My students are now 6-7 days into Roaming. Two students have been making their own I Like books. These books are made up of 5 pages stapled together. Each day the student has dictated a new page beginning with I like, e.g. I like playing with my dad. He or she draws a picture to illustrate the sentence. This helps him / her to recall the general meaning of the page when it is reread on subsequent days.
While the student is drawing, I copy the sentence onto a strip of paper. The student rereads the sentence written in the book, and then reads the same sentence written on the sentence strip. I then cut the sentence strip into two parts and ask the student to put them back into the right order- easy. The student is asked to reread the sentence and check it. The book is left open so that the original sentence can be seen. Then I cut the sentence again into as many parts as the student can manage.
I like playing / with my dad.
I like / playing with / my dad.
I like / playing with / my / dad.
I / like / playing / with / my / dad / .
Each time the student is asked to reread and check. The sentence may eventually be cut into individual words, or 2 or 3 parts depending on the complexity (length) of the sentence and how easily the student can put it back together.
- Make a book that belongs to the student who created it. (ownership)
- Begin each page the same way so that it is easier to read. (confidence)
- Use the language (words and structure) of the student. (ease of reading / rereading) This book is much easier for the student to read compared to purchased books.
- Show that a sentence is made up of words, and word order is important.
- Search and identify words using some means of recall and identification, e.g. 1st letter or general look of the word e.g. little word, long word, tall letter at the end.
- Become familiar with checking. Does it sound right? Does it look right?
- Reread, reread, reread. (Because every time you reread there is an opportunity to make a new discovery, e.g. that word starts the same as that word.)
I use coloured paper to make the books so that each page can be a different colour. I write the sentence strip in the same coloured marker as the page. This makes it easy to sort out the cut up words (which are kept in a plastic bag slipped inside the book) each day. Eventually there are 5 piles of words which match 5 pages. (The words written in green will be sorted to match the sentence on the green page etc.)
At the end of Roaming the students will keep the book (and cut up words) in their classrooms to read and unjumble during Independent Reading. At the same time the students will begin homework which includes unjumbling a sentence each day. By then the students will be very confident with the task.