Reflection: Developing a Conceptual Understanding Close Reading to Compare Characters - Section 4: Collaborative Activity


One unique challenge of working with First Graders is the spectrum of experience and ability they bring with them.  Which is quite noticeable in their vocabulary and reading skills.  To help even the 'playing field' and close this gap I start the school year with a 'No' list.  Basically it is a list of words that students may not use in their writing.  For example, First Graders are very comfortable with the word 'nice', as in: 'The dog is nice.  He is nice.  I like the dog. He is nice.' I show my students that example and then take out the word 'nice' and they have to tell me other words to describe the dog.  The word 'nice' is then added to the 'No' list.

I also use their spelling words to teach new vocabulary through synonyms, homophones, pre-fixes, and word endings.

In this lesson when my students needed prompting to help them with the word 'curious', I asked: 'What are you when you want to know something and you keep on asking'?   As my students volunteered words such 'smart', or 'nosy', I told them they were close and to keep thinking of words that meant they really wanted to know about something.  It did not take long until a student suggested 'curious'.

  "No" Words
  Developing a Conceptual Understanding: "No" Words
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Close Reading to Compare Characters

Unit 3: Learning New Words and Making Discoveries
Lesson 3 of 7

Objective: SWBAT use text clues to determine the character traits of the main characters.

Big Idea: Your students will gain practice using close reading strategies to identify character traits.

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