Sometimes, it is easy to think that our beloved nursery rhymes may need to go out the window with CCSS: however, nursery rhymes can support CCSS in many ways!
Here, I use nursery rhymes to create a culture of reading for a purpose. Here the purpose is taught: Our students need to get used to editing their own work for capitalization and punctuation. This lesson explicitly speaks to that, so it teaches students what to look for and what to do!
With this lesson, the purpose of enjoying a nursery rhyme is to look for mistakes (with capitalization and punctuation) and edit the text to make it better! In the end, we enjoy a familiar tale, while also practicing our foundational skills of reading fluently and editing a piece of writing for punctuation and capitalization mistakes!
This lesson needs to be completed after students have been exposed to an initial reading of "Jack and Jill." Students relate more and better to familiar texts, so it is important that they have heard this little nursery rhyme prior to this lesson.
This lesson begins with me on the carpet and all of my students around me. I sit where all of the students can my chart where I have personally written the words to "Jack and Jill."
1- We go through this nursery rhyme together, reading it aloud to build fluency.
2- We go through and add capital letters and periods (where I have purposefully left them off).
3- I go through and point out some things students can pay attention to- I also ask them to help with finding some things in the text.
For step 1, we re-read the nursery rhyme together, aloud, to build fluency.
*This step is important because it allows all students to access the information needed to perform this lesson. Also, the more times a student reads fluently with inflection, the more often they are to build their confidence and skill level! I think this step is absolutely necessary as it lays the foundation for the rest of the lesson and for more learning to occur!
Here is an image of the capitalization and punctuation edits made.
For step 2, here are the editing skills I want my students to focus on:
I tend to leave names and the first letters in a sentence un-capitalized, so students can fix them.
I leave out all punctuation so we have to listen for where periods (or exclamation points and question marks) might go.
*I leave the punctuation and capitalization out because I want students to see where they can find mistake to correct; if I want them to do this in their writing, they have to know how to see it and what to look for!
Here is an image of the foundational skills edits made.
For step 3, here are the foundational skills I like for my students to be aware of:
I look for chunking in words, finding smaller words inside of larger words.
I look for ways to break words apart, particularly by syllables; this reminds students to break words down when writing them (because it's easier to do one part at a time).
I look for sight words to review for automaticity.
I look for familiar blends, digraphs and endings. (This is important- it helps students' decoding skills while reading when they know how to quickly see pieces of words.)
I look for silent E words to build the skill of looking for long vowel sounds.
*This particular step really builds a bridge to all of the phonics and phonemic awareness skills that we work on. I think it is important to show students that the little things we work on in isolation are indeed focused on because they correlate to reading larger pieces of text! It is important to show students how to find these little skills within their reading and writing because it builds a deeper conceptual understanding and shows them how our instruction applies to real-life!
Here is our complete chart after all three steps have been completed! You can see how all three steps run together on this chart and provide an overview of all of the great things we covered in the pieces of this mini-lesson!
In the end, after about five minutes, we have gotten in a lot of practice which will end up helping students with their reading and writing skills!
Attached is the video of my students participating in this particular lesson.
*FYI: We did complete the punctuation and capitalization portion (step 2) as a separate mini-lesson on this day, prior to the foundational skills review portion (step 3) due to an assembly. Usually, they would all be done together.
Since this lesson doesn't have student work, I assess my students by listening to their responses. It can be hard to listen to each student, but I really try to move around and listen to a couple of students for each answer. Also, I know which students have difficulties with specific things, so I will listen to particular students when I prompt for certain information. Overall, I make sure I listen to each student at least once or twice during this exercise.
At the beginning, when we are first going over these lessons, I like to keep a checklist of student responses. Throughout the week, I will ask students to give me some missing punctuation or capitalization and I will note their response. Also, I LOVE to check on students' understanding of our current phonics skills, so I can do checklists for that as well when I feel the need to do so!
An easy way to extend this task is to provide students with a copy of the text, following this lesson. I like to give my kids the same incorrect version that I began with. I have them edit for punctuation and capitalization. Then, I have them search out different skills to circle or underline; then, they have a chance to talk to someone else about what they noticed.
When we have time for this step (particularly at snack time or transitional time), I LOVE to have students complete this, as it allows them to recall the review skills and own them for themselves.
Here is an example of students' work from this task! Here, you can see the student corrections to capitalization and punctuation, as well as their search for foundational skills! I assigned each group an assignment to find and/or correct something particular, and I gave them a certain color- this made assessing a lot easier and faster!
Another way I like to extend this lesson (and even asses), at least once per week, is by allowing the students to take the reigns and make the changes/findings for the lesson. This takes quite a bit more time, so that's why I tend to do this only a couple of times per week. I like to allow students to find the skills inside the text because, 1) it lets them talk through their answers, and 2) it really lets me assess and guide individuals. For example, if Shawn has a really tough time pronouncing the -tch digraph, I will call him to find it, underline it and pronounce the digraph and the word. Or, if Cindy has a hard time with long vowels, I will call on her to find a word with a long vowel. I can also call students to find specific sight words that I know they don't know well enough! With this model, the options are endless (as long as we have the time to devote to it).
I love to extend this practice into centers too! I van give students a center like Presidential Capitalization and Punctuation center and then asses their learning!
Finally, I can provide students with reminders of this lesson when writing. I can use things like this journaling page with the editing checklist included at the bottom to help them be more successful!