Reflection: Checks for Understanding Analyzing Sydney Carton's Choice and Dickens' Finale in A Tale of Two Cities - Section 1: SSR and Mini-Quiz


Obviously, you can see that I struggled a little with how to assess, or even if I should assess, their reading comprehension. This is where some of my tension in the transition to Common Core lies.

There are certain things that I have always done as a literature teacher that do not fit into my new identity as a Common Core aligned English Language Arts teacher. For example, I am inclined to quiz students as a form of reading accountability. But really, quizzes that check for understanding aren't always standards based. To really meet the standards, I need to be asking my students analytical questions that get at the heart of why and author does what he does, not just what he's up to.

I do live in reality, though. I teach high school students who have grown up in the paradigm where points equate accountability. So, asking them to report out on their reading isn't always a bad thing if you actually want them to read. I guess what I need to be mindful of is how to assess both skills and comprehension at the same time.

I don't know that today's quiz was that elegant of a solution. It definitely helped me to see which kids were caught up and which were not. I was also able to derive some class conversation about the importance and purpose of Madame Defarge. In regards to the standards I am trying to work towards in this unit, however, I missed those. And this is the time to give myself some grace and know that I will hit them again soon.

  Comprehension vs. Skills Assessment
  Checks for Understanding: Comprehension vs. Skills Assessment
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Analyzing Sydney Carton's Choice and Dickens' Finale in A Tale of Two Cities

Unit 9: Literary: Analysis of Narrative Style in A Tale of Two Cities
Lesson 9 of 9

Objective: SWBAT analyze how the end of a character's story fits within the larger themes or message or a book as a whole by reading and writing about the final chapter of A Tale of Two Cities.

Big Idea: Dickens has many message in his novel. Now that we have all of the puzzle pieces in front of us, it's time to figure out what he was up to.

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