Wednesday, 18 October 2017

Must do's and Can Do's for reading

For Term 4 I am going to introduce to my readers a 'must do and can do' sheet.

The goals

  • Promote agency in my learners
  • Provide guidance for my learners so they know what to do, and how to prioritise their tasks in literacy
  • Allow learners to check off their reading tasks for the week
  • Give learners the chance to explore and use digital tools each week 

The intervention

I have introduced the must do and can do into their reading modelling book. It is a simple table divided into the tasks that they HAVE to do each week, and the tasks that they CAN do if they complete all the essential tasks. 

Must do's include essential practice I expect them to do each week such as activating prior knowledge, making predictions, reading their books, and completing their follow ups. Alongside this they have must do's for writing, such as completing their spelling in Explain Everything and completing the weekly writing task. 

Can do's include activities that help reinforce key knowledge and skills, such as using for vocabulary and Intothebook for summarising and inferring. Learners are able to choose any activity. 


After one week, it has been amazing to see how agentic learners are being when using this tool. Even my year two learners are finding this tool really helpful, saying they really enjoy highlighting off each task as they complete it. While my modelling book was always sequential, without the checklist learners were often asking me "What's next Mr Lunn" or "I've read my books what do I do now".

I have definitely noticed a decrease in the amount of learners approaching me for what to do next. It's also motivating for the learners because the things in the 'Can Do's are engaging and enjoyable for them - they want to complete their essential tasks so they can go on Kiwikidsnews or have some time on Core5. 

I look forward to making adjustments as the term goes on and I see other opportunities for things I can add in to each list. 

Credit to +Gina Harduar from Stonefields School, as the list is based on the great work in her literacy program. 

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