As promised, here is another example of my whole class reading planning for Year 2 using DERIC.
This is my second consecutive year in Year 2, however, at the beginning of the year I had a large number of children who were just not ‘year 2 ready’. This meant that I had to dramatically rethink my planning for reading compared to the year before. The children needed to develop their reading fluency and confidence, especially when reading at length. Not to mention their love of reading! So I started the year with picture books with an aim to engage and inspire a love of reading initially.
The first text I decided to use was ‘Winnie’s Big Bad Robot’ by Valerie Thomas. I chose this text as it wasn’t an overly familiar text for my class and it had lots of humour in the story which I thought would engage the boys in my class. The boys in particular found reading a challenge, I wanted to make it a little more enjoyable.
I felt like this text had just the right amount of writing on a page that the children could still practise their reading and build their fluency but without being put off! The text is mostly phonetically plausible and accessible to their reading skill level but still had vocabulary that would challenge them and that we would be able to explore. It also gave us a funny story that we could share and talk about and begin to develop other skills through.
When I plan for Year 2, I always have in the back of my mind that part of my teaching needs to be about exposing the children to different types of questions and different ways of answering questions, so you will see that I try and add variation from question to question. I find that this has really helped children to access SATs at the end of the year as well as termly assessments but more importantly, it kept them engaged and interested.
So lets have a look at the planning.
As I said earlier, one of the main reasons I chose this text was because it was accessible for my children. We always start our lessons with some kind of ‘decoding’ exercise or reading practise. This could be as simple as model reading, shared reading, independent reading, peer reading or teacher led reading. But I also liked to provide activities in which I know that all children would have to ‘have a go themselves’ and get involved.
I always photocopy the pages we are exploring (in colour) for children to explore as well. I know colour is probably controversial, even photocopying these days, however, this is what engages my class, keeps their interest. If I gave it to them in black and white, they would not be interested! It is also important for them to have a copy of the text that they can write on or highlight as I will explain in more detail later.
Here are some decode examples;
Simply reading from the text or…
Reading for a purpose. The last two activities require children to read the text, understand what they have read and draw the picture. My class struggled with writing at the beginning of the year, they found it hard, however, drawing they enjoyed. It also helped me to assess their understanding in their reading, as a whole class at one time. I didn’t need to hear them all read individually, I could just listen and observe and ask them about their picture.
Obviously, if you do do these kinds of activities, they shouldn’t have seen or heard the text before. If your children struggle with drawing, maybe you are Year 1 or EYFS, you could provide them with a selection of pictures to choose from, even get them to cut them out to develop those fine motor skills.
There are many opportunities in the text for exploring the language used and helping the children build their vocabulary. If you look on tes or twinkl, or even just google word building activities you will find loads of examples, like this one which the children love!
But before you can use this, you might want to teach each section and focus on building it up that way. For example, here are some of the activities I have done.
This activity can be really practical initially, but you can also explore synonyms at the same time, just through discussion. It is also a good way to talk about verbs and you could throw in questions related to authors choice of language.
I use these kinds of activities to get the children to start thinking about up levelling the vocabulary they know as well as well as improving thesaurus skills. A large vocabulary is so important. There is some really interesting research and information relating to this on The Literacy Trust website.
Together with the standard questions where children write their answer on a line, which are most commonly used in reading lessons, I also try to take away the barrier of having to write an answer down. Here are a few example;
I always encourage the children to use their highlighters (which they love!) to highlight the answers in the text first, I found that this helps them keep track of their reading and their answers, especially if they are required to copy an answer from the text.
I hope you have found these ideas helpful. If you would like a copy of this planning, you can find it on my tes account for free. Should you have any questions or feedback, I would love to hear it. I will also share more examples soon.
Thank you for reading.