Miss Black's Second Grade Class
Blythe Academy of Languages
Greenville, South Carolina

Earlier in the school year, students learned how to meet in Literature Circles. Each student had a role, and as a class, we learned how to do each role. The Discussion Director leads the circle in their meeting in addition to doing one other literature role. Those roles include: the Inquiring Mind, the Creative Artist, the Word Detective, and the Connector. (Feel free to download and use these Microsoft word documents.)
For this internet project, I divided the students into groups of 4 or 5. Students read one of the pre-selected books from Marc Brown’s “Arthur” series. The titles we used were Arthur Meets the President, Arthur Lost and Found, Arthur Goes to Camp, Arthur’s Birthday, and Arthur’s Teacher Trouble. Reading levels were taken into account when I assigned the books, although the students were not grouped solely by their reading ability. Group dynamics and student interests were also a consideration. Students read their books in class and at home before we began working on our roles. The following day in class, I assigned each student a role, and most students completed their role sheets in class. Others finished them at home. The third day, students met with their circles to share their role sheets and to talk with their groups about the book. After they met in their Literature Circles, students completed a self-evaluation of their work in their Circle.

After meeting in Literature Circles, I shared several ideas for extension projects with the students, and I provided examples of each. Some ideas were board games, cd covers, story hats, accordion books, and story chains. I also presented the rubric for grading before the students began their projects. Students then chose one project for their extension project to use with their book. After selecting their project, they completed a planning page. Once I reviewed their plan, they began their projects on their own. We spent about 2 days in class working on the projects and 1 day sharing the projects and playing the games.

The students were very engaged in the entire Literature Circle process, and they gained a deeper understanding of their books as well as the importance of talking with others about literature. In the future, I will incorporate Literature Circles into our Language Arts program even more than I do now. They are an invaluable way of getting students interested and excited about reading!

Story Hat Examples

Board Game Example

CD Cover Examples

Story Chains

©  Susan Silverman - Literature Circles Extension Projects