Collaborative Circle Blog

Word Study + IDR: The Coordination of Word-Learning Strategies and Independent Reading

Are you striving to provide students with word-learning strategies that will help them get unstuck when they encounter unknown words in a variety of texts?

 Are you striving to prepare students to be automatic with word-analysis strategies when reading a variety of texts?

If you answered yes to these questions, consider taking these action steps:

“Word Study develops students’ understanding of how words are constructed as it engages students in examining patterns and similarities in words. Recognizing patterns, rather than memorizing individual words, makes accurate and automatic reading possible.”

Being a Reader Grade 2 Teacher’s Manual

1) Learn more about the independent word-learning strategies taught during Word Study instruction in grade 2 Being a Reader.

Word Study teaches students the independent word-learning strategies necessary to decode unknown words in increasingly complex texts. As the students learn these strategies in word study lessons, it is essential that they transition to applying them while reading independently.

Watch this archived webinar to learn more and see how to efficiently instruct word-learning strategies.

“Word Study develops students’ understanding of how words are constructed as it engages students in examining patterns and similarities in words. Recognizing patterns, rather than memorizing individual words, makes accurate and automatic reading possible.”

Being a Reader Grade 2 Teacher’s Manual

2) Support students to be more metacognitive and provide the opportunity for reteaching as necessary:

  • Provide the students with sticky note(s) to use to mark words they do not know during Individualized Daily Reading (IDR).
  • Ask the students to write down words they do not know.
    • Have the students save their sticky notes or place them in a designated spot for ease of access. (For example, you might create a “Words I Don’t Know Yet” board.)
  • Select a time (during IDR conferences, after the sharing portion of IDR, or during small-group instruction) for the students to share their words and use the words as opportunities to “reinforce” or “reteach” word learning strategies.

3) Prompt students to ask themselves these questions when they encounter unknown words in their reading:

  • What can I try when I come to a word I don’t know?
  • How can I divide that word into parts so that it is easier to read?

These types of experiences will build community and confidence by allowing all students to seek support and help them make decisions about “just right” books. At the same time, they will provide you, the teacher, with trend data on hard-to-decode words that will inform instruction.

4) Support the following students in transferring independent word-learning strategies taught in Word Study to their independent reading and during IDR:

  • Students with foundational skills considerations
    • Grade 2 students who have mastered their complex vowels by successfully completing Sets 1–5 of Being a Reader Small-Group Reading instruction.
    • Grade 4–6 students who were in need of intervention instruction and  successfully completed SIPPS Plus.
  • Students with Word Study considerations
    • Grade 2 students who are receiving Word Study instruction.
    • Grade 3–6 students who have received Word Study or SIPPS Challenge instruction.

See the RTI/MTSS Guidance 2019 document for additional considerations.

5) Collaborate with others teaching Collaborative Literacy! Our Collaborative Classroom Facebook Community Page is an excellent forum for collaboration!

My collaborating partner was Gena Ward, third grade teacher, Nodaway Valley CSD, Iowa! THANK YOU, Gena!

  • Read this post and its comments on the Facebook Community Page to learn more about how this collaboration started.
  • Read this post from Gena on the Facebook Community Page to learn more about her efforts!
  • Read this post from Gena on the Facebook Community Page for an update!