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CAFE scheduling calendar

Oh, boy! I just found a website where you can create your own monthly calendar, and then it opens in Microsoft Word. This is what I will use for my “CAFE conferring notebook”. I added the link to my CAFE/Daily 5 page, but here it is, too:



Beginning with CAFE

This will be my 1st time implementing the CAFE structure in my 6th grade classroom, and I can’t wait! I feel that this is really going to help guide my students to where THEY need to be individually! I think sometimes we get so bogged down in “teaching the curriculum” that we forget to “teach the students”. Yes, we have to teach the curriculum (Alabama Course of Study Standards), but we hear so much about “differentiated instruction”-do we really do it?

 The Cafe Book  by Gail Boushey and Joan Moser

The CAFE structure allows you to teach each student on their level and help them with their own individual needs. Here is the simple breakdown of CAFE as defined by The Two Sisters.




E-expanding vocabulary

Since I teach an upper grade I am planning on changing the A-accuracy to A-awareness. 6th graders still need to work with breaking words down to read more fluently, but it is not the MAIN component of a 6th grade classroom.

I have been researching this structure for a couple of months now-I bought and read the book (see picture above), joined in discussions about the CAFE, looked at other teachers’ websites/blogs to get a feeling on how they set it up in their classroom and what they have learned about it, and I also joined the website:

This website has crucial information if you are planning on using this structure in your classroom. The website offers some free stuff, but you can also pay a fee to have complete access to lots more-articles, teacher ideas, and even videos.

As I was looking today (since we will be back in school in a couple of weeks), I came across this free video of The Two Sisters teaching a mini-lesson in a 6th grade whole group setting. This is how I plan on beginning our year with the CAFE system. Watch for yourself and leave a comment to tell me what you think.

What plans do you have for implementing the CAFE in your classroom? Have you already planned a week’s worth of mini-lessons for the beginning of school?

Here is a picture of my CAFE strategy board in my room-still have lots more to do! 🙂 Anyone want to help? 🙂

Another practice round of Daily 5

I did another round of Daily 5/CAFE  today-LOVED it!!! I was able to do 2 rounds with my 1st class and only 1 round with my 2nd class. Now-the rounds did not last as long as I wanted them to, but this is what I LOVED: Individual Conferences!!!! WOW!!!! It was so calm AND it was so enlightening!! With my 1st class I conferred with 3 students(I was interrupted by office personnel-don’t you just love the end of the school year????). I conferred with 3 kids in my 2nd class. I thought this was pretty good considering it was my FIRST time to confer one-on-one! 🙂 I so wish I had been doing this all year-I almost feel bad for my struggling kids that I feel like I didn’t really help as well as I could have!!!

Of course, I know that I didn’t do these conferences like I was supposed to being here at the end of the school year, but it still went so well!! I taught the “check for understanding” strategy with 2 of my girls-one of them did so much better than what I thought she would based on her ability to understand the deeper meaning of a piece of text. So this lets me know that after just a couple of more times with her I will need to move her on to another strategy!

I just can’t believe the insight that I was able to get on these 6 children (out of 37) today!! 🙂 I even put 3 of them on my “appointment calendar” to meet with again (I say this like I am bragging, but it IS the end of school-only 8 days left for us)!!!

This is what I will be dreaming about tonight:


Do you get the picture???????????????????????????????????