Skip to main content

Whisper: Reading Notebooks

Well, the more I read The Book Whisperer the more I know in my heart that reading should be more of a focus for us this year! Homeschooling has brought back out the inner reader in me. And I want my kids to have the passion for reading that I have.

I had planned to make writing an emphasis this year, especially for Dawson, and purchased the IEW (Institute of Excellence in Writing) U.S. History Supplement. It. is. intense. Or at least it is in addition to the extremely full American History curriculum I have put together. I was already worried about Dawson's ability to keep up with it.

After I read Chapter 4 of The Book Whisperer, and Donalyn Miller's discussion about the Reading Notebook and reading requirements, I was feeling stressed about how to add in these great reading items into our already tight schedule.

So I really spent some time thinking about what I thought was important for the kids this year, primarily Dawson. And I just felt that reading is that important to make it the greatest priority. Writing could come from reading, especially with the Reading Notebook and the Response Entries.

So, this is what I decided to do. And I feel really good about it.

We will still do the IEW lessons. But instead of doing about one every day or two (which was really going to be impossible anyway!), Dawson will be assigned one IEW writing assignment each Monday to be completed by Friday. The downside is that we won't be doing the writing lessons that go with the current era we are studying, but at least we will have already studied the appropriate era when we get to that writing lesson.

And in exchange, we will go full throttle on reading and will diligently work in the Reading Notebook. Each Friday Dawson will write me a Response Entry about what he is currently reading and I will write him a response over the weekend to receive back on Monday.

I revised the Genre Requirements down to 20, instead of 40 for Dawson (Brynne's will still be 40, however, I know she will read more than that in a year). I prepared the Reading Notebook the same way suggested by Ms. Miller in Chapter 4, but instead of using composition notebooks I used three-ringed binders and tabbed dividers. Brynne will not do a notebook yet. She will, instead, do a lot of narration. Once she gets to a point where she is reading chapter books, we will start using Notebooks.

I know that this will be an adjustment for Dawson. But perhaps the trade off of not having to be so stressed about completing the IEW assignments will make it easier.

I am just feeling so inspired! Anyone else reading the book feeling the same?





Comments

  1. Good plan. You might also have Brynne "Sketch to Stretch" sometimes, too. She can do this along with narration. My students love Sketch to Stretch!

    Jennifer
    http://3rdgradelearners.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  2. I've really liked your posts about the Book Whisperer. I've been struggling with what to do about reading this year, for both my kids. Now I have a copy of this book on order, and I think I'll plan our reading around it!

    ReplyDelete
  3. can you please tell me more about the reading notebook and its contents? i'm very interested!

    thanks.

    kate n.
    pknowak99@gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  4. This looks great. I think I'm going to have to look in the Book Whisperer!

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

We all know that in this crazy world of homeschooling, we need all the (adult) support we can get. Please leave a comment if you so wish!

Popular posts from this blog

Cells ~ It's What's for Dinner

Dawson made edible cells on Friday.


He made an animal cell pizza ...


and a plant cell chocolate chip cookie ...


He reviewed what he's learned about cells the past two weeks, and I had dinner made by someone else. Win, win!!

I am linking up at Science Sunday at Adventures in Mommydom.

Ketogenic + Restless Legs = Insomnia ... Um, No!

Okay, I have been eating ketogenic for five days now. I have gotten through the carb detox headaches and have settled into a macro plan of 5% carbs (no grains), 20% protein, 75% fat.

The upside is that I like the idea of limiting my body of all of the glucose which will help my minor health conditions.

But there are definitely downsides!

The first is that I am having a hard time getting in enough fats under the strictures of the diet. Who knew it would be hard to eat fats? The real problem is that the fats I want to eat then include a consumption of protein and/or carbs and then throws off my percentages. Still working on that one.

The bigger issue is that for the past couple of nights I have had trouble sleeping, and I have had restless legs.

Sleeping is one of those things that I do well. I go to bed at the same time every night (for the most part) and get up at the same time each morning. I can fit in a 15-30 minute power nap in the afternoon and have no trouble going to sleep at n…

America: The Story of Us ~ Episode 3: "Westward 1" Lesson Plans

This past summer, when I planned our lessons for this year, I was enthralled with how much information was in Episode 3 ~ Westward. It couldn't be done in just three weeks, as I had intended for each unit. So, I broke Westward up into two separate units: Westward 1 and Westward 2. This week I will provide the lesson plans for Westward 1. We spent three weeks on this part of the unit.

We readThe Captain's Dog by Roland Smith. We read an equal number of pages each day to cover the three-week unit (Suprisingly, Dawson did not enjoy this book as much as I thought he would. With him being such a dog-lover, I thought he would appreciate it more. But it just didn't have enough action for him. You'll find that he's hard to please when it comes to literature. I actually really enjoyed The Captain's Dog and thought it was a great piece of historical fiction.)


We watched the entire Episode 3, did the discussion questions/video quiz for the episode and the vocabulary words…