The Daily 5 Literacy Framework: A Best Practices Guide (2023)

It's no secret that developing strong literacy skills from an early age pays big dividends for students. However, implementing an effective classroom literacy program, one that meets the widely varying needs of all of your students while developing a genuine love of reading, is a significant challenge. One of the most popular and successful frameworks that has emerged to help educators meet this challenge is theJournal 5™, first introduced by Gail Boushey and Joan Moser in their 2006 book,The Daily 5: Promoting literacy independence in primary grades. This method offers students the following five activity options to work independently toward personal literacy goals:

  • read to yourself
  • work on writing
  • read to someone
  • listen to the reading
  • word work

Ready to experience this rewarding student-centered teaching method in your classroom? Or maybe you've been using the Daily 5 for years and are simply looking to refine your approach. No matter where you are on your Daily 5 journey, we've put together this guide with helpful tips to help you fully understand the framework and put best practices into action. We'll start with a high-level look at what the framework is and isn't, and then move on to practical tips for implementing each of the five options in your classroom:

The Diary 5: what is it

  • A literacy block routine

Daily 5 is a literacy framework that guides student and teacher behaviors to create a classroom of independent and engaged readers and writers. It's not the "what" it teaches, but the "how" Daily 5 aims to solve, creating a framework in which students engage in meaningful activities while educators work day and night with small groups and individuals.

  • Explicit teaching and practice of behaviors in the classroom

Instead of continually putting out fires in your classroom, Daily 5 provides literacy routines and procedures that are transparent, practiced, and maintained. With a prescribed method for introduction and suggested visual anchors for reinforcement, students gain a firm understanding of acceptable behaviors to guide their classroom decisions within their daily reading block.

  • Endurance construction for sustained read and write.

For students to become truly literate proficient, research shows that they need extended periods of authentic reading and writing. This framework is one way to provide this focused independent practice, guiding educators through the process of helping students build resilience.

  • Focused on independent learning.

Creating a framework that fosters independence requires the confidence of you, the teacher, to prepare students to accept the challenge of making thoughtful decisions in the classroom. This may sound daunting and it certainly takes time, but when you establish that trust and sense of community, you end up with a more satisfied and self-disciplined group of students.

(Video) Daily 5 Basics- How I do Reading Centers

…and what is not

  • A teacher-driven model that is based on workbooks and busy work

Student choice is key to the success of Daily 5. As the year progresses, your students will be grateful for the opportunity to choose their own literacy adventure within the framework of Daily 5. In addition, it also offers young learners the opportunity to refocus their brains so they can sustain attention during periods of direct instruction.

  • A great financial and time investment.

We've all been there as educators, brimming with ideas for exciting activities and new centers, only to be left with loads of ungraded work and burnout a few months later. Daily 5 supports practice, using reusable resources like reference charts, manipulatives, technology, and classroom libraries as keys to sustained success.

  • A one-size-fits-all approach

The Daily 5 looks different in every classroom. Course of time. This framework is intended to support student choice and flexibility in front of you to guide your teaching based on their experience, strengths, needs, and behaviors.

The Daily 5: Best Practice Tips

Option 1: Read to yourself

The "Read to Yourself" component is exactly what it sounds like: during this time, your students are equipped with books, sitting by themselves and reading independently. While this may sound simple enough, creating a classroom full of more resilient independent readers requires slow and careful execution. Three main strategies are outlined here:

  • Teach students the 3 ways to read a book.

Boushey and Moser suggest teaching three different forms of reading that encourage fluent practice from the start. By reading the pictures, even first-time students begin to understand the elements of a story; by reading the words, the more conventional definition of reading is explored; and by retelling the story, students learn the importance of understanding what they read.

By presenting this strategy, you begin to create a classroom environment in which all students feel they can succeed. This is particularly helpful for younger students or English learners who can't read yet.

(Video) RFR Daily 5

  • Encourage the “I-PICK” method of suitable books

Before students can begin to read independently, they must be equipped with the right books to meet their needs. Think of those students who spend all their time “choosing” a book from their classroom library just to find the right one at the right time, and you'll quickly see the merit of this approach.

As a strategy developed by Boushey and Moser, "I-PICK" teaches students to consider purpose, interest, comprehension, and word knowledge when making their book selections. Model, think aloud, and talk to small groups regularly to help instill this practice with your young students.

  • Provide quality reading materials.

If Daily 5 is done correctly (and, indeed, daily), the depth and breadth of your classroom reading materials may be called into question. By adding educational technology programs likeReading Eggs for students in K-2 and Reading Eggspress for students in grades 2-6, you can provide an engaging web-based reading option for your students.

In these online solutions, students can search more than 2,000 fiction and nonfiction titles in a virtual library to select their appropriate book by genre or Lexile® level. The stories also include a short comprehension quiz, which encourages readers to apply their knowledge of the three ways to read a book.

