Tuesday, September 11, 2018


The morning message is a powerful way to demonstrate the importance of reading and writing. When a class mascot (stuffed animal or puppet) has a message waiting for the children it will give them something to anticipate each day.

Here's a song to the tune of “My Darlin Clementine” to focus children’s attention for the 
morning meeting:
         We are readers.
         We are writers.
         And we like to learn it’s true.
         We will read the morning message
         So we’ll know just what to do.

Hocus – Pocus – Focus
Did you know that if you tell your brain that something is important it’s more likely to remember it? If you have your children put on their focus goggles before you call their attention to something on the morning message it just might work. Say, “Hocus, pocus, goggles, focus!” as you demonstrate making circles with your thumbs and index fingers and placing them around your eyes.

To the Point
You probably already have some pointers, but it’s easy to make seasonal ones by placing finger puppets on the end of a cardboard pants roller.

Cut out the center of a butterfly net and add some fancy ribbon and you’ll be able to frame letters, words, and other key details.

Correct the Teacher
As the year goes along you can make spelling and punctuation errors so the children can “correct” you.


Each week write a poem on a chart and introduce it on Monday. Read over the rhyme using different strategies suggested below. Review the rhyme each day and then on Friday read and review rhymes from previous weeks.

Try choral reading with these strategies:

Shadow Reading– Teacher reads a line and then students repeat.

Magic Word– Choose a “magic word” (high frequency word) in the text. Every time you come to that word, the children get to clap, jump, snap, etc.

Say What?Read the wrong way and have children correct you by shouting out, “Say what?”

Missing Word – Omit a word and have the children fill it in.

Read with me IF you…like chocolate ice cream
      like broccoli         have a dog
      can ride a bike     are wearing red

Stand and Read – Children stand and take a small step to the right for each word. At end of the line jump “down” to the next line. Everyone moves back to the left and quickly moves to the right with every word until the end of the next line. Repeat until the end of the poem.

Take a Turn
- Divide children into groups and each section reads a different line. For example: Let boys and girls alternate reading lines.

Got Cha!– Whenever the teacher yells, “Got Cha!,” the students must pick up reading.

Voice Box– Go to my website and download “fluency cards.” Place these in a small box and let students choose a voice and then lead classmates in reading the rhyme.