Literature circle roles 3rd grade & worksheets

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Have sầu you ever been part of a book club?

A number of years ago (pre-kids và gray hair), my sister taught kindergarten and I taught first và second grade. Though both of us had started our careers with older learners, we loved our young students – and we constantly sought out ways lớn improve our teaching.

But we also knew that our nội dung knowledge was taking a hit. Most of our school days focused on teaching literacy và math – not high cấp độ social studies & science concepts.

To make sure we kept learning about the world around us, we created our own private book club – the Anna-Kate Book Club. Each month we chose a new nonfiction topic, selected our own books, and read them in the rare moments we weren’t in the classroom. At the over of the month, we hopped on the phone khổng lồ talk about what we’d learned.

Over 15 years (& a total of ten kids between us) later … I still remember many of the things we talked about.

Talking about books is powerful.

It’s so powerful that many teachers have book clubs in their classroom. We often refer to lớn them asliterature circles.


What ARE literature circles?

Literature circles are small groups of students who meet khổng lồ discuss the same book. The discussion guides students to lớn a deeper understanding of the text. With the right modifications, we can implement literature circles in all grade levels.

Woah – groups of kids talking together during classtime. Sounds lượt thích it could get out of hvà very quickly.Are literature circles really worth it?

Literature circles have so many benefits! Here are four.

The opportunity khổng lồ choose their own books and discuss them with their classmates helps our learners develop a love of reading. If they love to lớn read, they’ll be motivated to lớn vày it more often. And the more they read, the stronger readers they will become.

Another benefit is the power of conversation. When students talk about their reading, they can become more critical thinkers. Discussion helps them make sense of the text. Feedback from other students helps them form new ideas.

A third benefit is that literature circles allow our students to lớn become active participants in their own learning. “Students commit to lớn reading becausethey raise the questions andtheyconsider their own experiences as they respond.” (Getting Started with Literature Circles, by Noe và Johnson)

Finally, the literature circle format helps our students learn khổng lồ have sầu meaningful, respectful discussions – an important life skill, lớn be sure.

The biggest reason literature circles FAIL

As a new teacher, I had something many young teachers possess – enthusiasm and optimism.

I collected every book I could find about literature circles. I researched, read, highlighted, and knew, without a doubt, that literature circles were right for my classroom.

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I quickly prepared some materials và jumped in with both feet.


Quickly the noise & chaos became more than this type A teacher could bear.

I struggled to lớn get literature circles off the ground.

I made the mistake that many teachers make – the biggest reason that literature circles fail – I had failed to think through the logistics & plan accordingly.

Before you begin, think through the logistics.How will students choose their books?How will you khung groups?How many groups will meet at a time?How often will groups meet?As a teacher, what will be your role?How will you teach your students how lớn participate?How will students prepare for their meetings?How will you và your students assess their learning?But don’t overthink it.

Yes, you vì chưng need lớn think through all the logistics khổng lồ make sure that students know what’s expected of them and so you can help them stay on traông chồng.

But you don’t have sầu khổng lồ overdo it.

There are a lot of clever ideas out there about “roles” that you should assign to students in literature circles – the Discussion Director, Word Wizard, Literary Luminary, etc. With this mã sản phẩm each student has a particular role in the group – whether that’s to lớn keep everyone on traông chồng, point out new vocabulary words, or locate “golden” passages worthy of discussion.

It’s not wrong to lớn use these roles if they work for you & your students. But “sometimes, managing the roles takes so much energy và focus that students thua trận sight of their real purpose – khổng lồ talk about books.” (Getting Started with Literature Circles, by Noe và Johnson)


Rather than focusing on specific roles, I recommkết thúc a svào focus on helping all students listen và discuss. At the over of this post, you’ll find printable bookmarks that can help.

Just get started.

Just as you shouldn’t jump in before you’ve thought through the details, you shouldn’t wait until you know exactly how everything will go. You can’t plan for every single contingency. At some point, you just need to lớn start.


Make sure you’re clear about what students are responsible for before each meeting. You might give sầu them a half sheet like the one pictured above sầu (it’s included in the tải về at the over of this post).

Help students reflect on the process.

After you’ve sầu implemented literature circles, assess how they’re going – and include your students. Theywill not go smoothly at first – and maybe not for some time. Invite your students lớn vày self-assessments, & hold class discussions to lớn talk about things you might improve.

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The above sầu self-assessment forms are included in the packet at the over of this post.

I hope this post gave sầu you some things to think about as you plan for literature circles in your classroom!

Chuyên mục: literature