Readers’ Workshop allows students to learn skills and strategies while reading books they have picked themselves. The workshop method emphasizes teacher-student conferences and peer conversations about books.
The Dining Room Table
Picture sitting down at the dining room table with a few friends and family members as each person takes a turn discussing a book they recently read. Proponents of Readers’ Workshop will often use the dining room table discussion as an analog for how a classroom should look.
The table image comes from Nancie Atwell, an educator and author, who has been one of the workshop’s strongest advocates since the publication of her first book, In the Middle.Readers’ Workshop is an instructional method that emphasizes student growth through large amounts of independent reading, along with whole-class and small-group discussions. Rather than reading assigned selections from a basal textbook or literature anthology, students choose from authentic children’s and young adult literature written at their interest and reading level. Building lifetime readers is the long-term goal of Readers’ Workshop.