Success Builders: The Daily 5

Success Builders: The Daily 5
Posted on 12/02/2016
Daily 5

A new framework for teaching literacy called the "Daily 5" is transforming elementary classrooms in Pickens County.


"Students choose what they will read, where they will read or write, and when they want to read or write.  Yet, by the end of the week, they have incorporated the entire framework into their schedule including a multitude of skills along the way," said Sheila Beasley, a second grade teacher at East End.

ListeningDuring the school day, students are given a choice between five tasks to develop their reading and writing skills: Read to Self , Work on Writing, Read to Someone, Listen to Reading, and Word Work.


For Beasley, an 18-year teaching veteran at East End Elementary, the classroom transformation was literal. "I redecorated my classroom over the summer so that each wall is a resource for my students," she said.


The Daily 5 framework is backed by strong research from use in classrooms in the U.S. and internationally. It works across grade levels and across different levels of proficiency.


ReadingFor example, a typical Tuesday morning in Carla Alexander's 5th grade classroom at Pickens Elementary may look like this: a boy studies a history text that interests him for Read to Self. At another table, a girl will write a summary of a book she read the day before to Work on Writing. In a cozy chair at the other side of the room, two girls Read to Someone from a storybook, building a friendship and their love for reading. Meanwhile, Mrs. Alexander meets with a group of four students for an in-depth discussion of the day's lesson.


The scene in other classrooms at other grade levels is similar, with each student matched to material appropriate for his or her learning levels. The framework is new to Pickens County, but the content is tried and true.


Friends"What I love about Daily 5 is that it is not another program but rather a structure that allows for differentiated instruction, which is crucial to meeting the needs of every student in my class," said Lisa Patterson, a kindergarten teacher at Chastain Road Elementary School.  "Choice is highly motivating to my students and it is one of the cornerstones of Daily 5," said Sarah Limbaugh, a first grade teacher at Liberty Elementary School. "It's meaningful learning with a mutual respect and trust between the teacher and students."


Students are encouraged to rotate through the five tasks throughout the week in order to round out their learning experience. The time students spend working on their Daily 5 tasks also creates a valuable opportunity for the teacher to work with small groups.


"I gain more opportunities to meet with every student for accountability," Beasley said. "It is a happy journey!"