Before you try this lesson, it is better to select your book and page before you begin. It is also helpful to use sticky notes to cover all but the first part of words you want to practice the strategy on. Sticky noting the words allows the playing field to be even for the class. It also makes it easier to practice each piece of the strategy starting with the Whole Word Strategy.
To use this strategy correctly, students need to practice the Whole Word Strategy. This strategy is looking at the beginning of the word, then the end, and then the middle to confirm. A good way to open this lesson is to have students practice the Whole Word Strategy at their desk. I walk around to monitor and to choose a few students that can model what they did for the class. Students really love to model and to feel confident with using the strategy.
A quick discussion about why and when we use this strategy is good also. Students then are set up to understand the use of the new strategy.
I explain to students that the new strategy uses the Whole Word Strategy. We are going to use it and then make a guess that makes sense. It also requires the student to reread to make sure they have the correct word. Making a sentence make sense is good for accuracy, fluency, and comprehension. Sometimes it slows down our reading but it might be critical to understand the unknown word in order ot understand the page or paragraph.
This read aloud is a cooperative reading. Students are going to help me with the Whole Word strategy and I am going to stop them to explain their guess of the unknown word. Once we have made a guess students will decide whether that word sounds right. I use the document camera and one page from a picture book to help me with the "think aloud" of this strategy. I cover the ends of the words with stickies to help with the guessing and making sense of our guessed word.
Student practice is important after learning any new strategy. They will all need to get out their reading books to practice with a friend. They are going to sit next to a buddy at our desks with a common focus of working on making sense of words.
Each student needs to choose a word from the page they are on to model for the other student. I am going to walk around and monitor their practicing. I am mainly looking for opportunities to offer reinforcement for those that are correctly making their words make sense. I will also work with students who need my help or some guidance to be successful. If their is a group of students who seem to struggle I will meet with them as a strategy group.