Buddy Reading in Kindergarten

Note: This year I am blogging weekly reflections at my school site (weskids.com) in order to provide more transparency in my teaching for parents, students, and the community (local and global). I will be cross-posting most of the entries here at Bit By Bit as well. You can see the original posts at the “Reflections by Mr. S” blog.


Hopefully you and your K child are still enjoying the many wonderful resources at starfall.com. If not, then hopefully this post will reinspire another look at the site—the Kindergarten students love it!

In the next couple of rounds, we’ll be using “Three Little Plays”(http://www.starfall.com/n/level-c/plays/load.htm?f) for students to “buddy-read” together with.
3 Little Plays
I introduce this lesson with help from my student assistant in order to model how to ask the other person which “player” they would like to be in the play, how to take turns with the mouse, and how to know when it’s time to read your character’s lines. The plays are set up like traditional scripts, so I need to demonstrate that the reader does not read the character’s name (which is in UPPERCASE), and I explain what the colon does (:).

My teacher’s assistant (with help from the rest of the class) and I read the first page and I demonstrate how if I need help in reading a word, I click on it and the computer will read it out loud for me (then I need to repeat the word out loud). I also demonstrate that we only click on the words that we need help with.

After the first page is read (with characters of a “dog” and a “cat,” by the way), I talk to students about how we could make it so much better. If I’m the dog, for instance, then I talk about “getting into the dog’s character” and reread my part with expression. I then ask the students to read their part with expression as well.

After demonstrating, students match up with a buddy and are off reading. I watch to make sure that students are only clicking on the words that they really need help with, as well as repeating the word after the computer says it.

That’s what makes this interactive site so great for young readers: they always can click on a word to get help, so no matter what reading level students are at, everyone has support.

Things you can do at home with your scholar:

  • Read out loud with your student as often as you can! Research shows that readers at all levels benefit from being read to.
  • Have them show you the “Three Little Plays” and “buddy read” with them—or with any book for that matter. With a “normal” book, they’ll have to “click you” for you to help them with the words that are difficult!
  • Encourage your students to actually act out the play or turn another story into a play.
  • Encourage your student to “buddy read” with older and younger siblings.
This entry was posted in School Reflection and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *