Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Word Work....Daily 5 Chapter 6

Word work....I love it! It has always been one of my favorite parts of planning my traditional literacy centers! At times I have to admit it has been the majority of my literacy centers!

Ooops.....I need a little balance I suppose!

So as I'm reading The Daily 5 (and the school year is inching closer and closer)  I'm really beginning to think about the logistics of planning my Daily 5 choices.

For the beginning of the year I'm planning on having many alphabet activities as part of my word work choices.  Although I plan on keeping some of these choices available ALL year it is imperative at the beginning to have a solid foundation with their alphabet skills and then begin to work on building words.

Does anyone else agree????

Our district does have a basal series that introduces the alphabet quickly during the first three weeks of school. We then slow down and focus on individual letters and sight words. From this point on usually one to two new words are introduced each week for two weeks. After two weeks there is time to review and then we begin again.  These first few weeks gives me a chance to put out many of my alphabet activities and assess just where my kiddos are at.
This is one of my favorite alphabet charts to do with my kids. I use it with the Dr. Jean song that incorporates actions for each lower case letter. This is introduced whole group and then the following extension activity is a word work choice.  Lower case magnetic letters can be sorted or they can also write the letters on the form.  I've also made the same chart with tape on a white board and the kids sorted the letter magnets on the white board and recorded them on the sheet.

I also LOVE to focus on their names as part of our word work at the beginning of the school year! I have a pocket chart that includes just the students' names.

At the beginning of the year I use just their first names. For word work choices there are so many possibilities when using names!  I usually have cards with their names written on them in tubs near the tree.  I like to have them circle our focus letters they can find in their name, write a list of names that has five letters each, cut apart their name into a puzzle and they have to put it together...the list goes on and on.  As the year continues I add last names to the tree. Here's a fun name activity for matching first and last names. Again, I would keep these in a tub near the tree and the kids practice matching the class names.

As I begin to introduce our popcorn words I start to add them to our word wall. I always introduce our new words during whole group but then REVIEW, REVISIT AND REVIEW again and again during small groups.
I'm revamping word wall for next school year but this system has really been working for me. I just need to make it a little more organized and not so busy! =)  

I have the word wall located near tables where the students can choose to work on their word work activities. I love to let them use stamps, wikki sticks, paint....just about anything that they can create our words with!

Since I've been drifting back and forth these past two years between Daily 5 and traditional literacy centers I have really given some thought to where to store my materials. When I am implementing traditional literacy centers I have an ABC Center, a Name Center and a Word Work Center.  They are all located near one another and the kids would rotate through these. For Daily 5 I plan to keep my materials stored the way that I currently have them. I have my file folders, game boards and various manipulatives sorted on shelves into these categories.  During Daily 5 I plan to have approximately six alphabet/name/word work activities available at the designated work tables for the  kids to chose from. I may have to adjust this as the year progresses of course but this is the plan for now.   

Head on over to see what questions Tammy from  Kreative in Kinder has posted us to reflect on while reading this chapter!  I have loved reading what everyone has posted about during this book study and I can't wait to see more!                Mrs. M                   


  1. Hello, I have nominated you for the Liebster award. Congrats. Please visit my blog to find out more.


    Liz :)

  2. I love Dr. Jean and using her music in my classroom too!

  3. Thanks so much for the ideas about using students' names. You have given me a lot to consider/add to my WW time. Have a great rest of the summer!

    1. Glad that you can use some of the ideas...I love using their names as "word work." =)

  4. I love the idea of having the kids sort letters in tall, short and tail. I am going to have to remember that.


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