A Peek at Reader’s Workshop

This week, I was finally able {a.k.a. I remembered my camera} to take a few pictures of what has been going on in our classroom over the past week! It is seriously over 50 pictures! No joke! In order to save you from total boredom picture overload, I have decided to split up our week just a bit! Beginning with my  favorite part of any day…Reader’s Workshop!

We have been working hard to get our Reading Binders set up and ready to go.

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Thanks Lesson Plan S.O.S. for such a great resource!

Each day, we begin with a short mini lesson that lasts anywhere from 5-10 minutes…depending on when I can pull myself together and shut my mouth! It is so HARD! I am way guilty of over-teaching! I am working on it! :)

This week, our strategy was identifying character traits. We worked on making inferences and drawing conclusions based on our schema and the words in our text. Of course, these words were added to our “Brianstorm” wall so that the students can refer to them throughout the year!


We began studying character traits by making a sweet little self portrait. {I should have taken pictures of all 19…they were so hilarious}.

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After the kiddos completed their sweet illustrations, I introduced a list of 12 new character traits. They had to determine which character traits described their personality. We placed our portraits in a sheet protector and put it in the front of our reading binder. We will be adding character traits over the next few weeks and on into the year! This is a great strategy to really expand their vocabulary over a period of time!

After our short minis, the kids transition into book nooks! Here is the list of comfy, cozy places they get to enjoy during their independent reading time!


Their book nooks change each day!

This week, the kiddos have been completely engaged in “real reading” while I conference with individual students and hold guided reading groups.

During their independent reading time, the students have been recording completed reads in their reading binder. They have also been completing mini book reports on their genre tickets from my Backpacking Through Genres unit. This, along with their genre graph, has really motivated the students to read across the genres and become exposed to a variety of texts.

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This week, the students will begin novel studies during guided reading groups! They can not wait! In fact, last week they hinted at the fact that they were not being challenged enough. And I quote…”Mrs. King, this book was nice, but next week do you think you could give us a challenge?” Umm…I rest my case! Sheesh…give your poor little teacher a break! Ha!

One little addition that I made to my classroom after I began Reader’s Workshop is student book boxes!


The students shop one day a week and place all of their books inside their book boxes! This eliminates ALL talking during Reader’s Workshop! If you do RWS or something similar, I highly recommend reading boxes! I am in LOVE!


Here is a look inside!

After all instruction is complete, the students meet with their chit chat buddies and share all of the learning that was done during their reading time! This is a great way to wrap up all things reading before transitioning into the next subject!

During their reading time, both at school and home, the kiddos have been working extra hard to earn their Oh Snap Reading Points! Maybe that had something to do with the 10+ pies that were smashed in my face at the end of last year!


I am truly blessed with a class that LOVES to read!

This week, (since MAP testing is over) we will be working on selecting those “just right” texts! Thanks to my sweet student teacher and some amazing volunteers, my classroom library is now leveled by Lexile! Praise the Lawd! Here is how I keep the students on track with their book selection!


I am working on compiling all of the resources that I use during my Reader’s Workshop instruction into a file for grades 2-5, so keep your eyes peeled!

What does reading instruction look like in your room?


  1. Great idea to have them identify traits of themselves. That's going to help so much when you do that for characters!! :) Love your book boxes! Much prettier than the cardboard magazine files that I use!

    Second Grade Sparkle

  2. It was so nice getting to meet you yesterday! I had such a blast, but am bummed we didn't get a chance to talk more. Looking forward to keeping up with you Carolina girls...and the next meetup!

    Teachery Tidbits

  3. I absolutely love your book boxes! What a wonderful piece of organization! Loved all of this blog, great ideas here! Loads of fun in this classroom! Please visit me!
    Amy Howbert
    Little Miss Organized

  4. Love all of your reading workshop stuff! How cute!
    Rowdy in First Grade

  5. My school does Reader's Workshop too. For the last 3 or 4 years we have used reading bags instead of boxes. They are tote bags from www.discountmugs.com. We get something cute printed on them too! (Second graders are GRRREAT!) They get to take them home at the end of the year. The students keep their reading bags hung on the back of their chairs that way they always have easy access to it.

    I love reading your blog! :)

  6. Love the book boxes! Where did you find them all? I am so fortunate to be in a brand new school with built in cubbies and those would be perfect!!

  7. I seriously LOVE your blog!! And your classroom is super cute! Your book boxes are ADORABLE! We have smaller ones from Really Good stuff, and they work, but I love the bigger ones.. It's only my first year teaching so I'm still figuring out what works etc, but I love all of your ideas for RW (Especially the binder!) which I can't wait to implement next year! Thanks for being awesome! :)

    Primary Teacherhood

  8. I simply love the binder covers! Where did you get them?