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Reading is Simply Delicious - Nicole Chaplain

Reading is Simply Delicious - Nicole Chaplain

Don’t you just love little cafés?  So often they offer great food, a fun atmosphere, and a fantastic overall experience.  What I love the most about little cafés, though, is the menu.  It’s  often a work of art, and mimics the feel of the café.  The food on the menu has interesting names and every dish starts to sound decadent.  In fact, if it weren’t for the menu, you wouldn’t know what each dish offered.  And if you want to pick the perfect, “just right” dish, the menu becomes invaluable.

Today I want to invite you into a Café.  Will this café offer food? Well, yes, sustenance.  Will this café have a menu?  Yes, for sure.  Will this Café be exciting and fun?  Indeed it will!  Well, come on then--what--or where-- is this café?  Just pick up a favorite book and come dine with me: we’re diving into...Café Reading!

Café Reading is a reading plan developed by two teachers who happen to be sisters – Gail Boushey and Joan Moser.  The Café was designed to function right alongside a reading structure named The Daily Five.  In the structure of The Daily Five, students or kids develop wonderful habits in literacy.  

The five components are:  

Read to Self

Read to Someone

Word Work

Work on Writing

Listen to Reading.  

All five of these components help build a stronger reader, and each has distinct benefits.


The Café is a structure, or a menu, that offers many strategies or options that students can use to become stronger, more fluent readers.  

Here’s what’s on the menu:

C –Comprehension

This vital component builds many choices on “the Menu” that children can use to better understand what they are reading or what they are hearing.

A –Accuracy

This component offers options that children can use to make sure that they are reading the words accurately and, if they aren’t, great options or strategies to use to correct it.

F –Fluency

What is Fluency?  As noted on Scholastic.com, “The most well-known definition of fluency is the ability to read text accurately, quickly.”  Reading smoothly and accurately changes the game.  Read more about Fluency here:


E –Expand Vocabulary

I love this one!  Every single time a child reads (or you read to them) his or her vocabulary is expanding.  That is why it is critical to read to your child from before birth on. They are listening, making connections, expanding their vocabulary and more.  

Check out this link:


Over the next several weeks, I will be diving into each piece of the menu and discussing how you, as a parent, can use these wonderful menu options to help your child become a better reader and, in the long run, a better student.  The food on this menu will be rich in excitement and learning, so come dine with me in The Café!

Until next time, some food for thought:

There are perhaps no days of our childhood we lived so fully

as those we spent with a favorite book.

–Marcel Proust

Disclaimer:  All parts of The Daily Five and The Café are owned by The 2 Sisters – Gail Boushey & Joan Moser.

Toddlers Love Reading Too!

Toddlers Love Reading Too!

It’s almost the end of a year.  Well, school year that is. In just 7 days, I will wrap up a school-year long journey with my sweet third graders.  They’ve grown.  In many, many ways.  They’ve grown taller.  They’ve grown smarter and wiser and they’ve grown in their reading--many of them by leaps and bounds.  It is so satisfying to watch and hear their growth in reading.  Makes my heart happy.  I venture to say that much of their growth has come from reading and reading and reading...a lot. 

And I remember during the year that I told many parents at parent teacher conferences:  “Don’t stop reading with your child.”   I told them that they are the best model for building expression, rate, and fluency.  Wait.  What?  These kids are 8 years old – some of them 9 years old.  They don’t need someone reading to them.  Oh – yes, they do.  Yes, they do.

Reading fluency begins at a very early age.  My husband and I read to our girls every night.  I can even remember reading Goodnight Moon and reaching the part in the story where the bunny is saying goodnight to everything in the room.  He reaches the part where he says, “And the quiet, old lady was whispering – hush.”  We had read that story so many times that our girls would always finish that line by saying, “hush.”  It was so cute! It was profound! They were only toddlers on our lap and yet fully aware of when that line was coming.  Every time they would finish it.  They were reading!

I found a great site that talks about the benefits of reading to your toddler.  I love what the writer has to say, because every single point is spot on.  I can tell you from a teacher’s perspective that the kids who have been read to and who read are ahead of the curve in spelling, language, and comprehension.  Their mental schema – the files in their brain – is more vast simply because they have been exposed to more things.  More pictures – more words – more language -  more scenarios – just more and it builds their little computer files.  Reading has a profound way of doing just that.  Expanding the base of knowledge.  And believe me – that’s a good, good thing.

Enjoy reading the site about 7 Benefits of Reading to Your Toddler


Until next time, some food for thought:

"The fluent reader sounds good, is easy to listen to, and reads with enough expression to help the listener understand the joy the material."


--Charles Clark, "Building Fluency: Do it Right and Do it well!" (1999)

Introducing a new Blogger on Reading!

Introducing a new Blogger on Reading!

“In the great, green room - there was a telephone and a red balloon; And a picture of the cow jumping over the moon.”  ~  Goodnight Moon

It has been well over 15 years or more since I have read those words to a little one sitting on my lap.  But, as if it were only yesterday, the words come clearly to my mind.  It seems like a perfect picture of how powerful words are, or, to be more exact, how powerful reading is.

Hello friends!  I’m Nicole Chaplain. Married 25 years to my high school sweetheart.  Mom of two, lovely daughters, one a college junior and one a high school junior.  Both the center of my heart.  A Third grade teacher who adores all things learning.  Cheer coach.  Regular church attendee.  Lover of exercise, healthy food, adventures with family, and reading.  

Oh – did I mention that I love reading?  Reading allows me to escape to other places.  Reading is the building block of all intelligence.  It is the true backbone to building understanding in all areas.  Like I tell my sweet, third grade students daily: reading is the bridge to new worlds.  It really is!  And Frederick Douglas said it even better: “Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.”  I invite you to begin a new journey into the world of sharing all about Literacy and Reading.  

It is my joy to meet you.  And it will be my joy to share all good things about the love of Literacy and Reading.  For me, it sure is a big one!

Until next time, some food for thought ~

“There are many little ways to enlarge your child’s world.
Love of books is the best of all.”  ~ Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis