Classroom Lesson Pacing

How can you incorporate our Engage Literacy program with your classroom? Here’s a sample guided reading lesson with ideas on how to use our literacy program with your entire class or small breakout groups. 

Whole class (I0 minutes)

Read to your students and/or share the Engage Literacy Oral Language Big Books, picture books, or serial reading. Ensure children are exposed to varied text types, for example, nonfiction informational, procedural text, transactional, description, discussion, explanation, exposition (persuasive/argument), recount, response, and narrative.

Discuss one or more of the following:

  • Purpose of the text—the audience the text is intended form, the author's intent, children's enjoyment of the text, what students learned, meaning of the text
  • Structure of the text—layout (ie picture storybook), text genre, labels, headings, language flow in text (ie rhyme, fairy tale), grammatical features (ie punctuation, graphophonic elements)
  • Visual literacy/elements of the text—illustrations, font

Whole class-strategy development (I0 minutes)

Teach a reading strategy to the class (model/demonstrate/discuss). The following strategies could be developed:

  • How to read different genres (rhymes, poems, nonfiction, procedural text)
  • Explore text conventions through making a class big book
  • Word development—brainstorm words, look at the structure of words, word meanings
  • Implement comprehension strategies and related comprehension skills 

Small-group activities (30-35 minutes)

Develop fluid, skill-based learning groups through the following activities:

Group 1
Teaching Group: students work with the teacher on a guided reading or reciprocal teaching activity using Engage Literacy fiction or nonfiction titles, or a title from the Engage Literacy Wonder Words.

Guided reading: introduce the book, walk through the text discussing pictures/keywords/text conventions, read text, discuss text.

Reciprocal teaching: predicting, clarifying, generating questions, summarizing.

Work with children for I0-15 minutes and have them complete one of the activities or Blackline Master tasks related to the text. Spend the remaining time in the lesson roving among the other groups, teaching and refining reading strategies that the children are using.

Groups 2 and 3 
Independent Reading Tasks: students work independently on tasks that help develop reading strategies (read silently, summarize texts, diary/journal writing, make up new titles for stories, supply an alternative ending).

These activities can be varied to suit the needs of each student: 

  • With a text the children have been reading, use the Teacher's Resource Guide suggested tasks and Blackline Masters as a guide
  • With a text the whole class has been listening to
  • With a 'stand-alone' reading activity that does not relate to a particular text

Note: Oral Language Big Books provide independent vocabulary development activities related to the scene. 

Group 4 
eBooks: students interact with Engage Literacy eBooks independently.

Whole-class sharing (5-I0 minutes)

Have students share the skills and discoveries they developed over the lesson through discussion/demonstration. Based on your observations during the lesson, teach or highlight a particular skill that would be beneficial to the children. 


Assessment needs to be ongoing and continuous in order to ascertain the changing developmental level of a child. Additional information that can be gathered to determine a child's level includes: anecdotal information, observations, oral reading records, and previously completed tasks.

Once a reading level has been established, place the child at the appropriate reading level. Each level matches the Engage Literacy color coding for easy reference. Oral reading records for each Engage Literacy text are provided in the Teacher's Resource.