We began with a read aloud of the first few chapters of each book. Students then had time to read independently, in small groups, or with a graduate student. Finally, students got into groups of three and formed literature circles to discuss what they had read so far. We are looking forward to deepening our book discussions this year through the use of literature circles.
After our time spent reading, we had a snack and played some fun Minute to Win It games. The last hour of the morning was spent reading poetry written by famous poets, such as Maya Angelou and Langston Hughes. Students discussed the poems in small groups and picked out stanzas that were meaningful to them. Students also created Heart Maps, in which they added people, places, and things that are meaningful and significant to their lives.
We look forward to delving deeper into poetry as the semester goes on. Next time students will continue reading their books and will begin writing original poems.