I use DRA (developmental reading assessment) levels to allow students to choose their “Just Right Books”. They are able to choose from the bucket at their level when they choose shopping during Daily 5.
DRA Just Right Books Tubs
I also have the students choose a few “Free Choice” books by genre. Here is how I organize these books.
Free choice books
I use pictures and words to show the students the genres, I change out the buckets every quarter with new genres. I have 8 different genres out at one time.
I use Velcro to stick each label on.
How I label The DRA level on books
Have you filled a bucket today? Source
This amazing book by Carrol McCloud is the bases for my entire social skills curriculum. I read this story all throughout the year, especially after winter and spring break. It shows that every person in the world has an invisible bucket, that you can fill by doing and saying kind things. And by filling others buckets, you are filling your own. It’s a brilliant way to make the golden rule concrete. It’s amazing the change that I see in my students after completing a lesson on this book.
We don’t just read it, and put it back on the shelf. We live this book. I make each student a bucket of their own, then I copy bucket fillers in various rainbow colors. During our Daily 5, if a student chooses writers workshop “filling buckets” is one activity they can do.
How To: To make these buckets I took milk cartoons from the students lunch, cut the tops off, and washed them out. Then I drew buckets onto various colors of card-stock paper, cut them out then stapled them to the milk cartons. The bucket filler sheet can be found here. I copied those on to rainbow colored copy paper, and cut them out. I always have lots of “bucket fillers” ready so kids can fill lost of their friends buckets.
I always make sure that I give examples of how you can fill someones bucket. We start the beginning of the year out by me asking them to write at least one detail to fill a students bucket, by January I ask them to write at least 3 details onto the bucket filler paper.
Cute SchoolTube bucket filler video.