Option #2: Work on writing

During this rotation, students should have more time to practice and freedom to explore different writing topics. “Writing Work” can be used to continue the writing style or process taught in a separate writing workshop outside of Daily 5, but this is not always the case. Sustained writing in whatever form the student chooses should continue to be the focus of this rotation. Some key strategies for success are detailed below:

  • Choose what to write about

For many students, thinking about a topic can be the most difficult aspect of writing. Without creating specific expectations around this practice, you may find your students' focus quickly shift from writing to building a tower out of writing center materials. To avoid losing focus, encourage your students to create a repository of writing ideas, collected and organized into anchor charts and student writing notebooks for quick and easy access.

  • Underline the words you can't spell and move on

Critical to success in "Working on Writing," this strategy is specifically designed to help your students keep their writing flowing without losing control of their thoughts or causing long periods of frustration. It's a terrifying moment for a teacher when he's reviewing his class writing samples and sees his first graders are flustered after two lines because they're having trouble spelling "roller coaster" or "chameleon."

Prevent this from happening by teaching your students not to be afraid of using rich, explicit words that are above their spelling level. Model the writing process by thinking aloud in front of your students when you come across a difficult word. By underlining the word and fast-forwarding, you show them that it's okay if some words aren't spelled perfectly in your unpublished writing.

(Video) Best Practices in Grades 3-5 Reading Instruction: The Reading/Writing Connection

  • keep writing exciting

For many struggling students, writing is not their favorite hobby. Revitalize the writing rotation by offering students the opportunity to use online technology to explore the writing process.

In Edmentum's Learn to Read program,reading eggs, students can enter the Story Factory to create their own composition tied to a weekly theme. A variety of graphics and relevant vocabulary help students create their own short story, save their finished work, print it, or even submit their story for a weekly contest.

Option #3: Read to Someone

Often a Daily 5 favorite, "Read to Someone" offers children the opportunity to pair up and share a book of their choice. This rotation is sometimes referred to as partner reading, reading with friends, or reading with a friend. No matter what you choose to call it, "Reading for Someone" gives you significant reader development time to increase your comprehension, fluency, and accuracy. Explore some ways to set up this round successfully:

  • Become a good reading partner

Setting expectations for good reading partners in your classroom involves defining what it sounds like and what it looks like. Since volume control can often seem like an uphill battle, we'll start there. Research shows that the loudest voice in the room normally regulates the noise level. Keep your voice down when consulting with students to set the appropriate tone and expectations in your classroom.

Hand in hand with voice level, our primary learners often need guidance on what "reading someone" should be like. With “EEKK” (Elbow to Elbow, Knee to Knee), a model signed by the creators of the Daily 5 (Gail Boushey and Joan Moser), students are taught to sit next to each other to easily share their text and read aloud together. .

  • check understanding

It's not enough to practice fluent reading during “Read to Someone”; Your students should also focus on understanding the text. To check for comprehension, establish a standard practice for readers to repeat aloud the "what" and "who" of what they just read or heard. Additional comprehension questions can be added for older students. See some examples of how this strategy can be implemented in ourpinterest board.

Option #4: Listen to the Reading

“Listen to reading” can take many different forms, including online audiobooks and web-based solutions. For emerging readers, time spent listening to fluent reading models is invaluable in developing reading pronunciation and expression. Struggling readers also find this rotation beneficial, as it allows them to access texts that meet their listening level, even if it exceeds their reading level. Keep these strategies in mind when incorporating this rotation:

(Video) The Scrum Guide - Audio Version - 2020

  • Ensure a smooth technology implementation

If you're among one of those lucky few with a set of state-of-the-art gadgets for class, adding "Listen to the Lecture" to your daily rotation should be simple enough. If a set of four or five "let's cross our fingers and hope they work today" computers is more in line with the current state of technology in your classroom, rest assured, there's no reason to lose hope! Between audiobooks at your campus or city library and your school's computer lab, you can still give your students a chance to try out this rotation on a regular basis.

Also, make the most of your time at this station by making sure your students have the technical skills to log in quickly and operate the equipment correctly. Early on, it's also a good idea to nominate a student to be your "help desk helper" so you're not prevented from working with students to help you with technology issues.

  • Determine appropriate activities based on reading ability.

Listening to reading is often so engaging to children that most have no problem building stamina. You can keep that rotation exciting by providing your students with a wide variety of books to enjoy. Our online literacy solutions,Egg reading and Eggspress reading, you can be extremely helpful with this. within the programsOnline Library Catalog, students can select from over 2,000 different titles with full audio support.

