My Reading Intervention Basket

Hey Everyone,

Today was another great day! Judged a talent show audition at my school. Can I just say, some of these kids could out sing Adele and Celine combined! WOWZA!!! I'm really looking forward to tomorrows batch of auditions!

I'm also loving this linky party that's going on (see post below for more info). Getting to "meet" all kinds of new and great bloggers out there! Have I mentioned how much I love to blog and chat with all you wonderful educators. It's such an amazing community!

I'm also over the moon with the fact that I have a student-teacher. One of the many great things about having Ms. Amanda in my class is that I get to have a lot of one-on-one time with some of my struggling students, while she runs a lesson. I am beyond grateful for the time I get to spend with these kiddies. In just two weeks, most of the students I meet with, have gone up one reading level!

Now let's face it! There is no such thing as a homogenous classroom and the variations in academic levels of my kiddies range from k-3 and everything in between! I have students learning second grade concepts (as this is the grade that I teach) as well as students on modified, adapted and even enriched programs! This is a very busy classroom! Like I said, I am cherishing this extra time I get to work with some kiddies one-on-one.

Let it be clear that this post is about one-on-one time for reading intervention and is aside from all the shared and guided reading activities that we do in small groups. That's also going on! When I am without a student-teacher, the remedial teacher in our school conducts these 
little one-on-one meetings with my kiddos. I also keep kiddies (voluntarily) in at recess and lunch (don't worry I let them eat!) to meet with them. 

The activities change, based on the academic level of the child. However, I will tell you a little about what I do with some of my students who are non-readers. 

I start with a review of our sounds (Which we also do each day as a class during morning routine. We have large sound cards on the wall and a special student gets to point while everyone practices the sounds). You can get yourself a FREE COPY of these fabulous sound charts 
over at my bestie's blog First Grade Frenzy. I'm telling you, these things are life savers!

The above sound chart is great because it fits in one page and the students can have it in their writing folders and reading baskets. I use it with reading intervention as a tool to review all the sounds. I also use it with my students who are reading, however not at level. More specifically, today a student was reading a book called The Big Hiccup Problem and came across the word "burp." He did not recognize the word and paused for some time. I simply pointed to the last picture on this sound card which displays the sound "ur" and a picture of a turkey. Almost instantaneously, he was able to sound out the word burp!

After reviewing the sounds, we practice some word families. I love word families for beginning readers because of the repetition and confidence that it builds. Let's be honest, it's also kind of fun!
So here's what I do...

I begin by showing my student a word family card and ask them to read the word. For instance, the "ar" family and then give he/she a stack full of alphabet card letters to make words. It looks something like this...

Then, I have the student read the word (obviously!) and then the student gets to record it on this lovely sheet! There is room for "real" and "nonsense" words.

The kiddies love this and as I mentioned earlier, it does wonders for their confidence in reading.
You can grab yourself a copy of this and many other activities in my Word Family Wonderland Unit, over at my Teacher Store.

After the word families, we usually read a book. Now for my non-readers and struggling readers, they are reading a book that is just right for them as I don't want to discourage or frustrate them. I usually choose three that are good fits and asked the student to look through them and choose the one he/she wants to read. Interest plays a great role in how successful the reading of the book will go! First, I ask the student to look at the pictures on each page and tell me what is happening. This helps with the reading a great deal. The the student reads the words to me. I also have them reread the book, as now they know the words and are very proud and happy to read the book without stumbling.

The last activity we do is sight word practice. I have eight sets of sight words and usually introduce a set a week (sometimes it may take longer or shorter, depending on the students grasp of the words). Each time we meet we review the sight words we have learned along with the new ones. I use the cards from my Sight Word Unit and just drill, drill, drill them! We all know these are words they need to know on sight and not sit around and try to decode and sound them out. Sometimes we also play a game with the words such as...

ABC Order



Fill in the Blank

You can find these and many more games for each of the eight sets of sight words in my Sight Word Literacy Center Activity Pack at my Teacher Store.

All these activities essentially take place over a span of 15 to 20 minutes. I know it seems like a lot, however we do go through it rather quickly! As for my readers who are simply not reading at level, I typically choose a book that is one level higher than their actual reading level and have them read it to me. So far, this has been working great for me, as I am there to guide them when they are struggling and I help them choose strategies that are useful.

For instance, when they come across a word and read it correctly, but do not sound out the vowel properly, I ask them if they know the word or if it sounds funny. They are usually able to recognize that the word is unfamiliar and thus I tell them to reread the word using the different vowel sound, such as short (if they read it long the first time and vice versa). I also get the opportunity to remind them of rules for long vowels, silent "E" and much more. It's always a great review of some of the concepts we have learned over the year.

I also encourage them to refer to the very special aforementioned sound chart. When they see a word that has the "ir" sound, they can look at the picture of a girl and remember what sound "ir" makes.

I remind them to look at the picture cues (absolutely nothing wrong with using a picture to help) as well as reading the rest of the sentence to see if they can figure out what the tricky word might be. By reading a book that is slightly more challenging, the students learn new vocabulary and are faced with new words to read. Often, once they have read the words in one book, it is imprinted in their reading repertoire and they are usually able to read it again.

Most of the time the more difficult books are not read with the outmost greatest fluency and intonation, so I usually give them the book again and ask them to read it faster! We turn it into a game. I read the page and then ask them to try and read it faster than me. Sometimes we even time it (obviously, I don't read it as fast as I actually could!) It's usually quite funny. I will also have them reread the book on their own later on in the day or during the week to continue to practice fluency.

Now this might all seem like a lot and you might be thinking, these kiddies must get sick of all this work and especially of reading the same book over and over again. Let's keep in mind that these are second graders and they love to play games with repetition as well as read and read and read books over and over again (at least mine do!). My students ask me daily, is it my turn to read with you! I also throw in LOTS of praise and stickers! Furthermore, I take the time to have a little conversation with them, this is usually the time they tell me about something special or what they did on the weekend. They feel so special spending quality alone time with the teacher. They have to share me with 20 other kiddies, sometimes its nice to have me all to themselves for some time!

I hope this has been helpful to some of you! I'm sure you all implement similar practices in your classrooms but if you are able to come away from this with one
new idea or strategy, then I've done my blogging duties!

P.S. Come on, I'm almost at 100! Let's keep showing the love!

Until next time...
Ms. Nicole xo


  1. Replies
    1. My pleasure! Thanks for stopping by!!!

  2. Love the reading intervention basket!! I'm your newest follower! You should stop by my blog sometime. I used to teach 2nd grade, but have been in first a few years now. :)

    1. Thanks! I'm loving how effective it is! My kiddies are really improving!!!

  3. I am having a hard time locating the sound charts through the link and on your TpT. I think these are great! Do you know how I can get to them?- Tara

    1. The sound charts belong to my friend Leslie over at I think you can probably still find them there or maybe in her TpT store First Grade Frenzy. The Word Family activities are mine and have been updated (they look totally different now!) and can be found in my TpT shop: Today, in Second Grade


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