Little Critter Workbooks Get Results!

bookI have found a magical teaching tool: Spectrum Publishing’s Little Critter Reading.  It’s a workbook with the perfect format: an engaging story based on the Little Critter books by Mercer Mayer, followed by a worksheet covering comprehension, phonics, and study skills.  Students beg to use it and groan when we put it away.

In my experience, Little Critter Reading improves a reader’s skills by a whole grade level.

You can buy Little Critter Reading at two levels: grade 1 and grade 2.  Grade 2 is appropriate for students in second and third grade.  Grade 1 helps students make the remarkable transformation from reading three sentences on a page to reading several paragraphs—in the space of one workbook.  Grade 1 is great for English Language Learners.

I recommend Little Critter Reading books for the classroom and for the home.  At home, a parent or older sibling can tutor a struggling reader with Little Critter Reading books.

How to use Little Critter Reading:

1.  Read the story to your students.  Very important—think how much better they can read if they already know what it sounds like!
2.  Let the student(s) read aloud with you.  This way, you’re pulling the student along and helping her experience fluency.  For the whole class, choral read the passage.
3.  If time and patience allow, the student can read the story aloud without your help.
4.  Do the worksheet that goes with the story.  You might have to teach a mini lesson on topics such as root words, ABC order, verb tense, etc.  Kids quickly catch on and complete the lesson easily.
5.  Review the lesson.

One caveat: you are not supposed to photocopy Little Critter Reading workbooks.  I applied for a grant and bought a class set of the workbook.  I use it with my third graders at the beginning of the year.  We put a page protector over the worksheet page and write on the page protector with an Expo marker.  We erase with old socks.

Students who behave well get to draw on the page protector for two minutes!

Seriously, I can’t recommend Little Critter Reading highly enough.


 

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