Whether you prefer guided reading, strategy groups, close reading, or individual conferences, this is a list of 10 items that I have personally used throughout the years to help me with my small group instruction. I stand by the belief, that any of the supplies that you use at the guided reading table (or teacher table, whichever way you want to call it) should never take the reader’s attention away from the actual reading. So if you are hoping to read about those supplies that look cute but are not purposeful, I suggest you move on. BUT, if you are looking for actual supplies that will enhance your instruction, and help you to be more organized to better instruct your students, then please stay put.♥
Before, writing this article I consulted with my dear friend Marie from The Literacy Spot. She is the single most knowledgeable and humble teacher I know.
The Next Step in Guided Reading
I know I write about this book a lot and there is a reason for that. If you are a seasoned reading teacher or a brand new teacher out of college, this book should be a first step. The research, lesson plan formats, and instructional advice, are the best. I have personally seen Jan Richardson at a state conference, and she had me drooling with all of her knowledge and wisdom. You can see for yourself HERE.
If you are teaching emerging readers or providing reading interventions, these magnetic letters are a must. They will allow you to help your students develop a sense for the alphabetic principle among other things:
- Letter recognition
- Sight word development
- Sentence Building
You can check them out HERE!
Or whisper-phones. These are perfect for students to hear themselves reading or as you read with other students at the reading table. A suggestion though: take them home and give them a good wash them in your dishwasher more often than not. Normally, I may only have a couple of students who need the reading phone because they are not yet capable of reading silently. So I write their names on each reading phone to avoid the spread of germs. You can check them out HERE!
Book Buddy Bags
These book buddy bags are not for your small groups table. They are to be used to send baggie books home with your students. A literacy home-to-school connection is a very important part of your balanced literacy classroom. I used to send baggie books with my students on a weekly basis when I taught 1st grade a number of years ago. You can check them out HERE!
A timer is a necessary evil. I use my timer to time myself when I am teaching whole group lessons and my small groups. It helps me to keep an adequate pace and to provide my students a fair amount of time equally. I also use it to time my students when we are doing fluency practice or drill. You can take a look HERE!
Do you have students who are highly overwhelmed by large amounts of text? These reading rulers help your struggling readers by relieving the symptoms of Visual Stress. Visual Stress affects 20% of the population, and 5% to the point of making reading very difficult, or even impossible. It can cause headaches, poor tracking, the apparent movement of words and letters, and slow or halting reading, to name just a few symptoms. You can see them for yourself HERE!
Organization how I love you so! Your guided reading table definitely needs a caddy to carry all of your supplies for the students to use. You can see it HERE!
Felt pens are not a want, they are a need. From grading, to “to-do” lists, and anecdotal notes… felt pens are a must! I believe that teacher heaven is filled with felt pens and other office supplies. You can see them HERE!
Book bins are a necessity as well. I used them to keep my students self selected reading material, but I also have some extra ones to organize my guided reading materials as well. This way, when I call a group of students to my table, my lesson plans for each group are nicely organized in one place. You can see them HERE!
A tabletop easel is a necessity as well. Having one of these at your guided reading table, will allow you to demonstrate lessons, model reading strategies, check for understanding, and so much more! This one in particular is my favorite because it is magnetic, and you can use magnetic letters on it! See it for yourself HERE!
I hope you found this list full of useful supplies! Thank you SO much for reading, until next time!