both of their styles, my interpretive approach to guided reading is to yes follow all the guidelines that Tompkins laid out, but to remember that the teacher can be the deciding factor. The rational behind why teachers are the deciding factor lies in the fact that Ms. Hoffman is more successful with her students guided reading because of the way she approaches the subject. First and foremost, she assess the children, but when it comes to picking from the guided reading list she is adamant on choosing a book that will hook her students even if it is not on the list or if she has to buy four copies with her own money. Ms. Ostiguy is struggling with her class with respect to reading; although, the struggle is not one that you could clearly see but there still is a struggle. Thus, as the reader will discover that yes guided reading can help build the students confidence, it will increase the tone and flow of theory reading and make them better readers, but the factor that Tompkins and others forgot is how much the teachers style has to do with the success of the student. Carol Ostiguy is a sophomore teacher and she goes by the book when it comes to teaching, during many of her math lessons she has the Turk book in her hand reading form the text, and it is no different when it comes to literacy block. The children are often given structured writing prompts for each session in their writers notebook. Ms. Ostiguy has four guided reading groups, and there are nine children in her classroom, with the average child on an early fourth grade reading level. The high readers are reading The sign of the Beaver, which was selected from rubric sent out by the literacy specialist about he suggested reading for each reading level. The students seem to enjoy the idea of a new novel , however, they are more apt to put down the book to explore another book. For instant, last Friday during reading block the Scholastic books came in and many of the students received new books, many of the selections were already read in earlier grades and a couple of students ordered the Guinness Book of World Records. It took Ms. Ostiguy several attempts to get the children to refocus their attention to the guided reading books. I also noticed that the books are often referred to as their guided reading books, which seems to add to the separation between the guided reading books and actual fun books. The contrast was so sharp that on this particular Friday the children in the low level hadnt answered their assigned guided reading questions. Two out of three of them decided to look at the pictures of the Guinness Book of World Records instead of reading about Amelia Bedelia. In order to better focus the observation, this paper will discuss individual student in Ms. Ostiguy's classroom. The student that I focus on in that class is Emmanuel, he has been diagnosis with ADHD, but he is not medicated so he unlike the other students is not able to sit still for any period of time. He is not like Toya, in my Ms. Hoffmans class, his cognitive ability is high and he can comprehend a great deal of the his reading but that is only when the teacher practically sits on him and forces him to concentrate, and at the end he and the teacher are mentally exhausted. Nonetheless, the main technique that I use with him is more of interactive reading instead of guided reading, this way we both share the responsibility for the reading. Since guided reading is hard for him and he tends to get too distracted and in model reading he is not apart of the process the interactive approach is best. Interactive reading is a good medium because he has some stake in what is being done, and believe me he is very aware when it is his turn to read. Ms. Ostiguy hopes to transition him to guided reading later on in the year, when we can figure out how to get his foster parents to make him take his pills. In conclusion, I want to stress that my observation have not yielded the conclusion that Ms. Ostiguys method is more successful than Ms. Hoffman because she has a couple of students that need that structure, but guided reading looks completely different in each classroom. In Ms. Ostiguys class it looks like a chore while in Ms. Hoffmans class it is a shared experience. Ms. Hoffman has been teaching at the Mason for eight years and has built a repertoire as being fun but stern with her students. Her entire style of teaching is more relax and I suspect that her relaxation is a product of time. Nevertheless, she administers guiding reading in an more theatric approach, in other words, when she chooses a book she ignores the reading list and gages what kind of book the kids would like to read. She approaches the students with a choice of two books and they able to choose the order in which they read the book. Her approach helps to foster a community of learners, where the children have a semblance of choice, but as most great teacher do she allows the children to think that they have complete control over what happens in the classroom, but all the time the teacher is the one pulling the puppet strings. Ms. Hoffman does not give assigned reading questions, each child is responsible to contribute to the book discussion. During the group interaction they meet in the coffee corner and discuss the topics in the various books. Unfortunately, this is only for the groups that are in a higher level reading group, although the others meet in the coffee corner she listens to the other groups read and they participate more of the traditional guided reading model. The student that I focus on in this class is Toya and her cognitive level and interest level in anything is very low. She decodes on an early third grade level as well, and her comprehension of text is around the same level as well. She is currently reading Amelia Bedelia Helps Out, she is an adamant sound-outer, her resource teacher is a firm believer in phonics but Toya has issues when she comes to a word that she has told herself that she cannot read. Ms. Hoffman and I are trying to teach her how to break down the word, because many words have words in them that she may know. We are trying to help her use a more balance approach to reading, because as a good teacher knows she needs to combine both skills in order for her to read. If nothing else this approach will give her more options and too many African American children have their options taken away from them too many times. In conclusion, Tompkins may have outlined the guiding principals that help foster effective guided reading but one of the principals or factors that also help is the approach the teacher takes to guided reading it can bring to life guiding reading or it can seem like a chore. Ms. Ostiguys approach although it may not look as child-study orientated as Ms. Hoffmans but her approach does reflect the balance method approach except in one respect. Tompkins outlined the principals to balance approach to literacy and her first tenant states that literacy is viewed comprehensively as both involving reading and writing. ( Tompkins, pg. 15). Although, Ostiguy is following all of the rules and her kids are reading at the levels to which they tested in, the guiding reading process seems to be separated from the rest of the curriculum. Unlike in Ms. Hoffmans class where the books are integrated into the curriculum, for example, today Sherome, who is reading Stealing Home, a biography of Jackie Robinson, looked him up on the internet as extra credit for social studies. Hoffman appears to be following the second and sixth characteristic of a balance program, because she is making sure that literacy is at the heart of the program, and the students are reading in the content area. Sherome is going to make presentation on Jackie Robinson later on in the month and he was the one that suggested the endeavor. It is unfair to predict which program will yield life long readers, Ms. Ostiguys approach structures the reading and writing and maybe there is separation so that her students can concentrate on one agenda at a time. Structure is a needed element in her classroom, Emmanuel is living testament to the importance of structure. Like Tompkins stated in her book teachers no longer have to choose an approach to literacy, they can combine both sides of the same coin.
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Guided Reading as a Literacy Activity essay
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Guided Reading As A Literacy Activity Essay

