Okay, so you know how I’m all about Reader’s Theater in my classroom?
And not the kind that has thirty different parts and the kids sit on stools and they each say one thing. I have vivid memories of this in junior high and I was always so concerned about it because I grew up in a dramatic family . . . which means my parents met in high school through drama, and then began a drama ministry in every church we ever went to, and then every play they ever performed that had characters with kids meant I was in it. So I knew drama and sitting around on stools just reading one line and then daydreaming until all the other kids said their lines was not it.
That was not a play.
But ever since I started writing my own little two and three character plays for my students to practice reading and reading fluency, I am now all about Reader’s Theater in my classroom. Mainly because, every year, no matter the class, my kids are OBSESSED.
And every other year or so, I always have a shy student who does not like to participate, raise their hand, speak, come up in front of the class, etc, but for some unknown, crazy, bizarre reason will come up in front of the class to read a little ole two-page play. I am always flabbergasted! So are the other kids who can’t believe it and so they clap wildly for that student, and then I feel like music should be building to a crescendo in the background as the camera pans out to a window into a classroom where it’s all warm and cozy inside, but snowing outside.
But that’s just me.
Drama. I’m all about it.
So any who . . .
I have a couple of reading groups who are struggling with CVC words and reading them FLUENTLY. To the point where I want to bang my head on the table because we know this word, we just practiced this word, we sounded it out, we blended it, we re-read it, we said it in the sentence, we re-read the sentence, we wrote it on our whiteboards, we know this word, BUT HERE WE ARE. WE ARE STUCK AGAIN.
And that’s when it hit me.
I could write a word family play and my kids would be NONE THE WISER!
And, even though most word family stories sound like this: The cat sat on the mat. The cat sat on the hat. The cat sat on the rat, and you kind of want to poke your eyes out from the sheer ridiculousness of it all, I feel like I was somehow able to still make them fun and funny.
Because my kids always want to do the “funny” plays.
And I’m like HELLO? I AM FUNNY ALL THE TIME. ALL OF MY PLAYS ARE FUNNY. THIS GOES HAND IN HAND, DON’T YA KNOW?
So I think they’re really going to like these new plays and they’re going to practice their short-vowel-word-family fluency at the same time so it’s a HUGE WIN-WIN!
I added a b/w, one page version of each play so that my kids could highlight the word family we’re working on, and then I can also send it home for them to practice reading with a family member. And since they’re obsessed, I know they’re going to bug their parents or older sibling by saying read this play with me, I’ll be Dog, and you be Cat, and then we’ll switch! AND THEY WILL GET ADDED PRACTICE.
Not to toot my own horn, but I think I just NAILED IT.
Here’s one of my favorite plays from the Short u Pack!
Click on the picture to grab the b/w one page printable to use in your own classroom!
As for me, I’m off to enjoy my last day of Thanksgiving Break.
It’s raining here and I am trying to figure out a way not to run all of the errands I should have run while on break, as well as accomplish all of the things on my school to-do list that I should have accomplished while on break.