This lesson builds on the previous lesson and continues to work towards helping students distinguish between deep and shallow connections. A big difference with the Common Core in making connections is that connections that students make, whether they are text to text, text to self, or text to world, must shift away from the irrelevant connections that take students out of the text and move towards being steeped in the actual words of the author. Although connecting to outside information, other books, and personal experiences may enrich a students' understanding of a text, such connections are useful only insofar as they help a student understand the text in front of them. As we push students to make connections that are deep, we need to keep helping them understand the difference between deep, text-based connections and distracting, shallow connections. See my other lessons in this unit for ideas on how to help students make deeper connections.
Underlined words below are lesson vocabulary words that are emphasized and written on sentence strips for my Reading & Writing word wall. I pull off the words off the wall for each lesson, helping students understand this key 'reading and writing' vocabulary can be generalized across texts and topics. The focus on acquiring and using these words is part of a shift in the Common Core Standards towards building students’ academic vocabulary. My words are color coded ‘pink’ for literature/’blue’ for reading strategies/’orange’ for informational text/'yellow' for writing/’green’ for all other words)
Bring Students to A Similar Learning Point
Get Student's Engaged
I chose to do fables for this connecting activity because the Core Standards have a distinct focus on learning fables and folktales. Standard RL.2.2 specifically focuses on the student’s ability to recount fables and folktales from different cultures. I also love to teach fables because the themes are recurrent in stories and movies. If my students can learn about the The Boy Who Cried Wolf then they will hopefully connect that theme to the common phrase ‘crying wolf’ or to other stories, such as The Dog Who Cried Wolf, by Keiko Kasza
Explain the task:
The focus on retelling fables (RL.2.2) and identifying a central lesson or moral (RL.2.9) demonstrate the shift of the ELA Common Core State Standards to ‘close reading’ Students are expected to have a broader range of reading knowledge (fables, classic stories, legends) and be able to compare and contrast the stories to demonstrate their understanding of story structure and story elements.
Review of work
Explain the task
Student start project
Students share ideas
"You did a great job today connecting to the text. We looked at the morals of fables that we knew and maybe learned some new ones. You were able to summarize the fable and tell the moral or lesson learned. Most importantly, you EXTENDED your learning to apply the moral to something from today's time. You are getting really smart.....!!!!"