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              Tompkins defined guided reading as a literacy activity where teachers support childrens reading and writing during guided literacy activities, but unlike modeling or sharing the children actually do the reading. (Tompkins, pg. 18). Students meet with the teacher to read a book on their instructional reading level, and the teacher follows certain guidelines to ensure that their students maximize the activity. First, the teacher introduces the book and guides the students as they begin to read, as the child becomes more comfortable the teacher will release the student to read on their own. After the child completes the assigned reading activity the student and teacher reconvene and discuss important topics in the book and the child often re-reads the book. (Tompkins, pg. 19). Interestingly enough, the author appears to have left out some crucial points that occur in the background like how a child is chosen to be a member in a certain guided reading book level. This paper will discuss those behind the scene assessments but first it will address the interpretive approach it takes to guided reading.
             
              Working at the Mason Elementary School, a full inclusion school in the Boston Public School system, the tenants to guided reading looked a little different from that of which Tompkins described. The groups here are very small and the variation between levels are not usually minute but rather huge leaps and bounds. Although, the guided reading process at the Mason has a few more components some of the process described by Tompkins occurred in the two fifth grades that were observed for the purpose of this project. The important difference that Tompkins did not touch upon was the how the teaching style of the teacher can effect the process and in turn the student sour on the idea of reading or rejuvenate the students love of reading. The two teacher who were observed were Carl Ostiguy and Heather Hoffman, are excellent teachers in their own right, but the way in which they approach guided reading yields two very different outcomes in the classroom. Both teachers begin with the Boston Public Schools mandated assessments but their final approach is very different. For instant, Carol is more of a stickler to the rules while Heather has been teaching for a while and approaches the activity like a book talk. After observing both of their styles, my interpretive approach to guided reading is to yes follow all the guidelines that Tompkins laid out, but to remember that the teacher can be the deciding factor. The rational behind why teachers are the deciding factor lies in the fact that Ms. Hoffman is more successful with her students guided reading because of the way she approaches the subject. First and foremost, she assess the children, but when it comes to picking from the guided reading list she is adamant on choosing a book that will hook her students even if it is not on the list or if she has to buy four copies with her own money. Ms. Ostiguy is struggling with her class with respect to reading; although, the struggle is not one that you could clearly see but there still is a struggle. Thus, as the reader will discover that yes guided reading can help build the students confidence, it will increase the tone and flow of theory reading and make them better readers, but the factor that Tompkins and others forgot is how much the teachers style has to do with the success of the student.
             
              Carol Ostiguy is a sophomore teacher and she goes by the book when it comes to teaching, during many of her math lessons she has the Turk book in her hand reading form the text, and it is no different when it comes to literacy block. The children are often given structured writing prompts for each session in their writers notebook. Ms. Ostiguy has four guided reading groups, and there are nine children in her classroom, with the average child on an early fourth grade reading level. The high readers are reading The sign of the Beaver, which was selected from rubric sent out by the literacy specialist about he suggested reading for each reading level. The students seem to enjoy the idea of a new novel , however, they are more apt to put down the book to explore another book. For instant, last Friday during reading block the Scholastic books came in and many of the students received new books, many of the selections were already read in earlier grades and a couple of students ordered the Guinness Book of World Records. It took Ms. Ostiguy several attempts to get the children to refocus their attention to the guided reading books. I also noticed that the books are often referred to as their guided reading books, which seems to add to the separation between the guided reading books and actual fun books. The contrast was so sharp that on this particular Friday the children in the low level hadnt answered their assigned guided reading questions. Two out of three of them decided to look at the pictures of the Guinness Book of World Records instead of reading about Amelia Bedelia. In order to better focus the observation, this paper will discuss individual student in Ms. Ostiguy's classroom.
             
