Literacy Centers

Working with different levels of readers in the classroom?

Try literacy centers-

(Examples are from; H. Katz)


1. Restaurant Center

    -include dishes, plastic glasses and silverware, napkins, menus (some of the kids could make menus as a language arts project), order pad and pencil, aprons, etc.  Kids can take turns being customers (reading menus) and servers (writing orders), etc.  You could take it one step further by having plastic food, or coordinate the food choices with a unit you are doing in social studies (French food; Italian food, etc.)


2. Travel Center

    - include maps, travel posters, brochures, (AAA is a great place to get these things), tickets, play money, passports, cash box, suitcases, etc.  Kids can take turns being travel agents, passengers, pilots, etc.  Take it one step further by varying modes of transportation you might be studying in science class; air, sea, train, etc.


3. Veterinarian Center

    -include stuffed animals, medical bag, medicine bottles, dog/cat toys, (pretend) prescription labels, posters of different animals, etc.  Kids can take turns discussing pet problems, read posters and labels, ways for pets to be healthy, etc.  Take it to the next level by having lots of animal books of different reading levels in baskets for kids to read.


4. Banking Center

    -include check books, savings books, play money, deposit and withdrawal slips, signs, ads, receipts, etc.  Kids can take turn writing and cashing checks, depositing and withdrawing money, etc.  Take it to the next level (especially for older kids), and incorporate the stock market.


5. Grocery Store Center

   -include plastic food, shopping carts, food packets and boxes, grocery bags, cash register, marking pens, newspaper ads, and coupons.  Kids can take turn buying, and stocking shelves.  Take it a step further by using coupons for a math lesson, and see who can save the most money.  For younger kids, have them group coupons into food groups.  You can also give guidelines such as buying snacks for a birthday party; healthy foods for lunch, etc.


6. Illustration Center

  -include books with colorful illustrations (such as Eric Carle and Leo Lionni), lots of art media from crayons, to colored pencils, to paints; and different styles and sizes of paper.  Kids can explore the way book illustrations are created and how they function as part of a book.  Take it a step further- have kids write and illustrate their own book.