Before we head to the library today, I hand out a KWL chart (What I Know, What I Want to Know, What I Learned). Once we're in the library, it's hard to get their attention, so I want to have the assignment explained ahead of time.
Students will define biography and autobiography before we leave the classroom. I encourage them to use the classroom resources. I have multiple posters up with the information. Also, there is a literature text and a dictionary under each chair.
I explain to my students that once they have selected a biography or autobiography, they are gong to fill out the K and W sections of the chart. They will fill out the L section when they are done reading the book.
In the library, I monitor the types of books my students are choosing. I make sure I shoo them out of the fiction stacks. Time for a little reality!
Once everyone has selected a book, or when there are about 10 minutes left in the period, whichever comes first, I will have them all sit down and fill out the K & W sections of the KWL.
It's important to collect the KWL for a couple of reasons: First and foremost, you want to make sure that each student did actually select a reading-level appropriate biography or autobiography. Also, you're going to want to hang on to these to give back to the students in a couple of weeks. At that time, they will add information to the L section.
At this time I also hand out a reading log. This time I'm trying something new!