Daily 5 Second Edition Book Study: Chapters 3 & 4

Big thanks to the Freebielicious girls for hosting the 2nd Edition Book Study!!!  Be sure to stop by every Friday this month to see all of the thoughts on the new edition.  You can find the link up at Seusstastic.  Last week I covered Chapters 1 & 2.  You can catch up {here}.

If you don't have the newest book yet you need to stop reading and go put it in your Amazon cart right away.  It is a wonderful resource to highlight and dog ear.

Chapter 3: The 10 Steps to Teaching and Learning Independence

The 10 steps have not really changed from the previous book, but they look a bit different:

Step 1: 
Identify What is to Be Taught-  
I may not admit it in public, but I love when I go to a workshop and the instructor goes over or hands out an agenda.  I thrive off of it.  I have a shorter attention span than my 5 year old I think!  The Sister's agree with this philosophy as well, so they use I-charts to introduce the steps of Daily 5.  The I stands for Independence.  In the past when I read to use I-charts I started to and then as they became similar I stopped making them or would throw them away.  I felt that no one was using them.  Boy was I wrong!  This would be like going in without the agenda at a workshop.  I wish you knew how often I refer to schedules, agendas, and my calendar.  I am obsessed with keeping tabs on things.  I was taking this control away from kids.  No more!!

Step 2: 
Set a Purpose and Create a Sense of Urgency-
Short and simple... students need to understand why they are working on this task.  If they don't understand the end result they won't see the need for it.  When they see the need that will naturally create the urgency of which they perform the task.

Step 3: 
Record Desired Behaviors on an I-Chart-
It is so important to explain each expectation of Daily 5 to your students on an I-chart, so they can refer and review it often.  The expectations are: read the whole time, stay in one spot, get started right away, work quietly, and build stamina.  I can recall a few times when my class had just fallen apart with these expectations.  I would regroup them and give the lecture of a lectures.  I can remember angrily writing them on the board and go through what each one meant again.  What I failed to realize was their demise was my fault.  I didn't have the expectations posted anywhere and instead of angrily writing and explaining I needed to get them practicing again.  They got too used to me being lenient on the desired behaviors and they did what kids do and took the ball and ran with it.  Teacher fail!  Next year those I-charts are going to be up and reviewed and practiced often!!
These are from Faith Wheeler.  I used these this past school year.  So cute!

Step 4: 
Model Most-Desirable Behaviors-

Step 5: 
Model Least-Desirable Behaviors, Then Most-Desirable Behaviors Again-

Steps 4 & 5 are a kid favorite.  What kid doesn't like to have the floor, especially you barometer kids (the ones who dictate the weather in your classroom).  The kids love to cheer each other on for modeling the correct way and they ADORE watching the wrong behaviors.  This strategy really sticks with them.  The Sisters recommend not modeling the least-desirable behaviors with the kinder kiddos.  They get a little confused.  What is especially great is each student sees exactly what is expected and your "one" kiddo has been seen modeling the correct way.  This is where you really grow your sense of community in the classroom.

Step 6:
Place Students Around the Room-
I prefer assigned seats for the first few introductions of Read to Self.  This does a few things for me.  1) They get to see all of the awesome choices of places to sit and 2) I get to show them proper placement and put them in a place for success.  The Sisters recommend letting groups of 5 or so choose their seat from day 1, but also give them the little voice asking, "is this a place where I can be successful?". This helps build the needed independence.

Step 7:
Practice and Build Stamina-
NEVER use a timer to start or stop Daily 5.  It is important to allow the students to build stamina at their own pace.  Their is a stamina chart included in the book, but I think it would be fun to do a class bulletin board with stairs climbing towards the goal.  It would be a great visual to show the students how far they have come.

I love this chart from Lisa at Growing Firsties!!!
Step 8:
Stay Out of the Way-
I have a horrible habit of walking around the classroom.  I feel like if someone walks in and I am not walking around the classroom I am going to be in trouble.  The problem with that is I am creating little needy cling-ons!  Their independence counts on my being right there.  No good I tell you!  I can't lead a successful small group while constantly being interrupted.  Side story:  My principal was evaluating me for RISE one day and one of my students was out with a Title tutor.  When she came back all of the adults were with a small group and the students were in a rotation.  She located her group immediately, hopped in, and the girls filled her in on what they were doing.  My principal was so impressed on how I never had to direct her or anyone to do what they were supposed to be doing.  Proud teacher moment!

Step 9:
Use a Quiet Signal to Bring Students Back to the Gathering Place-
I am a loud teacher.  I can't help it.  I am a quiet person, but get me in front of a bunch of 6 and 7 year olds and I become a performing monkey.  I am not helping the kiddos at all.  If they can't hear me they don't listen.  Needless to say I will be in search of a wind chime this summer to use as my quiet signal.  It sounds like such a soothing and quiet way to bring them back together.

Step 10:
Conduct a Group Check-In; Ask, "How Did It Go?"
In the original book it was a thumbs up or sideways to reflect on how they behaved during D5.  I would have a few kiddos who were honest and put it sideways, but it was never the kids who I knew were a thumbs sideways.  It took everything I had not to call them out.  The Sisters have started using a number system.

1. Below Standard
2. Approaching Standard
3. Meeting Standard
4. Exceeding Standard

I feel like the students will be willing to be a little more honest about their performance with the new number system.  After they rate themselves it is important to set goals for next time.  I am a huge fan of turn and talk.  Each student gets to say their answer and I get to hear the general conversation.  I make sure to use a signal to bring them back together.

Chapter 4:  What Do You Need to Begin the Daily 5?

I was surprised when they said you don't need much to begin.  I feel like I prepare a ton of things to get going.  It doesn't have to be that complicated.  Here is what you need:

The Quiet Symbol

Chart Rack or Interactive Whiteboard- 
I use an easel.  I feel like the paper is large enough and the whole class can see it when seated on the floor.

Tools, Not Toys- 
This includes different timers, manipulatives, and alternate texts.  This will help your barometer kiddos build their stamina in their own way.

Book Boxes- 
 I bought some cardboard boxes from Really Good Stuff.  They lasted a year and then they kept falling apart.  I brought them home and took the duct tape to them.  It was quite a project, but it prolonged the life of my boxes.  I think they next purchase will be a sturdy yet flexible plastic basket.

A Gathering Place and Focus Lessons-  
Gathering places are essential for maintaining focus during the meet-ups and also encourages participation.  I also found out that my focus lessons should only be as long as the age of the kids.  Mine are pretty short, but not that short.  That explains a little. :)

As I said before, this will become part of our daily landscape.  I believe in the power of I-charts after reading about how important they are.

Classroom Design-
I always struggle if I should have designated stations where things happen.  My goal is to have different areas set up where the different activities can happen.  I need a little organization in my life and that seems like a great place to start!
I love how he is so comfy he doesn't have shoes on!

I hope you are enjoying my take on the book study.  I am a little new to the whole book study thing.  I would love to hear your comments, questions or suggestions.


Here is a {FREEBIE} of Daily 5 and Cafe signs you can use to display an agenda or as an alternate way to have students sign up for rotations.  


  1. Love the freebie! Thanks for linking up!
    First Grade Blue SKies

  2. Thank you Jennifer! So excited to be able to link up. Thank you!


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