With all the talk about workshops last week I started thinking about things I did in my reading workshop that I want to continue doing again next year. One of the first things that came to my mind is Status of the Class.
Status of the Class is just a quick, simply way to keep tabs on what everyone in your class is reading. I call out a student's name and he or she tells me the name of the book they are reading and what page number they are on.
Why do I love Status of the Class? I know what everyone is reading and how quickly they are moving through a particular book. I encourage my students to stick with the same book at home and at school, so if they haven't progressed through enough pages from one day to the next I know there isn't any reading going on at home.
I can't meet with everyone every day to discuss the books they've selected to read, so this also gives me some indication of who is reading a just right book and who needs to pick again. If I find that a student is really moving slowly through a text I'll jot a note to have a conference with him or her the next day and discuss whether the book is a good fit for them. I'm always surprised at how honest kids are in telling me they dont like a book, yet they were continuing to read it!
My kids are always excited to tell me what page number they are on. In the beginning of the year Status of the Class is a huge motivator to get kids excited and talking about reading! I've had kids stop me out in the hallway before to tell me they were on page 65!
The tough part for me is staying on track with this! Even thought it is only a few minutes each day it is so easy to get caught up in something else and forget it! We've had crazy weeks (and even months) where it seems like every class period is shortened for some reason and Status of the Class gets pushed to the side.
One of my goals this year is to make Status of the Class an even more consistent part of our daily routine.
Have you tried Status of the Class?