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Guided Reading 101 (K-5)

Is the push for individualized differentiated instruction making it difficult for you to address the various learning needs and ability levels of your students during your reading block? Perhaps you feel frustrated because "teaching in the middle" seems to alienate a whole spectrum of learners? Guided reading is a way in which teachers can guide their students throughout the entire reading process, in a targeted and personalized manner. This online course is designed for K-5 teachers who wish to explore the guided reading strategy in detail. Teachers will be introduced to the basic framework of guided reading and will learn a variety of strategies to meet all their students' needs in the building block areas of phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension. Teachers will learn about the importance of using data to find their students' reading levels and how to determine the readability of leveled text so students can be appropriately matched to high-interest books. The course takes teachers through the entire process of guided reading. Additional topics include how to organize a shared guided reading library, how to incorporate writing into the guided reading framework, and how to further differentiate for English language learners. This course is worth 3 ⅓ semester units/5 quarter units from UC San Diego Extension. For detailed information on university credit, click here.

"The information in each unit was extremely helpful! It was organized very well and very clearly! I learned so many wonderful ideas that I feel I can immediately apply to my teaching!" - Lisa Forschner


Enrollment Options

Register] Course Registration Only $120 with the discount

Register]Course Plus Credit from UC San Diego Extension Only $304


Required Resource Book: This course has a modestly-priced required resource book (available in both new and used versions) that can be purchased through Amazon using the following link. Note that you can begin and participate in your course before the book arrives.

Who's Doing the Work? How to Say Less so Readers Can Do More” by Jan Burkins and Kim Yaris

If you are registering for multiple courses, use the following link to access the book list for all PDI courses with direct purchase links through Amazon. PDI Course Resource Book List


Topical Outline / Click here to request a copy of the detailed syllabus

PDI Course Number: 112T02

UCSD Course Number: EDUC40264

Unit One

  • Introduction to Guided Reading
  • Elements of Guided Reading
  • Benefits of Guided Reading
  • Assignment #1: Write an autobiography
  • Test #1

Unit Two

  • Guided Reading Text Gradients
  • Finding Student Reading Levels
  • Data-Driven Decision Making
  • Using High-Interest Leveled Texts
  • Assignment #2: Article reflection
  • Test #2

Unit Three

  • The Guided Reading Lesson
  • Before, During, and After Reading Activities
  • Guided Reading in Action
  • Assignment #3: Share your expertise
  • Test #3

Unit Four

  • The Building Blocks of Effective Reading Instruction
  • Focus on Comprehension
  • Test #4

Unit Five

  • Guided Reading Within the 90-Minute Reading Block
  • Organizing the Guided Reading Classroom
  • Organizing the Shared Guided Reading Library
  • Test #5

Unit Six

  • Incorporating Writing into the Guided Reading Framework
  • Working with English Language Learners During Guided Reading
  • Extended Guided Reading
  • Assignment #4: Create Guided Reading Lessons
  • Assignment #5: Reading/Learning Log (Based on required resource book)