For those who no longer need "Listen to Read", "Computer Time" is often substituted to focus on other reading skills in an engaging setting. In Reading Eggs and Reading Eggspress, students can work through an individualized learning path of reading lessons. Each lesson contains pre-reading activities, a focus book, a book quiz, and motivating rewards to keep students engaged and learning.

Pick #5: Word Work

Daily 5's "Word Work" component focuses on spelling and vocabulary, creating a print-rich environment and providing learning materials for students to experiment and develop an interest in language. Students can select from a variety of materials to play with words, word patterns, word families, etc., to enhance their knowledge and increase their writing skills. Consider several suggestions below to make your "Word Work" area a success:

  • Define procedures for materials.

With things like sand, playdough, markers, and glitter glue, the range of materials involved in "Word Work" is often tailored to meet the needs of its kinesthetic learners. The activities in this rotation also involve following some rules and sometimes even keeping an eye on them so that they run smoothly.

Assessing the maturity of your students is a good starting point, followed closely by releasing new material one at a time. Model how each is used in the context of "word work" and ask students to help demonstrate proper application to build letters, words, and sentences. Making it clear that each new manipulative is an asset to your classroom can help keep even your most active students up to speed during this rotation.

  • Motivate learning with focused but fun activities.

“Word work” can provide excellent practice in word manipulation and language skill development, but when it comes to compelling materials, it can also quickly descend into anarchy. Incorporate a variety of "word work" activities that encourage students to stay on task.

(Video) Lesson 5: Phonics good practice linked to the 2021 Reading Framework

Using Reading Eggs, students can practice phonics skills, content vocabulary, and sight words in a game-based environment. Leveled activities align content with individualized skill levels, while Golden Egg rewards encourage students to stay motivated. Similarly, Reading Eggspress provides an English skills area for students to practice more complex spelling patterns while earning redeemable rewards.

Looking for additional tips for using the Daily 5 framework in your classroom? Interested in learning more about Edmentum's engaging online programs for early literacy?¡Explore Reading Eggs, Reading Eggspress y Fast Phonics!!


What is the Daily Five literacy Framework? ›

Daily 5 is a literacy framework that instills behaviors of independence, creates a classroom of highly engaged readers, writers, and learners, and provides teachers with time and structure to meet diverse student needs.

What are the daily 5 literacy components? ›

Daily 5 is a literacy management system developed by Joan Moser and Gail Boucher, 2 sisters from America. The system has 5 components- read to self, read to someone, listen to reading, work on writing and word work. Students are explicitly taught how to work within each component to achieve success.

What are the goals of daily 5? ›

What is the goal for the Daily 5? The Daily 5 allows students to work independently on meaningful reading and writing while the classroom teacher meets with individuals and small groups. Students cycle through 5 tasks: read to self, read to someone, work on writing, word work, and listen to reading.

What are the five main reading skills that are taught in the balanced literacy framework? ›

The National Reading Panel identified five key concepts at the core of every effective reading instruction program: Phonemic Awareness, Phonics, Fluency, Vocabulary, and Comprehension.

What are the big 5 literacy strategies? ›

Reading is broken down into five main areas: ​phonemic awareness​, ​phonics​, ​fluency​, ​vocabulary​, and ​comprehension​.

Why are the 5 components of literacy important? ›

There are five aspects to the process of reading: phonics, phonemic awareness, vocabulary, reading comprehension and fluency. These five aspects work together to create the reading experience. As children learn to read they must develop skills in all five of these areas in order to become successful readers.

How do you do the Daily 5 in the classroom? ›

The Daily 5 is a framework that allows students to participate in 5 different activities each and every day: Read to Self, Read to Someone, Listen to Reading, Work on Writing and Work on Words.

Is the Daily 5 evidence based? ›

The decision to implement the Daily 5 was based on evidence supporting independent literacy skills validated through research from Routman (2014). In the classroom, students must be provided with sustained reading and writing time every day using meaningful texts.

Is Daily 5 balanced literacy? ›

CAFE/Daily 5 and balanced literacy are a perfect fit and aren't really that dissimilar. Balanced literacy (BL) is: independent reading, shared reading, guided reading, read aloud and word study. CAFE/Daily 5 really is all of those plus work on writing.

What are the 5 stages of literacy? ›

The five stages of literacy development are emergent literacy, alphabetic fluency, words and patterns, intermediate reading, and advanced reading.

What are the 5 essential components of effective reading program instructions? ›

Effective instructional programs and materials emphasize the five essential components of effective reading instruction: phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension.

What are the five early literacy practices in the Every Child Ready to read program? ›

The Every Child Ready to Read program encourages parents to interact with their children using the five practices of early literacy: singing, talking, reading, writing, and playing. The program is reaching children in high-need communities who are likely to enter school less prepared their wealthier peers.

