We love the practice of introducing texts, topics, authors, and genres to students by reading the first chapter aloud. First Chapter Fridays are a wonderful opportunity to end the week with reading joy. It’s also a strategy that, when planned with intention, can support most aspects of the curriculum. This post is part of a series that will introduce ideas for leveling up your First Chapter Fridays without diminishing its central purpose of engaging readers. Read the previous post on Supporting Fluency with First Chapter Fridays.
Vocabulary is fundamental to reading comprehension. We learn the meanings of words indirectly through oral and written language and from direct instruction.
Here are some suggestions for supporting vocabulary with First Chapter Fridays:
- Preteach some vocabulary words that are essential to students’ comprehension of the chapter by.
- While reading, stop and model your use of vocabulary strategies to solve unknown words.
- Use a Knowledge Rating Guide or a Vocabulary Prediction Chart for complex vocabulary in the chapter.
- Revisit portions of the text in a targeted vocabulary mini-lesson. Possible areas of focus include how morphology affects meanings of words, use of contextual clues for solving unknown vocabulary words, figurative language, and shades of meaning.
- Select a short passage and ask students to identify which word they think is most important and then discuss their choices in small groups.
- Invite students to select a word from the text to add to their Language Field Guides.