Monday, May 6, 2013

Summer Reading Response Journal - Using Blooms Revised Taxonomy

Responding To Text, Common Core, Journal, Summer Reading, Blooms Revised Taxonomy, Questioning, Creativity, Responding to Text, Informational Text.
You know how some things just come about by accident? Well that is how my Responding to Text Journal came about. I knew I needed some way for my students to record their thoughts about their independent reading. I have used index cards for each chapter and just writing in a composition book. Those were all okay, but the index cards got lost and we have so many of the marbled composition books that I knew I needed a change. That's how I came up with this journal.

The Responding To Text Journal is 24 pages. Easy to use, I just printed, then copied front to back and stapled in the middle. There it was, a great little journal that my students can take home with them over a break or use in class and home. I used these little gems the past few weeks while I was pulling students back for some Intensive Care in reading! We had been reading the book, The City of Ember for silent reading time. As I was pulling students that needed help I gave this journal to my other students. These are 4th graders who are somewhat higher leveled thinkers and need rigor and challenge. They also love to color as you can see from the cover.

Many times my students ask me if they can color while they are thinking of what to write. I usually do not let them color until they have written something in their journals. If you are a good writer though, processing and thinking time is imperative. 

The inside page is easy peazy though! They do have to write when they started the book, how many pages and chapters the book has, and other important information. This book has a higher Lexile level than I usually allow for silent reading, but we are going to read along with the Audio which will help with their understanding.

On each page students have to answer one of the questions in each box that relates to one of the Blooms Revised Taxonomy levels. This was hard for a few of my students and I let them draw their answers out. At the top they write the chapter they are referring to and the pages. Some books, like the Mary Pope Osborne Magic Tree House books, the chapters are short so they would write the page numbers and spend more time with each chapter.

I did some spot checking and asked Why? on a few pages so they would give me more details. This is a learning process though and takes some students longer than others. I do think this will be a good way to have students think about their reading. It doesn't take long, the graphics are cute, and they have a choice of questions.

To keep my students from getting too bored or tired of 'thinking,' I made some graphic type pages where they can have some creative thinking time and draw and design. All in all, my students are enjoying this journal. I think this will be great for over the summer when I want them to read some of the Battle of the Book books or any of the books that are recommended for summer reading.

This journal is on sale in my Teachers Pay Teachers store, Pam-Dalessandro. There is a huge Teacher Appreciation Sale for May 7 and 8th! 28% off in my store and a lot of other stores on the site. 

Thanks as always for viewing my blog and looking at what is going on in my classroom.
I am hoping to change grade levels next year. I have taught all grades, except 6th, so am anxious to see where I will be placed. AIG students are wonderful and I have enjoyed this year. It hasn't been easy teaching 4th and 5th grades with a 3rd grade pull in. I want to concentrate on one grade level again, I think that is enough for any of us!

Good luck to everyone on their EOGs and have a wonderful Teacher Appreciation Week!


  1. You did it again Pam! This is so nicely created and useful! I am going to see if we have this book in our book room so we can follow in your class' footsteps! Great job always!!!!!

  2. Thanks so much Joanne. I actually had to buy the audio for my ESL students. The book is great, but for some reason my ESL students had a hard time understanding what the characters were thinking. The audio helped them as they read. I have a gift to send you! Check your email! Pam

  3. Fun way for kids to respond to their reading! Your kiddos are lucky!

  4. Thanks Loreen Leedy! I purchased the cutest item of yours today. The MOM and Father's Day Symmetry package on TPT. My students had the best time with the symmetry. I haven't purchased your book but plan to. I would like to write a Donors Choose Proposal for all your books! I have some pictures that I'll put up of their finished MOM's Day activities. Pam

  5. I'm looking forward to seeing your photos! I've heard of the Donors Choose...that sounds like a good idea.

  6. Pam-I found your blog on the TPT forum, and I love this response journal. What a great way to keep your kids engaged during novel reading...but in a different way than a bunch of questions. I bet the kids loved illustrating.

  7. Oops...meant to give you my blog address

  8. Carla, thank you for your kind comments! I will be visiting you in a few minutes! Comprehension Connection sounds like a place I need to visit!
    I had to figure out a way to get my students to give responses to what they were reading in a way that would keep them engaged. I think this does the trick for most of my students. I tell them it is okay to draw a picture with some of the responses if they get "stuck" and can't think of what they want to say. They also love to color and I think they are "thinking about their thinking" while they are coloring the graphics. Most of my soon to be 5th graders took this journal home with a Battle of the Book book to complete over the summer. I'll see how they do without my checking their work every day! I am hopping over to your blog! Pam