Monday, November 19, 2012

HST+: Using Library and Reading Log with Guided Reading

I've started to use HST to track the reading levels for the books in my collection. I use the Guided Reading scale, but you can do it with any scale you like. I like guided reading because the letters (A-Z) aren't easily confused with actual grade levels (except for K and maybe P).

Here's how I've been doing it:

First, I enter a new Library Record using the ISBN. I also lookup the level of the title, usually using Scholastic BookWizard. I enter the level in the "Grade Level" field. This way, that info shows up in both the Resource tab and the Reading Log tab. You could also put it in "Custom," but it won't display in the Resource or Reading Log tabs.

Next, I evaluate my student's reading level. You can figure out the level of books they read on their own, or use a tool like this one . I found this picks their "Instructional" level, not their "Independant" level, so keep that in mind. You could also do a benchmark assessment, or hire a reading specialist to do one for you.

Finally, I sort the Library tab by Grade Level and right click and "Create Reading Log item" to assign the book to a particular student.

Using this software, I can assign either independant reading or instructional (with me) reading for each student that's tailored to their reading level, and to my book collection.  I don't have to maintain sorted bins of leveled books, and I can continue to use the shelving system I already set up.