KinderGals: Are You Getting the Most From Your Literacy Centers?

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Sunday, January 10, 2016

Are You Getting the Most From Your Literacy Centers?

How are your literacy centers going?  One thing that is often missing from a literacy center block is a mini lesson. Read on to see how Deanna and I use mini lessons to get the most from our center time.

December, as always, is a blur. So many great family memories were made! I decided at the beginning of the month that I wasn't going to beat myself up over not being perfect! I didn't blog (or did I), I didn't work on resources....I worked on making those memories! My heart, be still, I love those babies!!!
Peek at My Week
But, I'm back with a peek at our week of winter.  Here are the things we are doing this week. You can download these plans here


Literacy Centers
Ever reached the point in your day where you just can't give anymore? You just can't do another large group activity? You decide you have two choices--send them to centers or put in a movie! We have all been there!  But, how do we really get the most from our centers? One of the things that Deanna Jump and I decided to do was to add a mini lesson before center time. We wanted to set our centers up just like we would readers and writers workshop. A time when we started with a mini lesson to teach a new concept. Guys...this has been HUGE! It has made a ton of difference.  Here's what I think:

Mini Lesson Benefits

  • It made us really look at what needed to be taught, not just plan activities to keep them busy.
  • It made us think deeply about each standard, unpack, and plan lessons that would take kids to a deeper level of understanding of that standard.
  • It allowed us to use a framework that we truly believe in.
  • It structured the lessons so that we taught a little and practiced a little.
  • It allowed us to visit the same concept over several days.
  • It gave us a way to introduce concepts that we could later use as a have to center activity or to scaffold our kids for can do centers.
Here's an example of this week's mini lessons that will occur before centers.  We took the concept of children needing to know the difference between letters, words, and sentences and created two weeks worth of mini lessons.  Now, at the end of the week they will not only know that "can" is a word, but they will know WHY and WHAT!
These are the anchor charts of mini lessons that we will use this month. You can find those anchor charts here.
 
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23 comments:

Erica said...

Such a great idea. Will definitely implement this in my classroom.:)

Amanda Talley said...

I love the format of your lesson plans!

Unknown said...

I love this idea!

Jessica Lee said...

The "words" mini-lesson is so simple yet it helps you easily recall everything students need to learn about words that we often take for granted. Great resource!

Christine F. said...

Looks great !

Kelly said...

You are so organized! Love the mini lesson idea.

Unknown said...

Awesome resources and guidance I have been needing!

Kristin Schoolmeester said...

I love doing mini lessons before centers, kids like to DO! and a quick lesson will help them focus.

Meghan said...

Maybe this will keep me organized!

meriley5 said...

So appreciate that this not only introduces the words but the meanings & concepts behind them.

Holly_dillard said...

I love mini lessons! At this age attention spans are so short that I've found mini lessons are the most effective way to teach everything.

Kim McNeil said...

Love the colorful and cute graphics!!

Stephanie D said...

Great ideas!

Lynn Scales said...

Such great ideas!!

Karen Harris said...

Thank you for sharing your great ideas!

Lindsay McGrane said...

I love these anchor charts! I clicked the link and was pleasantly surprised to realize that I attended a workshop where the presenter was the same person who created these materials. These will make it so easy for young learners to take ownership for their learning!

Kristin Moritz said...

Great ideas as always!

Marty Clayton said...

Love your ideas! Thank you so much for sharing them!

Katie Z said...

Great ideas for centers. Thank you!

Meghan said...

I love "centers made easy!" We use them everyday. I love that everything is based on the standards and follows a progression. The centers that go with are great as well!! :) Thank you so much!

Krystal Catlin said...

I love the idea of doing a mini-lesson before centers. Thanks for the great resources!

Misty Mehrkens said...

Everything is so organized. A lot of great ideas for centers!

Misty Mehrkens said...

Everything is so organized. A lot of great ideas for centers!

 
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