I am hoping to get some clarification with Launching Daily 5 in a 4th or 5th grade classroom. As I have read in the Daily 5 book, students in these grades typically do two rounds - Read to Self and Work on Writing. Of course there are exceptions - students who might need Word Work or Listen to Reading because of their unique needs. I also read in the new Daily 5 Essential Elements that students in grades 4-12 might participate in 1 - 5 tasks depending. So my question is…do you launch all 5 rounds even if the majority of your class will not be participating in them? Or can you just launch Work on Writing and Read to Self? I am worried that if you launch all 5 rounds, students will want to pick a round that they do not need (even though I know Read to Self and Work on Writing are non-negotiable).

Thanks for your support!





Cynthia Kiefer

Thank you for asking this question. I actually have the same question.


To give you the best possible response, I’ve sent your message along to Gail and Allison.
Here’s my thinking . . . I think it would be good to go ahead and launch the 5, perhaps “the other 3” in a less intense fashion. That way, for those students who need WW, R to Someone or LR, it will seem like it is part of the plan for the class, as needs be. Also, you won’t have to stop to intro the 3 after you get going.
I think it would be fine to say up front that all students are expected to do Read to Self and Writing every day, and that you will suggest the other 3 areas as needs arise from your conferring sessions. Those kiddos who need the other areas could still have choice in the order they do them.
What do you think?

Lillian Falk

I agree that it you should say that Read to Self and Work on Writing are daily expectations. I also see value in launching Read to Someone, Listen to Reading, and Word Work. The reading that I have done recently stresses that students need to have time talking or having dialogue about text. Read to Someone offers this opportunity to your students. Word Work allows students to work on vocabulary development and gives them time to process language that will be used in their writing. I am using Listen to Reading as a time where students listen to text for a different purpose or text that is complex. I have found that my students will listen to stories or poems with archaic language. After spending time listening, students are willing to read a books with archaic language. I believe that students need time to work in all 5 areas.


I love your point about “Listen to Reading”. Hearing different dialects would make the reading much easier on some wonderful stories.
Maybe for older students we could stress the dialogue piece of Check for Understanding during Read to Someone time.

Margaret Oevering

Hi, I have done a daily 3 with grade 5 (2 years) and a year of Daily 3 with grade 6. For grade 5 my 3 are read to self, read with someone and write - sometimes I would include word work or a specific science or social activity or fun brain game as part of the LA block. THe idea of choice for reading material can be powerful. I still chose what was read in my reading groups for at least 6 of the ten months. I read with my weaker students ( 2 groups) almost daily - various ways usually 1:1 within the reading group with a goal for their reading that day. My classes had several students working 1-3 grades below grade level so we spent much of Social and Science working with LA concepts too. I had a few favourite units from Scholastic (Canada) like their book clubs that allowed students to choose novels within their reading level, but all were mysteries or had a similar theme. I used some added novels that were at a gr 2-3 level since my class were developing readers. My stronger students, I read with once a week, sometimes more often. My one behaviour student, I had in two groups with me, because he really was off task and would interrupt others learning if unsupervised. usually I let home start independent reading for my first group and then the next two, he would be part of the reading group.
How I got 3 reading groups in along with mini lessons and some longer lessons was I would often have an independent Math centre/workstation or word work - I like Quizlet for vocabulary work. The best part is to start off and teach what a good fit book is and train students for independence (even though some like my behaviour student do not always comply). read with someone, was special, especially with with body cushions to sit on with that someone or IKEA chair tops (that students can rock on and have back support and not mark the floor ($10 each that have lasted a while - I have 6).
model well and get students trained. I like to train my kids to read for up to and hour for grade 5. GR 4 - probably less time.
Plan what you think is best for your school and adjust once you have students. the modelling and timing students and graphing endurance/stamina works well. I love doing the mini lessons. last year in grade 6 , my La looked much like daily 5 but we spent an hour/ day reading and I met with individual students rather than groups - it worked great and the students read and read and read with lots of mini lessons.
Just some ideas,

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