Today's reflection is really more a question as I wonder about reader's notebooks.
- What would the reader's notebook look like?
- How would I use a reader's notebook?
- How would I manage reader's notebook?
- Are my first graders ready for a reader's notebook?
- Do we even need a reader's notebook?
Did you notice the elephant in the room? The notebook seems to be about me and for me! Our classroom is very much designed to be responsive to the needs of the learners. Our classroom is designed to give agency and build independence. So why am I making the notebook about my needs?
I recently had the pleasure to hear Ralph Fletcher speak at the Dublin Literacy Conference, he cautions teachers to not let notebooks become our work, but rather give permission to the students to use them as they choose.
So now I am looking at reader's notebooks from a different perspective, the perspective of the learners in our class.
- What do the readers need in a notebook?
- Would the readers feel a reader's notebook is purposeful?
- Are 1st grade readers ready to write in a notebook in a way that can be understood by others?
- Do others need to understand the thoughts in the notebook?
- Would the kids stop using our online tools to respond to reading?
Of course in considering the perspectives of the learners in our room I have to include myself. I am learning alongside the kids. I want the notebook to allow me to assess, design lessons and talk with readers.
- How can I use this notebooks as a means of ongoing assessment?
- How can the notebook be organized in a way that's easy to understand and to use and allow the reader the freedom to respond in a variety of ways?
Looking at my reading life, notes in margins, post-it-notes, and this blog I am thinking it has to be a reader's choice!
So, tomorrow the kids will decide!
Thanks for allowing me to think out loud! I would love to hear your thoughts on reader's notebooks, please comment below!