Chapters 1 and 2
In addition, you may (read: definitely) want to check out the other amazing bloggers who are participating in this book study. Clicking on the picture below will take you to one of the book study's organizers, where you'll find other bloggers who have linked up.
Because so much of what's written in these chapters is really exactly what you need to be hearing, I'm more or less going to be taking what The 2 Sisters have written, and explaining what I do in my classroom. If you find yourself lost, confused, or unsure, go back to these chapters and read them again and again. No joke, I've read chapters 5 and 6 at least three times a piece already, and plan on reading them several more time before school actually starts.
Steve Jobs said (and The 2 Sisters quoted), "Because believing that the dots will connect down the road will give you the confidence to follow your heart even when it leads you off the well-worn path." I think it's important to note that on this D5 journey, there will be days when you feel like you've spent ridiculous amounts of time teaching and practicing the routines and procedures of D5, and yet you feel like you're on an island - no one else around you is taking this much time to get these "launched." In fact, they're already digging into content that you haven't even introduced yet.
It's ok...more than ok actually. If you get nothing else from this chapter/blog post, let it be that the time you are taking to teach and practice these routines and procedures is time well-spent. It is time that you are saving later on, when you're students are completely independent - like you could leave the room (not that I've done this or recommend it), meet with a small group, take a 5-minute breather for yourself, and your students will not miss you, nor will they likely notice you're gone. The dots will connect later down the road, and your heart will be happy, and you'll never once look back or question yourself...until next year when you launch again :)
I am so excited about the changes the sisters made in how they organized the explanation of the launch. It makes more sense to me, and I can't wait to change up my launch because of that.
As you read this chapter, don't feel like you have to do everything they do, exactly the same way. You know your schedule, students, and so on. There are a few things that are "non-negotiables" if you will. Things like The 10 Steps to Teaching and Learning Independence should NOT be skipped. Don't try to shorten the practice time by omitting one of those 10 steps. Also, start with "Read to Self" just as the sisters do. Also, teach the foundation lessons. The beauty of the foundation lessons, is that The 2 Sisters don't tell you what book to use as a mentor text, so that *favorite* book you read each year, can certainly be used during at least one of the foundation lessons.
I begin launching D5 on the very first day of school. It's not nearly as glamorous as The 2 Sisters make theirs sound, but we start. Each class is different, and each year, what we're able to complete changes. It just depends on the group. Something that really helps me make sense of what foundation lesson goes with what round of D5, I made this chart. I'm super visual, and this helps keep things organized in my head.
The 2 Sisters do a really fantastic job of outlining their plan to launch D5 (which is why you're not finding much here - why reinvent the wheel, right?). You'll find it in Appendix I...it's color coded, there are times listed, it's outlined by day...seriously a beautiful thing. They mention at the beginning, "All times are approximate. Adjust as needed, and what doesn't fit today, move to tomorrow." Repeat that several times throughout the launch period. It's got to be fluid, flexible...make it work for you and your class!
As The 2 Sisters do, my first foundation lesson is always Three Ways to Read a Book. I made this poster that I'm going to have my students put in their interactive reading notebooks to serve as a reminder. You can pick it up here or by clicking the picture. The version on the right is more "interactive" in which students would fill in the blanks.
As I mentioned before, when you're teaching the foundation lessons, choose books you would normally read. Just think about them in the context of teaching foundation lessons, instead of only as "First Days Read-Alouds." Here are a few of my favorites that work well with foundation lessons and are great for first days of school. I'll be posting more about read-alouds I use during the first few days of school later on.
One of the Three Ways to Read a Book is to Retell a Story. Retelling is a super important part of reading in general, and it's something I've had a lot of students struggle with. I created this graphic organizer (which we make together on large chart paper) to help students remember the basics. I do NOT teach all the components in one sitting. We start with one finger at a time, and gradually add-on until we've got it all! The one on the right is more "interactive" for notebooks :)
The other bloggers participating have some really, really amazing posts on Chapter 5/Chapter 6 (I'll be posting on this before next Friday). You definitely want to check them out!