Throughout my 17 years of teaching in the primary grades, I have paired up with a intermediate teacher and implemented Reading Buddies. This experience is a win-win for so many reasons.
1. My first graders are paired up with a stronger reader who is able to help them read and decode words with books on their level. We meet once a week for 20 minutes. This is such an amazing way to build fluency with my firsties!
2. Our school uses the Accelerated Reader program where children are able to read leveled books and take comprehension tests on the computer. We are able to utilize this program that much sooner because our reading buddies are able to show the first graders how to find the program on the computer, how to log in and then help with any unknown words. The reading buddies ARE NOT allowed to help with the answers.
3. Our Reading Buddies take the FCAT, a standardized test here in Florida. We are able to write notes of encouragement and send little snacks and pick me ups during their two weeks of testing. All of our school is matched up with FCAT buddies, but I believe it means even more now as friendships have been made through the year and the kids have a connection to each other. They know we are rooting for them! We are sending over a basket of apples on Monday with our notes of encouragement.
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