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The purpose of this activity is

1. to introduce you to Readers theatre as an extension of literature circle


2. to help you promote your book to other colleagues and teach your students to do the
same
3. to create an opportunity for your book club to consider and discuss the inseparable
connections across spoken, written and read words and to develop strategies for
helping your own students to recognize and make use of these connections to enhance
their literacy strengths and to build up those areas they have less confidence and
experience with.
4. to connect fun and playfulness with purposeful activity.

Step one
Check out the following sites in order to develop an idea of what you’re about to do and why.
Book mark them if they work for you and if you find other, better ones, send them to Glynis to
put on Moodle for everyone.

http://www.aaronshep.com/rt/Tips2.html

http://readerstheatredigest.com/

http://www.jalt-publications.org/tlt/articles/1999/10/massey

http://www.stemnet.nf.ca/CITE/langrt.htm

http://www.readwritethink.org/lessons/lesson_view.asp?id=199

http://cosee-central-gom.org/ovweb/ships%20and%20shipping/readersrubric1.html ( this
one’s an assessment rubric and you can do a whole lot better but it’s a start)

http://forpd.ucf.edu/strategies/RT.self.assessment.pdf (likewise this- only it’s for self


assessment)

“Educators have long elaborated on the benefits of using Readers Theatre and related
strategies for increasing reading fluency and sight-word vocabulary, improving reading
comprehension, providing opportunities to interpret dialogue and communicate meaning, and
increasing awareness and appreciation of plays as a form of literature. For example, Harris and
Sipay (1990) describe script reading as one of the most interesting oral reading activities for
children, and Coody (1992) notes that script reading provides a context for purposeful reading.
Through this interactive activity the students are energized, actively involved in responding to
and interpreting literature (Sebesta, 1997). Readers Theatre reinforces the social nature of
reading (Busching, 1981) and provides an opportunity for students of varying abilities to work
as a team in a cooperative learning environment (Flood, Lapp, Flood, & Nagel, 1992; Trousdale
& Harris, 1993). Because implementation includes many readings of the script, Readers Theatre
promotes oral reading fluency (Carrick, 2000; Millin, 1996) and enhances students’ ability to
understand and transform text (Stayter & Allington, 1991).”
http://www.readingonline.org/electronic/carrick/

Step two

Choose a section from your book that meets the following criteria:

 it’s a pivotal and dramatic section


 it allows for every group member to contribute in a central way
 it does not need background information to make sense to an audience who is
unfamiliar with it
 it gives us insight into the motivations and aspirations of the central characters
 it challenges us to think
 it can be read as a script in under five minutes

Step three
Using the rule that you can leave things out but cannot add anything, turn the selection you
have chosen into a script. In all cases, the nature of the books you are reading requires
sensitivity and cultural awareness as you work the piece you’ve chosen into a performance
piece. Talk explicitly to each other about those issues in the text that only become apparent
and awkward when they are no longer written and read but spoken. Consider how you will hel
your students to hold the same kind of critical conversations and to reconcile their concerns
respectfully and honestly.

Step four

Select roles and rehearse!

Step five

Perform