Literacy Stations: Part 2

Hi, guys!  I hope everyone had a fabulous week and were able to rest this weekend.  I just wrapped up the first six weeks.  Time has gone by fast.  Next week, I will release the reins for students to complete stations independently.  I look forward to spending time listening to my students read in a small group.

I want to share with you how I use each station.  My goal is you will find at least one tip to use in your classroom.

Station 1: Read to Self

Read to self is the first station I introduce to students.  We practice, practice, practice.  During read to self, they may not talk, get up or play.  If they break any of the expectations, we try again.  It takes time, but it is worth it in the end.

How do students store their reading books?
Each student has their own book box.

How many books do they keep in their box?
Students keep five books in their box.

How often do students trade out their books?
They trade out books once a week.

How do students choose their books?
Students choose their books from our book bins.

Station 2: Work with Words

Working with words gives students an opportunity to practice their new learning .  I introduce the phonics skill of the week on Monday.

How do you decide what skill to practice? 
I follow our scope and sequence for the district. The first few weeks, we worked on CVC words, word families and rhyming.

How often does this center change?
The words for the week change on Monday.  At this time, they are given four different options to practice their words.  We will gradually increase to more options.  

Station 3: Listen to Reading

This station is initially practiced, as a whole group. Students have a hard time figuring out where to press start and how to turn on the cd player. My, how technology has advanced.

What do you use in this station?
I have three CD players for students to use with headphones.  

What do students do after they listen to the story?
I have them complete a reflection page.  They write the title, draw a picture of their favorite part and write one sentence.  Later in the year, they will write the beginning, middle, and end of the story.

Station 4: Work on Writing

The options are endless for this station.  Sometimes it is something as simple as labeling a picture. There are also students who are able to write stories.

What do you place in your writing station?
I have used many things.  There have been years where it was as simple as a journal with blank handwriting pages. I have also used monthly journals.

The past two years I have given my students more options.  This has helped them to stay engaged during their time at this station. Some of the types of writings include making a list, writing a letter, and stories.

Station 5:  Read and Write the Room

I love this station!  It is easy to prepare and gets the kids up and moving.  The cards are in different places around the classroom.

How often do you change the cards? 
Normally, I only change task cards out once a week.  The exception would be if we were able to visit more stations than normal in a given week.  I like to have them changed out on Friday before I leave for the weekend.

Do you grade the response sheets?
I do not place a grade on their answer key, but I do like looking at their responses.  It is eye-opening to see what sounds they hear.

6: Rock Your Fluency

This is a fun, engaging station.  You know a station is a keeper when they get excited that it is their turn and bummed when it is time to clean up.

What do you place in this station?
In this station, I have a timer, leveled fluency phrases, and voice cards.  If you do not have fluency phrases you could use leveled passages or even a book on their reading level.

How is the game played?
Students' play the game in pairs.  They take turns reading the phrases. Their goal is to see if they can beat how many phrases they read the time before.  They love the competition.

7: Smartboard

Initially, I was apprehensive to allow students to use the smartboard during literacy stations. My concern was that other students would be distracted.  Thankfully, they have done very well.  It has been a great way to practice new skills.

Where do you find your activities?
Smart Exchange has great activities for all subject areas.  They have a great selection of free downloads for all subject areas.

8.  Ipads

Thankfully we have four Ipads to use in our classroom.  It makes it easy to use in a station.

Do the students get to choose what app they play?
No, they do not.

What apps do students play?
At this time they are using the math app Matific.  Another app that I use often is Istation.  They both allow students to work on their level.

9.  Buddy Reading

Buddy reading use to be the last station I taught.  I felt like it was hard for students to read and not play with their buddy.

I would love to share a little secret with you.  I use stuffed animals to teach students how to read with a buddy.  This has been the perfect way to introduce how to read with a buddy to my students.

10. Computers

We only have one student computer in our classroom.  Most of the time I save this station for my ESL/ELL students who need time using the Imagine Learning software. 

Thanks for stopping by.