Just wondering what reading basal (if any) you all use in your classrooms and what are your thoughts on the it. Also, do you go story, by story through the textbook, or are you allowed to skip around? (I've heard "horror" stories of teachers under strict district guidelines as to what to teach and when.)

Tags: basal, elementary, reading

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Great question! I think it's worthy of it's own discussion thread! Don't reply here--I'll start the new thread on grading Lit Circles.

BTW, I'd also LOVE to see a list of which novels you use for whole class and which you use for circles.

As far as short stories, I love just taking a book and photocopying a page or two to highlight, mark up, and discuss(covered under "fair use" of copyright if used for education & destroyed).
Hi Michelle
We just spent the day at our district mapping out the stories in our Harcourt series. Each grade level has already mapped out priority grade level expectations across the school year. Then teachers went through the basal and mapped out the stories that were good for addressing the grade level expectations. However, most grade levels did not go off the sequence of the stories of the basal. The sequence of the themes and stories remain the same, but all of the activities that go with the stories will not. The focus is on the GLEs and the stories are the means to help students achieve them. Teachers did have the option to skip around but they have been using the basal and feel most of it does follow a good sequence. They are cutting down the amount of time maybe on some of the stories and cutting out some of the stories but need to supplement those stories so that their teaching materials and strategies are serving the grade level expectations.

This is a large district, 5 elementary schools and students are very transient from school to school. It is critical that the schools are consistent at some level.

Rebecca
Michelle-
What is your thoughts on Harcourt? Is it StoryTown?
Here are some reading series you may be interested in... Ready-Set-Learn is an early childhood reading series filled with fun and engaging activities to develop basic skills to succeed in school.

The Discovering Genres series is a collection of books that exposes young readers to the genres of English literature. They are filled with standards-based lessons to help students recognize each genre, develop vocabulary, learn reading strategies, practice writing skills, make grammar connections, use graphic organizers, assess what they have learned, and complete culminating projects. These books not only prepare students for academic success, but for a lifetime of reading enjoyment as well.

In our series we go story to story.  It incorporates vocabulary, rhyming words, writing,and many other activities.  It is possible if you want to skip a story and come back to it but it is recommended to follow the books. It is a Scott Foresman series.

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