I realized I haven't updated on our Daily 5 progress. It's really the Daily 4 in our room and we call it "Daily 4 Literacy". We have spent the first three weeks of school building our stamina and practicing some behaviors I want to see when they are working independently. For the most part, the kids do a pretty good job. They are a competitive group so they really wanted to outdo themselves on their stamina building each day. I do have a few kiddos who are more squirrel-ish than the others...but honestly if they aren't bothering anyone and go back to their book in less than 30 seconds, I don't make a fuss. We talked about that when we built up our stamina...sometimes we need to yawn or stretch or scratch our head. As long as we go right back to reading, it's good.
Our neighbor class is kind of loud (not obnoxiously but since our "bump out" area doesn't have a door, if one class is silent, the other class sounds louder than it probably is) but they did an awesome job maintaining their stamina even with those distractions :)
We made it up to our 20 minutes on Wednesday. I didn't think that was too bad since we don't have a formal Daily 4 time on Friday (due to art and computer lab time wherein they are required to take the weekly reading street test) so I didn't think that was too awful since we built that stamina up in 9 school days!
The CRAFT menu has several strategies on it (we've reinforced a couple of them as well since they are important so I haven't put up a ton yet) and we've worked in our interactive notebooks. Monday will be the real test....we finally finished all of our baseline testing so I can make my groups and begin the real rotations on Monday. I doubt I'll ever fully let go and let them pick rounds themselves because of how I need to balance the time I have, but they have choice within each round so that helps me feel a bit less guilty :)
I have four groups that my student teacher and I will be working with. One group is pretty big as it has all of my really low kiddos in it (8 kids) and the others are smaller with 5 or 6 kids. My bubble groups have six each. Those are the friends that I know if I push them, they will benchmark by the end of the year, or be very close to that benchmark. Then I have my high group. Each group will see the teacher three times per week in group. My low and bubble groups will see me three days in a row, my high group will see me three times still but are moved about to fill in the gaps from the other groups.
I have made this work for me of course...in ways I didn't even think about when I was planning to integrate D5 with reading street. I created my own category of "Notebook" as one of our choices. This is a time when the kids will be working in their interactive notebooks on the weekly vocabulary and strategy skills. For me, it is a great way to help them dig into our texts in a meaningful way that is also structured. They have enjoyed using the notebooks so far and I think that will continue as I gradually release them to doing more of that part on their own.
Each group will have Read to Self four times per week, Teacher Time three times per week, Word Work twice per week, Notebook twice per week and Read with Someone once per week. We shall see if it actually works out as nicely in real life as I have envisioned it will in my head as I've been building toward this for the last three weeks :)