I really enjoyed watching these videos! It was really great to watch the different strategies teachers use in teaching reading concepts. It gave me some new ideas and I am looking forward to using them. Personally I really enjoyed the videos that showed collaborative learning between the teacher and students. So here goes my thoughts…

Rick’s Reading Workshop                                                                                                                               I really liked how he stopped periodically throughout the book and asked the children their thoughts. I believe this keeps them engaged in the story, helps them to think about what’s happening and to be able to process their thoughts. One of the best parts of the video was he stopped reading and asked the children to talk to their group about what they thought the surprise was going to be. This keeps them engaged, helps the children who are having difficulty understanding the story, and gives them a chance to dive into the story and dissect it.  For me, so many times, I have seen reading circles be just the teacher talking and more of a lecture style/teacher directed activity. Yet by allowing the children to stop and talk among themselves and have group dialogue it makes it more meaningful for them and they will get more out of the story. This also boosts their comprehension level will increase by breaking down the story and talking about the different parts. In this video Rick doesn’t teach them about the story, but facilitates an environment where the children are learning themselves. He guides the conversation but allows them to make their own discoveries.This was one of my favorite videos. Here is the video

First Grade Readers                                                                                                                                           As compared  to Rick’s Reading Workshop, this teaching was really more teacher led. She asked questions, but didn’t get input from everyone in the class. It could be that some of the students didn’t understand the concepts at all, but she would not have known that. At one point she gives them time to talk with their neighbor, but it is only seconds. I am not sure if she did this because it is an instructional video and she didn’t want to waste the time or if she really doesn’t allow much group time. On a positive note, I really like how she broke down the concept of informational vs fictional books. She broke it down to their level. I think her way of having the students “buy in” to the idea of understanding the deeper level of the story (inferring),  was good when she told them they were great readers. Overall I think she did a good job and it was age appropriate but I think she went a little fast.  You can watch the video here

Poetry Mini Lesson                                                                                                                                           I like how she started out the lesson by explaining to the students what they will be learning. This gives them something to focus on and they can understand the goal. She had the students talk to each other and discuss the terms and their meanings. She then confirmed their understanding by going over it as a whole group. I feel this is important and ensures that everyone understands the concept. I think she had the right balance of teacher led and student involvement. At the end when she talked about figurative speech, she broke it down and asked them if they ever felt this way. I believe the strategies she used in this lesson ensures that everyone is a part of the learning process. She does a “check in” with the students to make sure everyone understands. I really liked this video. It was one of my favorites!   You can watch the video here

Readers Workshop                                                                                                                                   This lesson was more teacher directed. She explained the purpose for re-reading books and then explained what she wanted them to do so the directions were clear. I like how the children had the freedom to choose their own book and then talk about their book in a group activity.  Compared to the other videos, this lesson was very teacher directed and instructed. It did not demonstrate collaborative learning. I understand this video was based on teaching a concept but she could have used different strategies to allow the children to be a part of the learning process. To me, she seemed more concerned on how they were sitting and saying “thank you.”  That was not the purpose of the lesson.                  Here is the video

Kindergarten Writer’s Workshop                                                                                                                 I found this video to be conflicting. I think the teacher had all the right ideas but needed some tweeks in her presentation of how to teach this method. I liked the fact that she talked with the children about being silly and when they could remember a time when they were silly-very appropriate theme for the children to be able to relate to. I really liked how she used a flip chart pad to demonstrate what she wanted them to do. This is a great great strategy, especially for visual learners. The things I felt were amiss or went wrong in this video were that some of the children were not able to see the flip chart based on where they were sitting, the lesson was too long for this age group, and she took too long talking about what her and Mallory were doing. I think it would have been better if she choose a child from the group and did the demonstration based on their experience. I think the children would have stayed interested longer because they may have experienced the same thing and they can relate. Also shorten the experience. Children this age do not have the attention span to stay interested. She wasn’t aware of her audience/students.I don’t want to put her down because I think she had the right ideas, but it just needed some tweeking.  Here is the video

What did you guys think? Which ones were your favorites??