Shared Reading

The Three Bears: A Free Song Poster

Who doesn't love the three bears! This song is always a lot of fun for my students and I to sing as we are doing our thematic study of The Three Bears. This song adds to student's comprehension, sequencing, and allows for students to further explore story elements such as characters.

To make this song into a chart size poster, simply copy this jpg into iphoto or whatever photo management system you use and then save it on a thumb-drive as a jpeg. Take this to your local photo store ( I really like Sam's Club for this) and make it into a poster. Or print as a poster using the print menu as a pdf. Be sure to laminate to make the colors more brilliant and for durability.  Enjoy!


You might also enjoy these great thematic curriculum products available here or at our TPT Store.

Or you can purchase directly here at our Squarespace Store.

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Building "Action" Sight Word Sentences

Are you like me, tired of hunting for "action" picture cards to build emergent sentences?

These action and sight word cards will enable you to build easy to read, pocket chart sentences, for your emerging readers! (Sight words follow the “Wonders” Reading Series).

Just copy, laminate, and cut. That's what I am about to do to get ready to build those "I can" sentences with my students tomorrow.

Common Core "Close Reading" in Kindergarten

I am finally one of those teachers, you know the ones that has been teaching so long that they have been there, done that, and roll their eyes knowing the new is simply a proven method back again with a different name.

My comment today is about the “Hype” of Close Reading that has been boosted by the Common Core Standards. It seems as it is being touted as a new idea. However, veteran (okay I mean old) teachers know that close reading is simply a new name for “Shared Reading.” You know the great shared readings that was promoted by Bobbie Fisher and other Whole Language (okay I know this is now a bad word) greats of the 1990s. These proponents of reading text closely, with purpose, using the “think aloud model” as the teacher “closely” looks at a book, brought books quickly to life for young readers.

So today as I taught my Common Core objectives for reading literature to children, I simply enjoyed a great Shared Reading lesson with my students.

We read the book “One Cold Wet Night” by Joy Cowley and June Melser (yes I have owned that book for almost two decades now and I have yet to see a child not love it). After closely taking a “picture walk” (or using todays term) looking for visual clues we read the story three times with different objectives at each reading.

Next we made a story map recording all of the elements in the story. Then, the students recorded the elements in their journal.

Yes, Ruth and Melba were right (the veterans of my early career). Good teaching is good teaching no matter the name.

Mrs. Wishy Washy

Will Mrs. Wishy Washy ever get old? Joy Cowely's timeless book! I have taught 20 years of kindergarten, 19 years of that were double sessions. Consequently, I have taught over One Thousand 5 year olds the joys of Mrs. Wishy Washy. If you have never used this book, go directly to amazon and do not pass go!

Our Farm unit has a couple of activities related to Mrs. Wishy Washy, you may want to check it out.

A Halloween Shared Reading Lesson

My Ghost

by Lyndsey Jarman

I needed a costume

on Halloween night.

A scary, new costume

that would be a fright.

I found an old tablecloth

all clean and white.

I cut out two eyes,

big, round, and just right!

I put my sheet on

I knew just what to do.

I found all my friends and shouted out


Critical Reading Lesson

Read through the poem once for enjoyment and then tell the children Today we are going to practice doing something that good readers can do. It is called visualizing. Visualizing means creating a picture of what is being read inside of your head. It is like turning on a TV inside of your brain that creates pictures of what your are reading.

We are going to read this poem again. The child in the poem is making a costume for Halloween. I want all of you to close your eyes this time as I read the story and turn on your brain TVs. As I read to you what the child is doing, I want you to imagine a picture of it in your brain. At the end of the poem, I want you to imagine what the child looks like in the costume he or she made.

Read the poem to the students once more. After reading, think aloud about some of the elements of the poem. This time while I was reading the poem I noticed some of the details about what the child was doing. I noticed that he or she started with a sheet out of which he or she cut two big eyes. I wonder what a sheet with two eyes cut out would look like? I wonder what the child in the story is going to be? I also am paying close attention to the fact that the child said, “boo” after he or she put the costume on. I think that is a big clue. Who made a picture in their mind of what this child looks like all dressed up for Halloween?


Ask a few children to draw a picture of the child in costume. Encourage the children to do their best, but emphasize that individual differences are great because everyone makes different pictures when they visualize. Do not draw a picture yourself because children may consider this the correct answer and attempt to copy it.

Now give each child a white piece of construction paper, art materials, and a kleenex. Instruct them to make a picture of a child on their paper. Next, using scissors, have the children cut kleenex to show how the child cut out the sheet, glue it on top of their drawing, and then write “boo” on the paper.

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