By Franziska Laskaris, Assistant Director of Elementary School
Reading groups in the elementary school are in full swing! Each morning at 9:15 students, reading folders in hand, excitedly travel to every nook of our building for an hour of reading. The focus of each group may vary. While some students work on their decoding, encoding, and fluency skills, others explore how to comprehend and think critically about a book or article they are reading. Here is a look at one of our comprehension groups, taught by Rebecca Beck our school librarian.
“Our reading group is currently learning about Malala Yousafzai. Two members of the group felt impassioned by Malala’s story after learning during a current events lesson that she won the Nobel Peace Prize. In an effort to support student interest in Malala’s story, our reading group is currently completing a mini unit on Malala. As a group we have read the children’s book Malala Yousafzai Warrior With Words by Karen Leggett Abouraya. We have also read a Time for Kids article on Malala’s Nobel Peace Prize win. In addition to reading about Malala, our group relocated to the computer lab to look up Malala’s hometown in Pakistan on Google Earth and to locate England on Google Earth to see where she is currently residing. Members of my reading group typed letters to Malala congratulating her on the Nobel Peace Prize win. We also watched a video of Malala’s speech after she learned that she had won this esteemed honor. As a group we have decided to sell bookmarks and have a bake sale to raise money for Malala’s fund http://www.malala.org/.”
Here are samples of the letters written by students in Rebecca’s reading group:
How are you doing? I hope you are happy about your Nobel Peace Prize. We are going to make money so girls can go to school all over the world. We are going to start a big bake sale and make bookmarks. We love how you stood up for girls who don’t go to school and we are going to make as much money as we can. Were you scared when you got shot? You are my role model. When I first heard about you I knew that you were a good person. I have your book, now it is my favorite. Something about me is that I am 9 years old and my name is Ella. My favorite color is blue, what is your favorite color? You are my favorite person because of how you stood up to people all around the world. I hope you are happy with your life right now because you should be proud.
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Congratulations for winning the Nobel Peace Prize. We are raising money for your fund. I hope you are feeling better. How are you doing with the Nobel Peace Prize? How is it coming with your fund? We will help you feel okay about your school. Is it still open? How is your head? My name is Fiona. I am 11 years old and I love to swim. I also play soccer. Hope to hear from you soon.
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I’m so glad you won the Nobel Peace Prize. I agree that girls should go to school with boys too. I’m proud that you won the Nobel Peace Prize. It is huge! I hope your forehead feels better.