Making Meaning provides a full year of research-based, whole-class reading and vocabulary instruction for grades K–6. Reading lessons teach students comprehension and self-monitoring strategies that proficient readers use to make sense of text. Vocabulary lessons combine direct instruction in word meanings with engaging activities that teach high-utility words found in the Making Meaning read-aloud texts.
Reading is an interactive process that involves thinking, questioning, discussing, rereading, and responding to texts. In Making Meaning lessons, carefully selected nonfiction and fiction read-aloud texts provide a platform for rich discussions as students encounter increasingly complex texts and build their vocabularies. Lessons intentionally integrate academics with social skill development, creating an environment in which students learn to collaborate, agree and disagree respectfully, and take responsibility for their own learning.
Being a Reader utilizes the following:
Read-Alouds: In Making Meaning lessons, comprehension strategies are taught directly through read-aloud experiences. This ensures that students have equal opportunity to access the text regardless of their reading abilities. Then, through guided and independent strategy practice, students learn to use these strategies to make sense of their own reading. Lessons also include plenty of time for independent reading practice and individual conferences so that students of varying levels will be able to develop as readers at their own pace. In a world of sound bites expressed quickly in electronic formats, students benefit from having time to think about, hear, and share complete ideas.
Individualized Daily Reading and Conferring: At the heart of the Making Meaning lesson is Individualized Daily Reading (IDR) and conferring. IDR is a time when students self-select texts at their appropriate reading levels and read them independently. Students apply the skills learned during whole-class lessons, learn self-monitoring strategies they can use to check their comprehension, and discuss strategies they can apply when reading to “fix” comprehension problems.
Conferring: During IDR, the teacher confers with individual students about their reading. Conferring allows teachers to assess each student’s comprehension and provides an opportunity to support struggling students, encourage students to read more complex texts, and identify areas of growth for each student.
Explicit Vocabulary Instruction: Vocabulary lessons combine direct instruction in word meanings with engaging, interactive activities that teach high-utility words found in the Making Meaning read-aloud texts. Lessons also focus on developmentally appropriate word-learning strategies that students can use to unlock word meanings when reading independently.
Center for the Collaborative Classroom, https://www.collaborativeclassroom.org/