The goal of guided reading is to teach young readers to use reading strategies independently to become fluent and skilled readers. There are many important components to an effective guided reading lesson. Above all, setting up objectives for guided reading groups is key to teaching the necessary reading strategies. These are 3 easy steps to set up student-friendly objectives for small group instruction.
1. I have my data.. now what?
First, I assess my students reading levels using running records. The data from the running records, shows me the errors that students made using the cuing systems. I use this information as a start to identify areas of instruction.
The 3 cuing systems tell me:
Meaning errors- Students need to develop skills that help them understand if what they are reading makes sense.
Structure errors- Students need to develop skills that helps them decide whether or not the text sounds right.
Visual errors- Students need to develop skills that help them identify unknown words with automaticity.
2. Identify instructional objectives
After that, I analyze the data. I use the data to group students based on their reading level and the error analysis. The data tells me what reading strategies students need to develop. These can fall under: reading comprehension, reading accuracy, reading fluency, and/or vocabulary.
Subsequently, I select one of the I can statement that aligns with the instructional focus for each group. Usually, I select one of the I-Can statements from the accuracy list for my emergent and early readers. A statement from the fluency or comprehension list for my transitional readers. And a statement from the vocabulary or comprehension lists for my fluent readers. Of course, this all depends on the needs of my students.
3. Select a just-right book
Then, I look for a leveled book that provides plenty of opportunities for students to practice the objective (reading strategy/skill). I have a clear objective that I will teach my students, which makes selecting the right book easier.
Finally, I introduce the book to my students. I point to the I-Can statement chart to introduce and model the skill/strategy. I place a sticky note next to the I-Can statement. This is a reminder for my students that they should use this skill/strategy when it’s their turn to read.