Needless to say, I've been a little preoccupied, and it's taken me FOREVER to finish my reading response menu packet. The good news is, I had plenty of time for field testing! We've been doing them for almost two nine-weeks, and the kids are crazy about them! I am even MORE crazy about how well it's going! So, here's the deal!
The Reader Response Menu: A Recipe for Reading Success packet is seriously one of my favorite resources ever. The 64 page packet (jam-packed with 41 different reading response menus and different templates for student responses) was created to address a variety of standards, higher-order thinking skills, and genres in an easily adaptable and predictable structure! What's more, with this set, you can assign a different menu every week for the entire school-year without running out or repeating the same menu twice! These reading response menus can be used as homework (like I do with my class), as morning work, as part of your independent reading centers, as part of your literature circle approach, or they can be integrated into your interactive journals by cutting and gluing them into your notebooks! They can be used with your main selections, literature circles, small groups, or independent reading. No matter what, they are a great tool for differentiation and providing students with GUIDED CHOICE as they interact with texts. It's been working like a charm! :) Since I LOVE it so much, and it wasn't finished in time for the site-wide sale, I'm putting it on sale for 20% off through tomorrow (Monday, December 16, 2013). I hope you will find them as useful as I do!
So, here are a few examples of what the Reading Response Menus look like. Most of them are mixed skills divided into the larger categories of fictional or informational texts... and they apply to a variety of genres. There are a few specifically skill based menus, and the rest are correlated to Bloom's. :)
Again, what do I love so much about this?! I love that I don't have to spend time racking my brain week after week about what my students will do for homework. I love that every response is meaningful. I love that I can assign independent reading for homework without requiring them to fill out a reading log. I love that this extends the thinking they have already done while they read for twenty minutes at home. I love that they can choose their own books at their own levels, and it will work for all of my kiddos. I love that I could assign different menus to different kids if I wanted to. I love that it give students a choice in how they are going to demonstrate their understanding of the text. I love that it works with picture books and chapter books. I love that the process is predictable, so it becomes familiar to my students, and only the skills change. I also love that, should I ever decide to go a different direction with homework, this resource isn't a wash. I could use it for morning work, and a whole year of MEANINGFUL morning work would be readily available. If I didn't want to do that, I love that I could use them in Read to Self or small groups. I just LOVE the flexibility I have with this product, and most of all, I love how it has simplified my approach to homework while simultaneously stretching my students and improving their written responses. For someone who believes in trying to work smarter, not necessarily harder, this is a breath of fresh air. Happy Sunday, friends!