Having students create their own poetry notebooks is a fun way for them to practice reading fluently and accurately.  This post incorporates many pictures on how to get one started in your classroom!
Poetry is a wonderful way for students to build fluency and accuracy while reading.  I was a little upset when they pulled it out of our second grade curriculum.  I knew I wanted to incorporate it into our classroom, even if I wasn't explicitly teaching it to my students.

I decided to have my students create poetry notebooks.  Each week they would receive a new poem to add to their notebook and by the end of the year, they had quite a collection!
Having students create their own poetry notebooks is a fun way for them to practice reading fluently and accurately.  This post incorporates many pictures on how to get one started in your classroom!
On Monday, I would read the poem out loud to my students during our morning meeting.  We would discuss any unknown words or literary devices that were used in the poem (in this case - onomatopoeia).  Oftentimes we would talk about the sensory details that the poem depicted.
Having students create their own poetry notebooks is a fun way for them to practice reading fluently and accurately.  This post incorporates many pictures on how to get one started in your classroom!
The students would then get their own copy to put into their poetry notebook.  I would give them about 5 minutes to color in the pictures on their poem to give it a sense of personalization.
Having students create their own poetry notebooks is a fun way for them to practice reading fluently and accurately.  This post incorporates many pictures on how to get one started in your classroom!
We would practice reading the poem together every day during morning meeting.  This helped the students to not only be able to read all the words, but to get a sense of the flow of the poem as well.

Their poetry notebook was kept in their book bag.  At any time during Reader's Workshop, they were able to pull out the notebook and practice the poems that we had collected.
Having students create their own poetry notebooks is a fun way for them to practice reading fluently and accurately.  This post incorporates many pictures on how to get one started in your classroom!
This was a great resource for them, especially if they were at the "read to a partner" station.  Each partner had their own copy of the poems and they could read them together or take turns.
Having students create their own poetry notebooks is a fun way for them to practice reading fluently and accurately.  This post incorporates many pictures on how to get one started in your classroom!
There were times when I would also have the students pull out their poetry notebooks when they were meeting with me.  This often depended on what I was working on with a particular group or if I saw that certain students were struggling with a poem.

I chose poems in a variety of ways.  I liked to choose ones that went along with the current season or holiday.  Other times, I would select poems that went along with a particular skill that we were learning in Reader's Workshop.

When I did teach poetry, I liked to hang these fun posters in the classroom for students to reference as we created poetry journals with our own work.
Having students create their own poetry notebooks is a fun way for them to practice reading fluently and accurately.  This post incorporates many pictures on how to get one started in your classroom!

Having students create their own poetry notebooks is a fun way for them to practice reading fluently and accurately.  This post incorporates many pictures on how to get one started in your classroom!
Since April is Poetry Month, I've added quite a few poetry resources to my "Think Spring" pinterest board - check it out!

Many of my fondest memories of elementary school occurred in my fifth grade classroom.  Not only did my teacher constantly expect our best effort, but she made learning fun.  When I was moved to fifth grade a few years ago, my goal was to emulate her teaching strategies.  Not a day goes by where I don't think back to how I felt as a student in that classroom and how I want my students to feel - engaged, yet challenged.

