Instructional Decision-Making Before Reading During/After Reading Letter/Word Work Reading/Writing Connections

Facilitator Notes

Independent writing within a guided reading lesson occurs when each child in the group creates her/his own story or message, usually on the same topic.  We use independent writing with struggling readers at transitional levels (approximately levels 16-24), to put more emphasis on teaching them to respond to their reading through writing, while still supporting them with strategies to accurately execute what they compose.

Reading Recovery/Intervention teachers Ashinique Owens and Elizabeth Arnold both use independent writing with their guided reading groups of second grade struggling readers.  In both cases, they support the comprehension developed through reading and discussing the text by extending it into writing.  Since the students have a variety of needs, e.g., taking words apart, automaticity with high frequency words, attending to punctuation, and being flexible in trying different strategies to read or write the words they encounter/need, both teachers teach and reinforce a variety of problem solving strategies and differentiate the support they provide to each student.


How does independent writing support struggling readers and writers at transitional text levels?

Supporting Documents: Text excerpts of Where Does Your Pizza Come From? and The Careful Crocodile; Student journal writing pages for Where Does Your Pizza Come From? and The Careful Crocodile


Video: Differentiating Support, Level 16; Transcript,
Second Grade, Ashinique Owens