|While at White Marsh Elementary, we were impressed by Laurie McGrath’s ability to have many group activities going on at once—with all students on task! We asked her to tell us about her classroom management methods and she told us audiobooks are the key. Here’s what she said…|
Small novel groups
“I usually start one group listening while I am having a discussion with a second group, and a third group is working independently. I then switch groups. The discussion group works independently, the listening group goes to discussion, and the independent group listens.”
Each group then gets to listen and discuss the novel in three different ways, keeping things exciting and making sure all learning needs are addressed.
Whole class listening
“We usually listen to two chapters with audiobooks as a whole class (using the boombox while students follow along in the print book) each day, have a skill discussion, and have a quiz. After doing that for a few days we then switch it up for a day or two where the students read aloud or partner read, or I read aloud. Then we go back to listening to the audiobook chapters for a few days.”
This way, they get to listen to the modeled reading for a few days, then get to practice the skills they’ve picked up on during partner reads or read alouds. It also helps differentiate instruction.
“I also have a group that sees the reading instructional resource teacher three or four days a week. They are not part of the three small novel groups I have going, so I have them either listening to an audiobook or listening to a Playaway when they are in the classroom for novel time (when the rest of the class rotates through groups). This allows them to listen to a novel even though they are not part of one of the novel groups.”
“I let the students checkout the audiobooks/CD player or Playaways that we are not currently using in novel groups. When they are finished they hand it back in and another student can listen.”
Mrs. McGrath’s classroom reading methods support the kids and motivate them to continue reading on their own. This independent reading will reinforce what they’ve learned in class and give them extra practice—while they’re having fun!
Do you use any similar methods in your classroom?