              The student that I focus on in that class is Emmanuel, he has been diagnosis with ADHD, but he is not medicated so he unlike the other students is not able to sit still for any period of time. He is not like Toya, in my Ms. Hoffmans class, his cognitive ability is high and he can comprehend a great deal of the his reading but that is only when the teacher practically sits on him and forces him to concentrate, and at the end he and the teacher are mentally exhausted. Nonetheless, the main technique that I use with him is more of interactive reading instead of guided reading, this way we both share the responsibility for the reading. Since guided reading is hard for him and he tends to get too distracted and in model reading he is not apart of the process the interactive approach is best. Interactive reading is a good medium because he has some stake in what is being done, and believe me he is very aware when it is his turn to read. Ms. Ostiguy hopes to transition him to guided reading later on in the year, when we can figure out how to get his foster parents to make him take his pills. In conclusion, I want to stress that my observation have not yielded the conclusion that Ms. Ostiguys method is more successful than Ms. Hoffman because she has a couple of students that need that structure, but guided reading looks completely different in each classroom. In Ms. Ostiguys class it looks like a chore while in Ms. Hoffmans class it is a shared experience.
             
              Ms. Hoffman has been teaching at the Mason for eight years and has built a repertoire as being fun but stern with her students. Her entire style of teaching is more relax and I suspect that her relaxation is a product of time. Nevertheless, she administers guiding reading in an more theatric approach, in other words, when she chooses a book she ignores the reading list and gages what kind of book the kids would like to read. She approaches the students with a choice of two books and they able to choose the order in which they read the book. Her approach helps to foster a community of learners, where the children have a semblance of choice, but as most great teacher do she allows the children to think that they have complete control over what happens in the classroom, but all the time the teacher is the one pulling the puppet strings. Ms. Hoffman does not give assigned reading questions, each child is responsible to contribute to the book discussion. During the group interaction they meet in the coffee corner and discuss the topics in the various books. Unfortunately, this is only for the groups that are in a higher level reading group, although the others meet in the coffee corner she listens to the other groups read and they participate more of the traditional guided reading model.
             
              The student that I focus on in this class is Toya and her cognitive level and interest level in anything is very low. She decodes on an early third grade level as well, and her comprehension of text is around the same level as well. She is currently reading Amelia Bedelia Helps Out, she is an adamant sound-outer, her resource teacher is a firm believer in phonics but Toya has issues when she comes to a word that she has told herself that she cannot read. Ms. Hoffman and I are trying to teach her how to break down the word, because many words have words in them that she may know. We are trying to help her use a more balance approach to reading, because as a good teacher knows she needs to combine both skills in order for her to read. If nothing else this approach will give her more options and too many African American children have their options taken away from them too many times. In conclusion, Tompkins may have outlined the guiding principals that help foster effective guided reading but one of the principals or factors that also help is the approach the teacher takes to guided reading it can bring to life guiding reading or it can seem like a chore.
             
              Ms. Ostiguys approach although it may not look as child-study orientated as Ms. Hoffmans but her approach does reflect the balance method approach except in one respect. Tompkins outlined the principals to balance approach to literacy and her first tenant states that literacy is viewed comprehensively as both involving reading and writing. ( Tompkins, pg. 15). Although, Ostiguy is following all of the rules and her kids are reading at the levels to which they tested in, the guiding reading process seems to be separated from the rest of the curriculum. Unlike in Ms. Hoffmans class where the books are integrated into the curriculum, for example, today Sherome, who is reading Stealing Home, a biography of Jackie Robinson, looked him up on the internet as extra credit for social studies. Hoffman appears to be following the second and sixth characteristic of a balance program, because she is making sure that literacy is at the heart of the program, and the students are reading in the content area. Sherome is going to make presentation on Jackie Robinson later on in the month and he was the one that suggested the endeavor. It is unfair to predict which program will yield life long readers, Ms. Ostiguys approach structures the reading and writing and maybe there is separation so that her students can concentrate on one agenda at a time. Structure is a needed element in her classroom, Emmanuel is living testament to the importance of structure. Like Tompkins stated in her book teachers no longer have to choose an approach to literacy, they can combine both sides of the same coin.
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