I am so excited to be part of The Daily 5 Second Edition Book Study and to be linking up with Freebielicious and Seusstastic. Join us throughout the month as we discuss the newest book by The 2 Sisters we know and love, Gail Boushey & Joann Moser. If you have not been doing The Daily 5 the past few years then you are in for a treat. My whole classroom dynamic has changed dramatically! If you have been doing it, then I think you are going to be in for a pleasant surprise with some changes and additions that have been made.
Before I go any further, I HIGHLY suggest you pick up your own copy. I am a huge fan of highlighting, note taking, and dog earring pages I must refer back to. It isn't uncommon to see the book on my lap in the first few days of introducing The Daily 5 to my sweet kiddos with notes pointing each and every direction. So hurry, go add it to your Amazon account!
Chapter 1: That Was Then, This Is Now: How the Daily 5 Has Evolved
I was reading this chapter in the car when my family and I were heading to Chicago. At one point I closed the book and just stared off into space. My husband looked at me wondering what the heck was wrong with me. I told him that I felt like I had more freedom with how I structure Daily 5 in my classroom with the changes. It was such a weight lifted off of my shoulders!
In the past I was trying so hard to fit in each rotation everyday. It was next to impossible with the crazy schedule I have to keep. So I began breaking (in my mind) The Daily 5 law. I was ashamed and embarrassed. Sad I know! I began doing a few rounds during my Literacy block in the morning and then I would do a few rounds during my RTI time. Some kids were missing out because they were going to pull-out groups. It was stressing me out!
OMG I have been let off the law breaking hook! They now are leaning towards 3 rounds of Daily 5. That I can do! This way students, once they build their stamina, are able to work for longer periods in a round. Better for the students and teacher? I would say so! They have also given the go ahead to break it up into pieces if our schedule just doesn't have the flow needed: focus lesson, recess, round 1, etc.
They now have 2 "have-to" rounds of Read to Self and Work on Writing. I love this because I felt my students were constantly gravitating towards Listen to Reading or Word Work, and they didn't need that constant practice in that area. Those students such as English Language Learners may need 5-10 minutes of Listen to Reading and then they can move onto the "have-to" list. You may have a student struggling with some phonics skills, give them a timer for 10 minutes and send them to the Word Work area. My mind is blown because I had never thought of structuring my time this way.
The last addition that I am super excited about is the introduction of Math Daily 3. I have been struggling all year to get something like this going in my classroom. I can't wait to read on to see how they have structured it. I think this will make a tremendous difference in my daily struggle in Math with my kiddos.
Chapter 2: Our Core Beliefs: The Foundations of the Daily 5
Trust and Respect
The portion of the chapter focuses on giving the students trust and not filling their hands with "activities" that are unauthentic. If you give the students the skills and strategies they will go much further at becoming more independent and building stamina. This trust is especially important when working with your students in one-on-one or small group situations. You also need to trust that each student is doing their very best and that is all you can ask of them at that moment.
With the sense of community established students will feel comfortable cheering one another on or putting them on the right path to building comprehension and fluency skills.
So many times I wanted to take the choice factor away from my kiddos. I just felt like they couldn't handle making the right choices for themselves. But throughout my experience and reading I have learned that it is quite the opposite. Students WILL work harder for what they want to do! Aren't we all like that?
Students are now accountable for choosing a great place in the room where they can sit and be engaged in an activity or their volume during work time. This leaves us the freedom to be working meaningfully with small groups.
I always relate reading to baseball. I ask them how you get better at baseball and they ALWAYS tell me, "by practicing". I tell them that is exactly how you get better with reading too. It shocks them every time! The 2 Sisters recommend keeping your focus lessons short and sweet, so that the students have the most practice time they can get. They teach with a 20/80 ratio. 20% of your time should be spent teaching and 80% of their time should be spent practicing. This makes perfect sense to me.
Transitions as Brain and Body Breaks
I can't wait to read what The 2 Sisters have in store for the rest of the book! My wheels are already turning and I have only been on summer break for 3 days. Oy!! I hope you have found some of this information helpful. Here is a little Daily 5 freebie I have created. Enjoy!
This FREE product is not endorsed or approved by The 2 Sisters.