Saturday, May 28, 2011

Literature Circles


What IS a lit. circle? According to Harvey Daniels' definition: "Literature circles are small, temporary discussion groups who have chosen to read the same story, poem, article, or book...[E]ach member prepares to take specific responsibilities in the upcoming discussion, and everyone comes to the group with the notes needed to help perform that job" (13).

I have always been interested in Literature Circles in the classroom. Over the years I have made attempts to introduce it into my classroom curriculum. The major struggle has been the required curriculum and the focus on basal and directed reading to meet the demands of NCLB and AYP.      However with the advent of Common Core I have a renewed interest in Literature Circle.This year after our state testing was done I introduced Literature Circles to my students. THEY LOVE IT!!
The students can not wait to get into their groups for reading and discussion. I am amazed at how intelligent the conversations are and when I visit the groups they are animated and ready to tell me what they have read, discuss the characters, and show connections between the world, text, and themselves.
Harvey Daniels is the original creator of Literature Circles and here is a link to the research that supports Literature Circles in the classroom http://www.literaturecircles.com/research.htm.
The following websites have resources that support Literature Circles:
Brent Coley:  http://www.mrcoley.com/litcircles.htm
Laura Candler: http://www.lauracandler.com/strategies/litcircles.php
Instructional Strategies for Literature Circles

IPAD Literature Circles