- Author: Franki Sibberson and Karen Szymusiak
- Year: 2004
- Grade Range: 3-6
- Media: 2 60-minute discs + viewing guide and bonus material
- ISBN: 978-157110-402-1
- Item No.: WEB-0402
Readers in grades 3–6 present unique challenges and opportunities for teachers. Many intermediate readers can decode text well, but few have the skills required for the thick textbooks and complex literature they will encounter in the middle grades and beyond. Teachers need to guide students as they develop sophisticated strategies for tackling a variety of new text, while helping students cultivate the independence and self-reflection they need for reading success beyond the elementary grades.
Bringing Reading to Life is a series of four video programs filmed in Franki Sibberson's fifth-grade classroom. The eighteen classroom vignettes present a vibrant portrait of readers at work, delving into novels and nonfiction with ease and confidence, even as they grapple with the new demands of increasingly difficult texts. Franki and colleague Karen Szymusiak show the importance of thoughtful room design and classroom library layout, carefully structured reading groups, brief whole-class lessons, extended discussions that build on previous reading experiences, and individual reading in a wide range of texts.
Franki and Karen also demonstrate a multitude of teaching and learning strategies that help students in grades 3–6 thrive, including mini-lessons, conference and discussion techniques, reading notebook design and use, small-group structures and writing extensions, and read-aloud routines.
The four 30-minute programs comprising the series are The Reading Community, The Teacher's Role, Taking the Conversation Deeper: Read-Alouds, and Reading Groups. Within the programs you will find:
examples of over a dozen high-quality novels and nonfiction texts that target specific reading skill development;
anchor charts designed as scaffolds for holding ideas in the midst of classroom discussions;
read-aloud sessions over two days showing how conversations build and change over time;
reading notebooks used as tools for conversation, charting thinking, and setting reading goals;
small-group discussions (both teacher and peer-led);
mini-lessons and class discussions on previewing strategies, goal setting, tracking themes in literature, and effective use of reading notebooks;
integration of comprehension strategy instruction with literary analysis of text;
examples of routines, use of classroom space, and shared expectations that lead to greater student independence;
sample graphic organizers and written assignments;
guidance for involving families and other adults as literacy role models.
The Bringing Reading to Life viewing guide includes numerous workshop suggestions, classroom extensions, reflection guides for students, and questions for group discussion.
The DVD includes over 30 minutes of additional footage, including interviews, extended play versions of a whole-class discussion and conferences during reading workshop, and a narrative overview of wall displays.