Friday, July 1, 2011

Daily 5 and CAFE

I started doing Daily 5 three years ago with my 4th and 5th graders. I'd  read the book, I was excited, and I really wanted it to work. We practiced using the chimes to get back to the carpet, and that went well.  We made our I-chart for read to self, practiced stamina, and that went well. We made our I-chart for read to someone, practiced with partners sitting EEKK, and that went well.
Now here's the big BUT . . . .
I couldn't make the rotations work because I simply could not justify interrupting readers who are in the ZONE (Yep, I read The Reading Zone too!) so they could do word work. I could pull groups and conference with individuals while my other students were reading because we'd worked on the D5 structure and practiced so my students could read independently very well.

Then I read The CAFE Book and thought: Wow! The Sisters really nailed it this time!
I got busy and made myself a pensieve with all the forms I thought I'd need to keep track of conferences and keep anecdotal records for each student.
Now, we'd surely have to have new book bags. With the diligent help of ladybug12, I finally found just the right ones for my student. You can see the red pencil pouch tucked inside the mesh zippered pockets of these cool bags!
I put up my CAFE board using my Stick Kid headers I found on TeachersPayTeachers! I was so proud of myself! I was ready for my students to come.
The Sisters always tell us to do what makes it work for us. After that year that's what I finally felt I had done. I could use elements of Daily 5 and CAFE and feel some measure of success.

This year my goal is to use the parts of Daily 5 that work for me such as the early training and the recordkeeping while I mesh CAFE and Treasures and The Comprehension Toolkit. Sounds like a pretty lofty goal, doesn't it. Well I'll chronicle my work - both success and challenges with the hope that you and I can work the kinks out together as we blog. Until later . . .

Monday, June 27, 2011


I probably shouldn't admit this, but I really don't know what I'm doing. I guess - since I'm a self-proclaimed life-long learner - I'd better hang in here long enough to learn about blogging. If you choose to follow my blog, I hope you begin to find some major changes and improvements.

Summer school ended last Friday, so today is the first real day of my summer vacation. I am planning to jump into the Book Whisperer discussion group that starts today on the Thinking of Teaching blog. I read the book last summer, but I started rereading it last week. I'm excited about discussing it with other teacher/learners.