guided reading – guided setup

Keeping your guided reading materials, lessons, observations, running records and such can be overwhelming for new teachers and more experienced teachers alike! My school, my first year of teaching was binder happy (I’m sure some of you can relate!) and so naturally I worked on a system to keep all of my materials in a binder.

Looking back, I am super thankful for the binder-mindset, because it makes for a breeze to flip to my lessons, reading logs, running records, etc. It also makes for an uncluttered table, which I love! I’ve revamped it as I’ve learned how to simplify. Here are a few guided steps to how I set mine up.

guided reading - guided setup :: KindergartenWorks

  • Insert front cover into binder and spine. Get yours paid chevron version which is super cute or this  by clicking the picture download free version that is fun too.
  • Place velcro onto the binder’s inside front and back covers for a calculator (place it so you can still access it when pages are open) and for a pen and highlighter (I’m right handed- so I keep mine on the right.)
guided reading - guided setup :: KindergartenWorks

I keep a file on my computer in a quickly accessible plate for weekly updating. These are my daily lesson plans*/observation pages. I am able to change the grouping and dates to plan for the next week. I don’t plan farther than that in advance since they grow and change so much in the strategies they try! I bind all old plans together using a binder clip so I can turn to today’s lesson plans quickly.

guided reading - guided setup :: KindergartenWorks

It’s a place for me to write the title each group will be working on and a place for me to do multiple things: highlight kinders I want to do a running record on; make anecdotal notes of what they did during their reading; place for me to write what we focused on, had difficulty with, need to work on next time. I use a lot of my own version of shorthand/running record type of marks to jot quickly.

guided reading - guided setup :: KindergartenWorks

Last year, I found myself not remembering the good, specific things I see my kinders who are engaged at their literacy centers doing that I like to edify in my weekly newsletter to parents. So I added a section at the bottom for me to mark down 1-2 positive things I notice and a place to make other notes. This is my way of giving myself a place to jot things completely unrelated that I want to remember later.

guided reading - guided setup :: KindergartenWorks
  • Insert a writable tab divider (great invention!) for each student. Label with names. These are super friendly for moving around when re-organizing your flexible groups and you can re-use next year. Just erase!
guided reading - guided setup :: KindergartenWorks
  • Hole punch an individual reading log for each student on the right side of the paper. (Shows reading growth at a glance, last time you took a RR, what books they’ve already read, etc.) Great for documentation!
  • On each child’s tab use double-sided tape to stick their indiv. reading log. So when you turn to their tab, it automatically takes you to both their log (to fill out each day as you read with that group) and their RR pages in one flip. Add student name to the top.
  • Hole punch two running record sheets (copied double-sided) for each child. This way you are set with eight blank running records records to use at the drop of a hat!
guided reading - guided setup :: KindergartenWorks

This is how each child’s section looks when I flip their tab open (minus the cool handwriting).

guided reading - guided setup :: KindergartenWorks

Now I can set up my binder for the upcoming school year at the end of every year by just making enough copies and it’s refreshing to find it practically ready to go once my kinders have their foundational concepts in place. All I have to add is their names!

guided reading - guided setup :: KindergartenWorks

More Guided Reading

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What tips do you have for setting up your guided reading space?
If you like what I do here on KindergartenWorks, then be sure to subscribe today. I look forward to sharing ideas with you weekly.
– Leslie 

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About Leslie atKindergartenWorks

Leslie is the author of KindergartenWorks. She teaches kindergarten students how to be pretty incredible along with teaching them to read, write and think for themselves. She enjoys graphic design, learning new things and sharing with teachers. Google+

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/13167651941970841661 Gina

    wow! So inspiring! I will start this soon b/c it will force me to be more honest with my record keeping.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05583762206365423880 Plants seeds of knowledge…for our future!

    Thanks for sharing! I am always on the lookout for things that help me make my life easier!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/04444720045458903405 KindergartenWorks

    Gina and Plant Seeds, Thanks for taking the time to comment!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/04444720045458903405 KindergartenWorks

    I’m not sure how I deleted your comment Emily when they sent me an e-mail- but I’m sorry! Here it is…
    “Great organization, I love this! I’ve been trying to find a good (organized) way to take observational notes during my guided reading and I love your ideas :)

    p.s. I found you through the link party!”

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/04444720045458903405 KindergartenWorks

    According to Ashley said, “Very nice — I do something very similar. Each group has a binder (Grapes have a purple binder; Blueberries have a blue binder, etc). In the front of each binder, I have very basic plans for each session (date, any word work, title/level of book, what we will do that day – whether it’s activating prior knowledge, making predictions, doing a picture walk OR actually reading and retelling the story). I also have some assessment data in the front so I can see what most of the students in that group need to work on. Then each child has a tab. Behind their tab, I have a sheet where I write the data, the book read, and any observations. It works very well — I have 23 students and a not-so-great memory!”

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/01403749523627389157 Erica Bohrer

    Thanks for sharing! I am going to send your link to my class.

    Erica Bohrer’s First Grade

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12341425157516012570 Kristin Young

    I just added “Create individual guided reading logs” on my never ending To-Do List. Thanks for sharing and giving me some great ideas! :)

    http://LittleMissGlamourGoesToKindergarten.blogspot.com

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/04568377943100374198 Leslie @KindergartenWorks

    I just added “Create individual guided reading logs” on my never ending To-Do List. Thanks for sharing and giving me some great ideas! :)

    http://LittleMissGlamourGoesToKindergarten.blogspot.com

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/04568377943100374198 Leslie @KindergartenWorks

    Thanks for sharing! I am always on the lookout for things that help me make my life easier!

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  • Michlea

    Where do you put notes from the groups session? I can’t decide

    • http://www.kindergartenworks.com Leslie @KindergartenWorks

      Normally, I jot notes by each student’s name so that I can record specifics about their progress or lack thereof. See the fourth picture in this post. Hope that helps!
      – Leslie

      • Michlea

        Thanks for replying so quickly. I am unsure if i shld put in behind a tab that for that group’s records or under the individual student’s names…I see there are multiple names on one sheet. what dividers to you have I your binder ??i cld only think of lessons and running records and I bought numbered dividers for each students running record

        • http://www.kindergartenworks.com Leslie @KindergartenWorks

          I usually only keep running records behind the child’s tab since I don’t like flipping tabs during a group lesson all that much. I just write the notes in the whole group’s tab and then behind that groups tab I keep all of the kids in that group – their tabs.

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