What are 5 strategies for success? ›

5 Strategies for Success
  • Adapt your study habits. You can learn anything, but you may need to change your study habits to perform in line with your goals. ...
  • Manage your time. ...
  • Tune out the noise. ...
  • Ask questions. ...
  • Stay connected.

What are the five 5 components of education? ›

These five elements are:
  • Concepts.
  • Knowledge.
  • Skills.
  • Attitudes.
  • Action.

What is the key purpose of literacy? ›

Literacy lifts individuals out of poverty

Lacking basic reading and writing skills is a tremendous disadvantage. Literacy not only enriches an individual's life, but it creates opportunities for people to develop skills that will help them provide for themselves and their family.

What are the 5 components of learning? ›

The components of learning process are: drive, cue stimuli, response, reinforcement and retention.

How do you use the 5E model in the classroom? ›

How the 5E Model Works
  1. Engage. The teacher uses short activities to promote curiosity. ...
  2. Explore. A lab investigation or hands-on activities are usually introduced in this phase as students attempt to investigate a problem. ...
  3. Explain. ...
  4. Elaborate. ...
  5. Evaluate. ...
  6. Start small. ...
  7. Explore before Explain.
Mar 4, 2022

What is a criticism of Daily 5? ›

The Daily Five establishes a very low standard for teaching by emphasizing activities over outcomes, and by not specifying quality or difficulty levels for student performances. Teachers can successfully fulfill the Daily Five specifications without necessarily reaching, or even addressing, the standards.

How do you implement Daily 5? ›

The Daily 5 is a literacy framework that guides both student and teacher behaviors to create a classroom of engaged and independent readers and writers.
The Daily 5 Literacy Framework: A Guide to Best Practices
  1. Read to Self.
  2. Work on Writing.
  3. Read to Someone.
  4. Listen to Reading.
  5. Word Work.
Dec 22, 2015

Who developed Daily 5? ›

Gail Boushey and Joan Moser, also known as the Sisters, are the authors and creators of The Daily 5®, and The Literacy CAFE®. Educators understand that students can learn only when they are given engaging work.

Is Orton Gillingham the same as structured literacy? ›

Orton–Gillingham is a structured literacy approach. It introduced the idea of breaking reading and spelling down into smaller skills involving letters and sounds, and then building on these skills over time.

Is Fountas and Pinnell balanced literacy? ›

To many people today, especially in the science of reading community, Fountas and Pinnell and Lucy Calkins are synonymous with the balanced literacy approach.

What are literacy frameworks? ›

The purpose of developing a Literacy Framework is to articulate the district's approach to curriculum, instruction, assessment, materials/resources, and organization which will enable all students to develop the literacy skills needed to be college, career, and life ready.

What does a literacy framework include? ›

The process includes reading (and reading foundational skills), writing, speaking, listening, and language across all disciplines to comprehend and create text for effective communication with others in a variety of contexts.

How do you implement the daily 5? ›

Tips for Using Daily 5 in the Classroom
  1. Clear Solutions. “Clear tubs are my secret solution,” laughed Nicole, a 1st Grade Teacher, from Burlington, IA. ...
  2. By the Book. ...
  3. Goal-Setting for Success. ...
  4. Working With Students Who Are Off-Task. ...
  5. Modify What You Need To. ...
  6. Teach and Model. ...
  7. Go Slow and Model. ...
  8. Change It Up!

Is daily 5 balanced literacy? ›

CAFE/Daily 5 and balanced literacy are a perfect fit and aren't really that dissimilar. Balanced literacy (BL) is: independent reading, shared reading, guided reading, read aloud and word study. CAFE/Daily 5 really is all of those plus work on writing.

How long should daily 5 be? ›

Primary—Focus lessons in grades K–2 are 5–7 minutes in length, and Daily 5 sessions typically end up being 15–25 minutes long.

What are the 5 common discussed types of literacy? ›

  • Types of literacies.
  • What is Literacy.
  • Media literacy.
  • Cultural literacy.
  • Financial literacy.
  • Scientific literacy.
  • Information literacy.
  • Critical literacy.

What is daily 5 in kindergarten? ›

Together the five tasks - Read to Self, Work on Writing, Word Work, Listen to Reading, and Read to Someone - help students learn to work independently while improving as readers and writers.


1. Overview of the Lead for Literacy Framework
(Lead for Literacy Center)
2. The Reading Framework: Part 1
(Phonics Queen)
3. Best Practices in K-2 Reading Instruction
(Virginia Department of Education)
4. Prayer: Luminary Interview - Jonathan Tremaine Thomas
(Practicing the Way)
5. Comprehensive Literacy-Best Practices for Elementary Reading Blocks
(Virginia Department of Education)
6. Using the Jan Richardson Framework for Guided Reading
(Igniting Inspiration)


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