Guided Reading Levels
I am a fan of "Reading Workshop". I am concerned, however, about "levelmania".
Since the beginning of the school year, my students were required to read at their assigned GR level. This requirement was only enforced during the Independent Reading part of the RW.
This month's unit is about characters in series books. I decided to abandon GR level restraints. I made sure to remind them about the "Just-Right-Book" strategy.
This has been the most exciting unit so far! When we started the unit, I told them that their life as a reader would never be the same. I really gave my best Oscar-hopeful moment. I realize now, that my scenery-chewing was unnecessary. My students no longer need me to shape their identity as a reader.
Most of my students have been reading books above (or sometimes below) their GR levels. The boys in my class have really taken off! Why deny them "Horrible Harry" just because it's an L/M?
Anyway, we had a staff development meeting from a NYC college (I won't name). When I told her that I lifted the GR level restraint for this month, she gasped.
I've done the research, and I stand by my decision. Any opinions?