Disclaimer... and credit where credit is due!

This blog is simply my thoughts, ideas, and suggestions related to the Daily Five and Cafe. I give full credit to the creators of both Daily 5 and Cafe, Gail Boushey and Joan Moser, also known as The Sisters. I have attended their workshops, read their books, and subscribe to their website. Everything else, I've interpreted on my own! :)

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Shopping for books!

So, at a quick glance, it may look like chaos! And I'll be honest... sometimes, it feels like chaos. But if you really tune in and take time to observe, you will see what is really happening.

Every Friday for roughly 30 minutes (one Daily Five session,) we all take the time to revisit our book tubs and shop for new books. When we finish shopping, we find a spot around the room to really dive into the books we've chosen to be sure they are a good fit. If they aren't, we can go ahead and put them back before we choose a different book. By the time the 30 minutes is over, we are all around the room, reading to ourselves.

I've toyed with the idea of changing the way we shop. Should I have small groups shop first thing in the morning? Should I have them shop at the end of the day, while we're packing up? Could we shop every other week? I have heard many teachers talking about different ways of handling how kids exchange books for their book tubs lately, so I've really thought about why I do it the way that I do. I also talked to my friend Trish and others on our Daily Five Twitter chat. And here's what I came up with...

What's really happening during this organized chaos is conversation. It's collaboration. It's thinking about who we are as readers. It's time to recommend books to our friends. It's time for me (the lead reader) to suggest books to my growing readers. If we didn't shop all together, I'm afraid we'd lose this time for these kinds of real connections. I'd miss watching books go from hand to hand, reader to reader.

And why the need for a weekly shopping time? By shopping each week, it keeps my readers motivated and keeps their reading stamina high. As a reader, I know I am always tuning in to new things to keep my interest peaked. I have to expect that same feeling from my little readers. They always have the option to keep books they're still reading or books they want to spend more time with. But I encourage them to switch out the majority of books, especially those they've read several times. Sometimes longer books or chapter books stay in tubs for a couple of weeks... and that's ok.

Shopping is a valued time and valued activity. It is the way in which I help guide and teach my first graders to pick those good fit books that are going to move them along in their reading journey. So, with two days of school left... this is what is on my mind! I know it will be a sad, sad time when I tell the boys and girls they have to reshelve all of the books from their book tubs. But I'll remind them they are always welcome to come back if they need some good books to read!




16 comments:

  1. I have 9 days left, and I am already thinking bout next year. Partially because I am moving back up to 3rd from 1st...I AM OK with the change...just getting my mind ready. Lol
    I LOVE the idea of Friday shopping. I really have struggled with this part of daily 5 this year:( I can't wait to try it next year! THANKS!!!!

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    1. You are welcome! Best of luck in 3rd grade! I'd love to hear more about how you use Daily Five with your third graders.

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  2. You have me thinking..... Thanks.

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  3. Hi Laura! In January, with my Kinders, I suggest that they may want to trade books before they put them back and shop for more. They sit side by side, talk and trade. It's fun to watch.

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  4. As a spur of the moment idea, I had my students make a pile of all of the books they were done with in their book boxes, right before snack time. As they ate, I "auctioned" off books to the next interested reader. Being towards the end of the year, my first graders knew what books they had been waiting for and a good idea which would be just right. With many hands up for the same book, I had the liberty to guide who ended up with each book. But, I was proud that as they snacked, they switched out some choices that weren't just right. While I wouldn't do this every week ,my students enjoyed it and it was a quick and fun way to see them chomping for new books!

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    1. This sounds like a great way to foster enthusiasm for books and a great way to make sure books get into the right hands! A friend of mine made a raffle cup where kids can put their names in to be the next reader of a popular book. I love that idea, too!

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  5. Hi!! I just found your blog and am your newest follower! I also do a book swap on Fridays!! (and yes, it does look like chaos for a while-- but it's well worth it!)

    I would love it if you visited and followed me!!

    Kristen
    A Day in First Grade

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  6. Love the idea of a Friday book swap. I am your newest follower. I would love to have you stop by and visit my blog when you get a chance.

    April
    Wolfelicious

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  7. What a great idea! I've never thought of doing it that way and I am going to try it for sure next year. Thanks for posting this. I really learn so much from practical posts like this. Please keep them coming...more of how you "do the good stuff" concerning D5. Thanks so much!

    rene'
    A Passion For Primary

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    1. Thanks so much for your comment, Rene! I think it's important for all of us to keep these kinds of conversations going!

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  8. Laura,

    I am hosting a Daily 5 Linky Party on my blog after reviewing chapter six for our book study. I found your wonderful blog and thought you might like to link up.....

    Deb at Fabulously First
    My TpT Store

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  9. Hi. I love your site! I have been using Daily 5 and CAFE for the last few years, along with Donalyn Miller (especially when I was teaching 5th grade). This past year, we implemented shopping as part of check-in. Students would indicate they wanted to shop, along with selecting their Daily 5. Then, during that Daily 5 time, they would head to the library. After shopping they would begin their Daily 5 activity. We set parameters that you can shop if you are selecting Read to Self, Word Work, or Work on Writing. It worked well! Some students would want to shop regularly, but we had data, so we could direct them as needed.
    A few times a year, I meet with each student to go through their book boxes and have them sort for keep and return and we work through refreshing just right and favorites, etc. They love this time together talking about their choices.

    Again, thank you for sharing!
    Cheers,
    Shelly

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    1. Very interesting! I'd never considered letting them shop during a regular round but will definitely give that some thought.

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