Now, this is something that you can do very simply with a sheet of paper and a pencil. Have them create a chart to sort for basic sound patterns in the text. In a Short A text, consider sorting by ending sounds: -an, -ag, -at.
Here's an example of a sheet that I made for my learners, but it could be easily recreated simply with lined paper and put into a page protector. I use these types of sheets within a page protector to save on copies! :)
Want to differentiate in a different way?
Have your students draw a picture of a word that follows the pattern in their story and then write additional words from the pattern. Again...this can be done just on a regular sheet of paper, or even in a phonics or writer's journal. I taught explicit phonics lessons even in third grade! :) The patterns are more complex, and the exceptions to the rule become more common, but being a great decoder never gets old.
I love to let my kids choose their partners, but sometimes, I need to choose for them because I want to ensure that the students are working towards mastery rather than just 'hanging out' with a friend during their independent reading time. Sometimes, I will just split my class in half...high readers on one side, lows on the other and say...go find a buddy from the other side of the room to read the story with. The kids have responded well to reading with someone that they are sure can help them...but also the kids who are stronger readers love to be in a position to BE a help! I have worked very hard to create a classroom climate of inclusion and support...so, this method does not seem out of place to my students and it is welcomed.
She created these Bloom's Buttons that help me to make SURE that I am asking different styles of questions in each lesson. Because I model this daily, my students have now adapted to this in the classroom as well! :) For more established readers they can move from just the oral component to a written response. Consider asking an open ended question for students to consider and respond to in a journal for a paper saving measure. In my classroom, I sometimes use open ended recording sheets like the one pictured below to get a feel for what my students are taking out of their reading.
|Interested in my sorts and recording sheets for short sounds? Check them out on TPT here.|
Not every student is able to share at the same level...so, I try to offer the students multiple ways to share some of the same information. This style of differentiation can work throughout the year as I'm trying to hit different writing goals as well!
Are you a fan of task cards? My friend Leigh has some task card response sheets that would be really easy to implement...especially with second and third graders. The great thing about task cards is that you can make them say whatever you need them to for the purpose of your in class review! :)
|Leigh's Free Task Card RECORDING sheet|
Differentiation doesn't have to be hard when you have a set of decodables...or a set of decodable texts to use! :)