April 10, 2017

Using Close Reading to teach Test Prep Strategies: Analyzing the Character {Part 2}




Change over time...it is on every test and yet it is one of the most difficult concepts for kids to grasp. 😏 Here's the chart I used and created with my students.



This became the focus for the lesson...our teaching point. To help my students understand what character change means and what it looks like, I used a timeline.

It wasn't a fancy timeline, just a simple line segment with 5 dashes for events. (It wasn't labeled beginning, middle, and end--that was the next day's lesson when we started talking about theme. You could though, for your struggling students, definitely have a labeled timeline.)




I know…many of you do that and to be honest, I used to do that too. But over the course of the 7 years, I’ve lost my love and drive for teaching. Curriculums come and go and I’m left trying to hold onto what good teaching I had left, while still trying to keep up with district mandates and school initiatives.


But with this lesson, I became a teacher again…felt like a teacher again. My students were happy and engaged and they were getting it!




Using the strategies provided in the lesson, student were able to go off independently and work on "Lawn Boy." I cut the post-its in half, so they could emulate the chart in their notebook. This also helped students who needed to manipulate their ideas. They moved the post-its around after talking with a partner or conferencing with me. 

Have you tried any close reading strategies? Leave a comment below telling me what close reading strategies you use in your room. If you don't use any, no worries, just write "none" 😉




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