Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Building Our Stamina Through Choice

When we were building our stamina with Read to Self I was very worried about my class because it seemed our stamina would not go up! I added Work on Writing before we were probably truly ready for it (if you use the "8 minutes of stamina in one activity means you're ready for a new activity" rule).

What I found was that my students were highly motivated by the choice and that our stamina has continued to grow with the more choices they have. They now can pick between Read to Self, Work on Writing and Word Work (right now, they do all 3 everyday). In word work they can write their words on a whiteboard, make their words with bendaroos or make their words with reading rod letters.

When I first introduced Word Work our stamina was around 5 to 8 minutes depending on the day. Today we did 3 rounds of at least 12 minutes each!!!

One thing I've done with my barometer children is to give them a timer, but also to give them a sheet that has a simple 2 row table with the numbers 1-16 at the top. They flip the sand timer over, read/write/work the whole time the timer goes, and when the sand runs out they put a check under 1. They repeat the process the whole time that we are working. This really helped a couple of friends who were struggling with their stamina.

A student using timer and personal stamina graph!

Here are the personal stamina graphs!


  1. I like the personal stamina graphs a lot. I think I will try this out and adapt it for a couple of students in my room!