Reflection: Routines and Procedures Cornerstone Analyzing Word Choice in Stage Directions - Section 3: The First Read: Describing the Characters and Setting


Students might initially balk at having to reread a passage.  But if you do it enough times, it becomes a routine, and students thrive on routine. 

When we read a biograph about Serling, I reminded students that we're read it a lot--like twenty times.  They said, "No! We only read it twice!"  We read it twice per day, and we worked with it over a number of days, so while twenty is hyperbole, it was certainly more than two. 

Students will read the whole play at least twice and will read certain passages up to five times each.  And they won’t even realize it, because it’s become a routine.  It’s what we do; it’s how we roll.  And it’s critical that we have this culture of rereading because there’s no way to get total meaning out of a text without rereading.

However, the text has to be rigorous and relevant enough to sustain your students interest and your interest.  If you  guide students through readings, and one class reads a passage five times, and you teach three of the same sections, you’re reading that passage fifteen times.  I have five sections, so I’d read it twenty-five times.  Make sure it’s rigorous and relevant for your students sake as well as your own.

  Repeated Readings
  Routines and Procedures: Repeated Readings
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Cornerstone Analyzing Word Choice in Stage Directions

Unit 10: Analyzing Literature with Act 1 of Rod Serling’s “The Monsters Are Due on Maple Street”
Lesson 6 of 10

Objective: Students will be able to analyze how the author uses vocabulary to create a setting that impacts the mood and characters by close reading, discussing, and writing.

Big Idea: Welcome to Maple Street. . . a world of friendly neighbors and wary whispers.

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