The post below originally appeared in full on Scholastic's Top Teaching blog.
Both good and struggling readers benefit from guided reading. Whole group instruction has its place in literacy programs, but there are great benefits to students who are given the opportunity to have differentiated, teacher-led instruction in a small group setting. During small group reading instruction, the teacher’s goal is to assist students in developing an understanding of what they are reading, but also to encourage students to apply reading strategies they will need to become independent readers.
Why is Guided Reading Important?
Guided reading gives us the opportunity to ensure more reading in school (with instructional support). Students should also read independently during the reading workshop and take books home to read. Amount of time spent matters, and guided reading provides the following:
- Daily experience reading a text at a level that supports accuracy and comprehension
- Experience with a wide variety of genres so that students can develop favorite types of texts
- Encouragement to read at their independent level as part of the reading workshop
- Opportunity to talk and write about texts
Guided reading also provides teachers the perfect opportunity to observe and offer guidance to their students as they read aloud in a small group setting. One of my favorite aspects of guided reading is that it gives me an opportunity to be close to my students, get to know them a little bit better and more than anything, share my love for reading. I cherish the moments I get with my students as we spend time reading together. In fact, I would have to say that guided reading is a favorite time of my day!
To learn more about getting started with guided reading in your class, visit Top Teaching!
Image via Scholastic