Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Work Station Wednesday: What is the difference between work station and literacy center?

So, I can just say that not even all the way into the first chapter of Debbie Diller's Literacy Work Station book and I'm already altering what I'm doing in the fall. I got to page 5 and had to jump on here to start this post!

What is a work station?

It is apparently NOT what I thought it was! My "work stations" are switched out each week and are new activities that I have as a theme around whatever it is that we're doing that week or month.... Gosh, was I off base or what?! A REAL work station is actually a station that use materials that have been used and taught over and over in class ( big books, computer, white boards, over head, etc.) and not new things each week. They are used all year and not changed out each week. They CAN be changed out to reflect new reading levels, topics being studied, or strategies being taught.

I am proud of the fact that I apparently was using my time effectively by meeting with guided reading groups like I was supposed to :) Yay!

In the past two years, I have melded my literacy centers.. which will now be renamed literacy work stations... and Daily 5. My work stations will look more like this:

- Read to Self                    
- Computer            
- Library
- Read to Someone
- Listening        

This was my chart this year. I think I will use a similar set up next year, just with the label 'work stations' so that the students understand they are to be working.. they aren't just at centers. I will definitely still keep the cards though. Love these!

I usually have two literacy work stations for each group to do each day. My goal is to choose other work stations that are not new sheets that have to be done each week. The fewer work sheets the better!


How do you make a kindergartener independent at something new? Model, practice, repeat. Model, practice, repeat. Then you slowly let the kids try on their own. Very much like Math Tubs, you can even have an I Can chart up for students to use.


  1. Gotta love semantics!

    Sounds like you're off to a good start on your book study.


    1. I know! I love how she pointed out that even just removing the word "centers" could change the students' whole attitude... and she's totally right! I hope you keep checking back each Wednesday. I'm planning on finding true 'work stations' for next year!

  2. I feel the same way! I actually am rereading my Daily 5 book and just ordered Debbie Diller's Literacy Work Stations. By the end of the year I was sooo tired of checking sheets from each center. What a waste of time!

    1. I had an awesome volunteer this year who checked a lot of the papers. But it was always a rush to find something for the next week to get it copied, make sure there were enough copies, explain/re-explain the sheet during guided reading groups. It was all such a hassle. There has to be a better way to do it. Hence reading this book this summer :)