Middle School
English Language Arts

Setting up Independent Reading in the Middle School Classroom

Just like becoming an expert at anything takes practice, to become a good reader, a child needs to read A LOT. Especially our students whom have already fallen behind due to reading ability, they need practice time, while we're there to support them. But getting kids to actually read doesn't just happen, especially for those who think they're terrible at it! These resources can help you set up successful independent reading systems in your classroom that can transform reading ability.
A Collection By Rosy Reed
  • 8 Collection Items
  • 8 Collection Items
  • Discussion
Setting up Independent Reading in the Middle School Classroom
  • Launching Lifelong Readers

    Website
    reading-without-limits.com
    reading-without-limits.com
    Rosy Reed says:
    Maddie Witter, a seasoned KIPP educator and literacy coach shares incredible online tools for setting up independent reading in your classroom including a running record podcast and a Fry graph for estimating readability of a text.
  • Rosy Reed says:
    In her book (published here in its entirety online!), Calkins lays out all of the basics of conducting a readers workshop in Grades 3-5. This is a great read if you are thinking about adopting or helping your school adopt a model that allows students to read independently and builds their compehension and fluency
  • Fountas & Pinnell Leveled Book Website

    Webtool
    fountasandpinnellleveledbooks.com
    fountasandpinnellleveledbooks.com
    Rosy Reed says:
    This site also allows you to enter book titles and identify their levels according to Fountas and Pinnell (reading experts!). It does require a subscription - this site allows you to demo what the subscription will provide.
  • Rosy Reed says:
    Led by Lucy Calkins (another readers workshop guru!), Teachers College has created FREE reading mini-units of study (that utilize the readers workshop model) and a great series of videos to introduce how to use them! The videos give a fast-paced overview of the sequence of units for your grade level, answers to common questions, and the logistics of how to get started with the first unit.
  • Rosy Reed says:
    This site allows you to enter any book title and get a lexile number, which is a degree of reading difficulty. This can allow you to level your classroom library (you can create colors or letters that match up with each lexile range) so that students can browse the library and select a book that they're interested in, that is also on their reading level.
  • Rosy Reed says:
    Assessing reading comprehension and "time on task" can be difficult since so much of reading happens in a student's head.These simple guides help students stay focused during independent reading, enable them to practice key strategies taught, and make it easier for teachers to assess the progress they're making. The same template is usable for every student regardless of what book they are reading and what level it is on. You can also have the students use post-its and reuse these sheets.
  • Rosy Reed says:
    The only way for students, especially those who have already fallen behind, to get better at reading is to spend a lot of time reading. This book is a must read for any teacher who wants to set up independent reading in the classroom in a way that really works. Fauntus and Pinnell guide you through how to set up the resources and structures to get kids reading in a meaningful way. They provide so many useful templates and how-tos.
  • Rosy Reed says:
    In this five minute video clip, Cris Tovani, author of I Read It, But I don't Get It, shares WHY students need to spend actual time reading during class time in order to get better at reading. This is a motivating clip to come back to as you try to get independent reading set up for your students. It also provides a well-articulated rationale for the model to share with school leadership, parents and even students.
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