One activity that stands out was her read-aloud of The Westing Game.  Quickly, this novel became one of my all-time favorite books.  I knew that I HAD to teach it in my own classroom.  Thanks to Scholastic's Dollar Deals, I quickly acquired a class set of novels and we got right to work.
The Westing Game is a wonderfully intriguing mystery and a great novel study for upper elementary and middle school students.  This blog post is chock full of ideas, activities and lesson plans to bring this book to life in your classroom!
There are a lot of characters in this book (over 20!), so it's important that we keep track of them.  We put all their names into a bucket and each student draws one name (if I have more students in my class, a couple of them will double up).
The Westing Game is a wonderfully intriguing mystery and a great novel study for upper elementary and middle school students.  This blog post is chock full of ideas, activities and lesson plans to bring this book to life in your classroom!
They are then in charge of that character throughout the novel.  They keep track of that character's personality traits, behaviors and possible motives.  After each chapter the students report to the rest of the class what they have discovered about their assigned character and adds notes to the character chart.
The Westing Game is a wonderfully intriguing mystery and a great novel study for upper elementary and middle school students.  This blog post is chock full of ideas, activities and lesson plans to bring this book to life in your classroom!
We also keep track of the characters in our Detective Case Files.  In this file, we have a layout of the apartment building where the novel takes place (this is crucial to the story), as well as character notes.  The students can also use this file to take notes on each chapter.
The Westing Game is a wonderfully intriguing mystery and a great novel study for upper elementary and middle school students.  This blog post is chock full of ideas, activities and lesson plans to bring this book to life in your classroom!

The Westing Game is a wonderfully intriguing mystery and a great novel study for upper elementary and middle school students.  This blog post is chock full of ideas, activities and lesson plans to bring this book to life in your classroom!
An extra activity that the students are allowed to do (on their own time), is to create character trading cards.  These are so much fun to make!  The students write down important information about each character on the back of the card and sketch a picture on the front.  Side Note: these drawings came from MClaSSy on TpT.  I have the students draw their own characters.
The Westing Game is a wonderfully intriguing mystery and a great novel study for upper elementary and middle school students.  This blog post is chock full of ideas, activities and lesson plans to bring this book to life in your classroom!
As we move into the novel, the students begin to play "The Westing Game" along with the characters.  They each receive a $10,000 check just as the heirs do and, based on their excitement level, you would think it was real money!
The Westing Game is a wonderfully intriguing mystery and a great novel study for upper elementary and middle school students.  This blog post is chock full of ideas, activities and lesson plans to bring this book to life in your classroom!
The students also receive all the clues as they are revealed in the novel.  I print them on different colored paper, so that the students can keep track of which clues belong to which set of pairs.  This is their absolute favorite part. 
The Westing Game is a wonderfully intriguing mystery and a great novel study for upper elementary and middle school students.  This blog post is chock full of ideas, activities and lesson plans to bring this book to life in your classroom!
Whenever they finish their work, they are allowed to pull out their clues to try to figure out what the answer to the mystery is.  I have to say, it's my favorite part too!  It's amazing to watch their minds work and hear their predictions.  It is definitely a thinking-outside-the-box moment for my students.
The Westing Game is a wonderfully intriguing mystery and a great novel study for upper elementary and middle school students.  This blog post is chock full of ideas, activities and lesson plans to bring this book to life in your classroom!
The students also have a comprehension packet to complete as they read the story.  We use this as a basis for our class discussions after each chapter.  Oftentimes, I let them read and complete the packet in partners because I find that they get so much more out of the book when they are able to talk about it with someone else.  They are also required to look up some of the vocab words from each chapter.
The Westing Game is a wonderfully intriguing mystery and a great novel study for upper elementary and middle school students.  This blog post is chock full of ideas, activities and lesson plans to bring this book to life in your classroom!
As I mentioned before, there is a LOT that happens in the book.  And sometimes even I get a tad confused!  To alleviate that, I keep a file of all my own notes.  I use this just as a quick reference for myself, since I would rather let the students lead a discussion to share what they find to be important to the plot of the story.  In my binder, I keep my chapter notes, a chart of all the partners and their clues, notes on each character and an answer key to the student comprehension questions as well as the vocab definitions.
The Westing Game is a wonderfully intriguing mystery and a great novel study for upper elementary and middle school students.  This blog post is chock full of ideas, activities and lesson plans to bring this book to life in your classroom!
My enthusiasm for this book is unrivaled and I think my students can tell.  They get so into it every year and I love being able to bring it alive for them.  When we use this novel, I feel as though I can see the wheels inside their heads turning as they are trying to figure out the mystery.  It also creates amazing conversations and debates among my students.  I highly recommend bringing this book into your classroom!
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