Literature Circles is an exciting reading program that allows students to take control of their own learning. In this program, the class is divided into reading groups, with each group consisting of four or five students. Each group then has the opportunity to select its own book to read, as well as the pace at which it wishes to read it (all under teacher supervision, of course). During the reading of their selected literature, students complete various "jobs" emphasizing skills such as high-level questioning, vocabulary development, and writing. Similar to a book club, students then get together for an opportunity to share their jobs and discuss the books they are reading. Here is some research on the effectiveness of Literature Circles, and teachers, here's a list of frequently asked questions I've received about Lit. Circles.
Literature Circle Jobs
Click on a job below to view a printable version of that job sheet.
Files are in "pdf" format and require the free Adobe Reader.
Students write high-level questions to be used during group discussion.
Students find and define unknown or interesting vocabulary words to share
with the group.
Students connect an event in the book to an event in their own life or that of someone
Students write a letter from one of the book's characters to another.
Students illustrate a scene from the book.
Students use this sheet to keep track of group assignments.