“Rain, Rain, Go Away” ~ Shared Reading Poetry

Shared reading is a POWERFUL tool for emergent readers. Not only is it very engaging, but so much learning can happen in a short amount of time. Check out this post where I go into greater detail about what  Shared Reading Poetry is and an overview of how I use it in my kindergarten classroom. 

At the beginning of the kindergarten year we do a lot of work around learning each other’s names. After that, for the next four weeks we use fun song-poems where we incorporate the students’ names into the poems we learn. The kids absolutely LOVE it and go crazy when they see their name in the poem.

 

Following “Who Stole the cookies?” poem, I then introduce the song “Rain, Rain, Go Away” but alter it so that we insert students’ names into the song. Because this song is familiar, the children feel extra confident and excited to engage. We use this one poem throughout the entire week, emphasizing different teaching points on each day.  

Below is the lesson plan format I use for every poem we do in shared reading.

Lesson plans for Day 1

Location for lesson: Whole Group on Carpet

On the first day, I introduce the poem by teaching the chant and hand motions. We sing this chant together as I insert different student names into the poem. I first hold up a name and have the students read it aloud together. Then I put it in the poem and we chant it together. We do this several times  and I try to use everyone’s name at least once on the first day.

Watch this video below where I demonstrate the hand motions and how we sing/chant this song.

Side note: Using songs and chants when possible is a powerful learning practice because the rhythm and melodies help engage the learner more deeply. In addition to this, incorporating movement, hand or body motions that go along with the chant or song, is also a very powerful learning tool. There is a lot of research that supports increased learning when using movement and song/chants.

Lesson plans for Day 2

Location for lesson: Whole Group on Carpet

On the second day, we review the poem a few times, switching out about 3-4 names to warm up. This time, I point crisply under the words while the students chant the words. I also emphasize by promptings, “When we start reading the words, we always start here” and I point to the top left corner at the beginning of the poem. We are building those early literacy behaviors. 

Location for lesson: Individual practice at tables

After our carpet time, I have the students transition to their seats for poetry journal work. Students open up to the next fresh clean page in their book (not a random page in the middle, you will need to check for this in kindergarten. Haha!). Students will glue down the poem on the page, write their name in the blank, and then hold their pencil in the air to show they are ready to move on. Tip: If students struggle to write their names, use a highlighter to write their name and then have them trace over it.

Once the poem is glued into their journals and they’ve written their name, students use the back of their pencil as a pointer stick. I tell them, “Point to where we start reading the words.” I have students hold it while I circulate to check and help students as needed. Then together we chant the poem while students approximate the words. At this point, I do not expect them to point accurately to each word, just approximatly. 

Side note: Because this is the first time I’m introducing their poetry journals to them, I plan to take more time than usual to demonstrate and explain procedures.

Lesson plans for Day 3

Location for lesson: Whole Group on Carpet

On the third day, we review the poem a few times again, switching out about 3-4 names to warm up. I continue to point crisply under the words while the students chant the words. I also emphasize by prompting, “When I get to the end of this line, I sweep back to the next line and continue reading.” Here I demonstrate the “return sweep,” showing how we go back down to the next line when reading. 

After we practice the poem a few times, we then do a sight word hunt. I write the sight word in focus on a mini white board, then hold it up and say “This is the word ‘the’, say ‘the’. Raise your hand if you see the word ‘the’ in the poem. I then call on a student to come up and slide the highlighter over the word.

Sight words we find in “Rain, Rain, Go Away”:

        • go
        • to
        • little

Lesson plans for Day 4

Location for lesson: Whole Group on Carpet

On the fourth day, we review the poem a few times again, switching out about 3-4 names to warm up. I continue to point crisply under the words while the students chant the words. This time we review the sight words we found the day before. 

Location for lesson: Individual practice at tables

Then, students get their poetry journals, open up to the poem, and hold a red crayon in the air to show me they are ready to go. I then write the first sight word on my mini white board, hold it up and ask the students to call out and read it together. Then they find the word in the poem and highlight it. Once they’ve found all of them in the poem, they hold up an orange crayon (we go in the order of the colors of the rainbow). I will then repeat this until we find all the sight words in focus in the poem. 

Lesson plans for Day 5

(Optional)

Location for lesson: Individual practice at tables

On the fifth day, I distribute the poem booklets. We will read the poem together, turning the pages and trying to point to the words as we read. Students will again insert their name on the blank and then draw a picture of themselves in the box (see picture below). Students may then color their booklets and read with a buddy next to them. 

I know your students will enjoy it as much as mine do. Happy teaching! 

Love,

Mrs. Young

“Doing little things with great love!” 

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