Exploring Human Nature: Examining a Theme in Individual Reading Books

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SWBAT trace a theme throughout a text and identify elements that contribute to the theme in their individual reading book by writing short analytical theme paragraphs.

Big Idea

Let's transfer taught skills and apply them to a different text!

Warm Up/Mini Lesson

10 minutes

I love when students have an opportunity to connect lessons and skills we have worked on in class to an individual book they are reading. Students are going to show me what they can do! I am not going to engage students in our typical Reader's/Writer's Workshop conferences. Rather, they will be completing work on their own so I can assess their ability to identify a theme in a text (RL 9-10.2) and cite text evidence that supports their theme analysis (RL 9-10.1).  I have a couple students are are reading non-fiction texts for their individual reading book, so they will be determining a central idea in a text (RI 9-10.2) and citing text evidence that supports their inferences (RI 9-10.1).  

My students are required to read and acquire Accelerated Reader (AR) points throughout the semester by reading a book outside of class, taking quizzes and earning points for each book. Since we have been working with texts that tie to the theme "What Makes Us Human," I am going to ask them to make those connections with their individual reading book.  

As always, I will model the skills I am asking students to do.  I will begin class by showing students an example of the Individual Reading Book Assignment they will be working with.  It is adopted from Chris Tovani's Inner Voice Sheet.  Before class began, I worked through the assignment with a novel I am currently reading.  I will display and read the students Individual Reading Book Assignment--teacher example.  I am a firm believer in modeling skills for students.  It really helps with their confidence and knowledge.  Plus, for the auditory and visual learner, nothing is better!

Student Work Time

30 minutes

Normally, while students are reading their individual books, I select a few students to have conferences with.  However, today I am not going to have conferences.  Rather, I am just going to let students work.  I will tell them that today is a mid-unit assessment day.  They will have 30 minutes to complete the four squares of the assignment.  

While students are working, I will walk around and update my classroom Individual Reading Data Chart.  The data collected on this chart is excellent! Each time we do Reader's Workshop, I update this chart.  Students and I often discuss their reading habits and we communicate those habits and goals with their parents.  This Individual Reading Data Chart Example shows a section on a chart and this Individual Reading Data Chart Explanation explains how I complete the chart with useful data.  

Wrap up

5 minutes

With a few minutes left in class, I will ask students to work on their Book Chat Preparation Sheet.  Each student is required to present their Book Chart Prep Sheet once per semester. HERE IS A LESSON for Book Chat Presentation Sheet.