Guided Reading: The Ins and Outs

Guided Reading

Guided reading is one of my absolute favorite times of the day! I love that students are broken into groups, working at their level, being independent, and getting the individualized attention that they need.

The Curriculum

My school uses the Fountas and Pinnel program for guided reading, but there are many programs out there, including some on teacherspayteachers. The program I have includes different leveled books from A – E (because I teach kinder) and an easy way to assess what level students are at.

Guided Reading

Read about how I set up my guided reading groups here.


I incorporate my guided reading lessons into our literacy center time. During centers, two groups meet with teachers (I have a full-time assistant teacher), one group does word work, one group does listen to reading and sometimes I have groups working at our sand table. Other center ideas I’ve used are work on writing, read to self and read to someone.

Guided Reading Literacy Center Template

Check out my literacy center calendar template here!


  1. Guided Reading (Leveled Groups)
  2. Word Work – I have a variety of centers that students can complete during word work. In the beginning of the year, we focus on letter recognition and letter sounds. Once we hit about October, students are working on sight words. During the second half of the year, we transition from sight words to spelling words.
  3. Listen to Reading – I use a program on the iPads called Raz-Kids. This program is awesome because you can put in students’ reading levels. It also has an option to read the story to them or for them to read it to themselves. As the story reads to them, it highlights the word, giving the student more exposure to sight words.
  4. Sand table – Students complete different activities sorting through the sand looking for either letters or words.

Guided Reading Lesson Plan Template

Guided Reading Lessons

  • Before Reading – I use this time to introduce sight words that will be in the story and any vocabulary that students might not know.
  • During Reading – I have students read all at the same time but not together. (This will take some practice and time to get used to.) As they’re reading, I listen to each student and make any notes on the recording sheet. I make note of their fluency, accuracy and anything else that might come up as they’re reading.
  • After Reading – Once students have read through the book multiple times, I stop them and we discuss the book. I ask them comprehension questions such as recalling what happened, why something happened and any connections they have to the story.
  • Once our guided reading time is over, students put their books in their book bags and pick a sticker for their sticker book. They can read the books in their book bags during read to self or read to someone.

Be sure to check out my guided reading lesson plan template here!


Click the picture to check out this guided reading bundle!

Guided Reading Bundle

You might also be interested in reading about how I create my guided reading caddie and what I keep in it!


Guided Reading

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