Cornerstone: Rosa Parks - Analyzing Multiple Accounts of the Same Event

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SWBAT analyze multiple accounts of Rosa Parks' refusal to give up her seat.

Big Idea

How can two people experience the same thing and retell what happened differently?

Common Core Key Shift

The key shift here is thinking about multiple perspectives of the same event.  Prior to the shift in the Common Core, we analyzed 1 event from 1 perspective.  Now, we have to think about how that perspective and how the actual account of the same event might be different depending on who is recounting the event. 

In this lesson I seek to emphasize that people recount the same event differently based on experiences that they had and opinions that they hold.  I start with concrete practice and then apply that practice to the day that Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat. 

When teaching this standard the EVENT is super important.  You want to make sure that you are able to pick a clear event that is able to have two or more differing perspectives. 

Cue Set

10 minutes

I show scholars a clip from last Sunday's football game (Ravens vs. Steelers).  I ask scholars to state how a Raven's fan might describe the game.  How might a Steelers fan describe the game?  How are those descriptions the same?  Different?  Why?

The thinking here is that scholars can practice analyzing the same event from multiple perspectives with a VERY concrete topic: football.  It is well-known that people can go to the same game and have a different account of the game depending on who they are rooting for. 

Some comments I expect to hear from students are: "A Raven's fan might say that the Steelers got lucky and scored on the last field goal.  A Steelers fan might say that they dominated the game and should have won by many more points."  

I give scholars 2 minutes to jot down their thinking after watching the clip.  Then, they have 1 minute to share with a friend.  Then, I pull 2 friends from my cup and take 3 volunteers to discuss the differing perspectives. 

Rationale: I time them to keep the pace of the class up and to ensure that they are focused and not wasting time during the thinking and discussion.  I have scholars share with a friend first to practice rehearsing an answer and to hear a correct answer before being potentially put on-the-spot.  I pull 2 friends from my cup to ensure that I am calling on all scholars an equitable amount of time, also to hold scholars accountable for the independent thinking and partner sharing (they don't want to be unprepared if I call on them).  Then, I take volunteers to ensure that I'm not squashing the eager scholar who wants his or her voice to be heard. 

Teaching Strategy

20 minutes

I say, "Just like when people experience a football game, they have different accounts of what happens, authors have different accounts of historical events.  Today we're going to analyze the event of December 1st, 1955 from multiple perspectives as told by Rosa Parks herself and a children's author from 1992."   

At this point, I give them 1 minute to review their graphic organizer from yesterday to remember how Rosa Parks recounts the events on December 1st, 1955. 

Then, I read a page from a children's book from 1992 to the scholars.  I pause and model how to record the details and facts as they relate to and describe December 1st, 1955 (on the second box in the graphic organizer).  I use my visualizer so that scholars can follow along with me (both reading and recording). 

I also model thinking aloud about how the account is the same as or different from Rosa Parks' account. 



Guided Practice

30 minutes

Scholars have their own copy of the remainder of the children's book, Rosa Park's from 1992, and they break into partnerships to finish the section on the events of December 1st, 1955.  My ELL co-teacher pulls the yellow group to the front to help them access the text, and I circulate asking questions like:

Why do you think the author wrote this text?

How do you think the author feels about this topic?

What was the author's point of view in relation to Rosa Parks?

Do you think that Rosa Parks is fairly portrayed in this book?  Why? Why not?

I hold scholars accountable to discussing and writing down their thoughts. 

***If the group is having difficulty with the objective, I may pull them back together and do this part with the whole group.  It depends on the needs of the scholars.  Last year, my scholars did not need help with this, but I taught this lesson in February and we had already learned RI6 once or twice before.  This is the first time I am teaching RI6, so scholars may need more support. 

Independent Practice

18 minutes

My ELL co-teacher and I will pull 1 small group since this is the first day with a new standard and more time is spent in modeling and guided practice. 

The independent rotation work for today will be to create a paragraph that compares and contrasts how Rosa Parks and the author from 1992 recount the events of December 1st, 1955.  Scholars must use evidence from both texts to explain their thinking. 

In general, scholars look forward to this time because they are a bit more independent, they are able to get up and move around the room and because my ELL co-teacher is in the classroom and they interact with a new face :) 

I start the time by reviewing our checklist items for the week and explicitly state what should be completed by the end of the day.  This holds scholars accountable to their work thereby making  them more productive.  Then, the ELL teacher and I share the materials that our groups will need to be successful (i.e. a pencil and your book baggies).  Then, I give scholars 20 seconds to get to the place in the room where they will be for the first rotation.  The first scholars who are there with all materials they need receive additions on their paychecks or positive PAWS.

During the rotations for this lesson, my small group objective today is to analyze multiple perspectives of the same event using articles that are on each group's highest instructional level.  Scholars read a portion of the same text (different for each group depending on reading level, but the same text is read in each group).  Then we discuss who wrote the text, how they felt about the topic and the author's point of view in relation to the topic. 

After the first rotation, I do a rhythmic clap to get everyone's attention.  Scholars place hands on head and eyes on me so I know they are listening.  Then they point to where they go next.  I give them 20 seconds to get there.  Again, scholars who are at the next station in under 20 seconds with everything they need receive a positive PAW or a paycheck addition.  We practice rotations at the beginning of the year so scholars know if they are back at my table, they walk on the right side of the room, if they are with the ELL teacher, they walk on the left side of the room and if they are at their desks, they walk in the middle of the room.  This way we avoid any collisions.    

At the end of our rotation time I give scholars 20 seconds to get back to their desks and take out materials needed for the closing part of our lesson.  Timing transitions helps to make us more productive and communicates the importance of our learning time.



2 minutes

To close out our lesson, I like to remind scholars what our objective was and the extent to which we accomplished it.  I also preview the following day's lesson.  I do this because it helps scholars to remember what we did today and helps prepare their brains for tomorrow. 

I say, "Today we learned about how to analyze an event as told by different authors.  Tomorrow we are going to continue to explore this topic with a play about Rosa Parks.  Turn to your friend and tell them 1 way the children's book was different from Rosa's account." 

I give them 30 seconds to chat and then we transition to the next lesson.