For the "Do Now" today, I will have my students take out their short focused research assignment from last class. For the short-focused research assignment, I have asked my students to generate their own question about the Civil Rights Movement. We have spent some time reading literature of that period, so this is a great opportunity for students to research to find their own answers to questions that they may have considered during that time. I am asking them to read over their short focused research forms so that they will be prepared to share them with a group of classmates (CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.9-10.1.a) in preparation for sharing the information with the whole class.
In this part of the lesson, I will group my students (randomly) using grouping sticks that I found at a local teaching store. The grouping sticks have several ways to group students (by color, by shape, and by number). When I'm passing out the sticks, students always try to guess how they will be grouped. (You'll notice a student holding a purple grouping stick in one of the videos for this lesson.) I am choosing to group them this way because I want the groups to be random to cover a wide range of topics.
As students listen to the group discuss their findings in the small group, they will be learning about diverse topics through the lenses of their classmates. My students will need to present their information clearly and logically so that that their classmates can follow (CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.9-10.4) I will ask them to work together to synthesize the ideas into one summary. Then, they will select one person who will summarize their findings with the whole group. Video 1 and Video 2 show my students sharing their findings with their peers. Pic 1, Pic 2, Pic 3 and Pic 4 show samples of student's questions and the findings they collected on on the short focused research assignment.
For the whole group share, the spokesperson will synthesize all of the group's findings so that he/she can share them in a logical way with the whole class (CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.9-10.4). While he/she is sharing, the rest of the group will listen to make sure that all of the relevant information is included. I am having students do this to practice their speaking and listening skills.
I will close out this segment of the lesson by asking students to make sure they have summarized their findings on the summary section of the short-focused research form (CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.9-10.2), and to add any additional learning they acquired from listening to their peers present each group's findings.
To introduce the next part of the lesson, I will remind students that our essential question for this unit is: "How are we compelled to act on our values and beliefs?" We have read Civil Rights literature that reflects how individuals during that time acted on their values and beliefs, and now we will begin to read an excerpt from The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan. The short story we will be reading is "Two Kinds" and it is about a girl with very different values and beliefs than her mother. As we read this story, we will be considering how the narrator acts on her values and beliefs.
I chose this text because it shows a young girl who wants to make her own way even though her mother has very traditional Chinese values and beliefs. I think some of my students will relate to conflicts with parents as well.
Before we begin reading, I will ask my students to turn and talk to a partner about a time when they were forced to do something that they did not want to do (CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.9-10.1). I want students to have this brief discussion because I think these memories will help them to relate to the narrator in this story.
I will begin reading the first page of the text aloud to students in order to model how I am thinking about the narrator's and her mother's values and beliefs as I read. Reading aloud also models fluency and often generates interest in the text.
I will provide an organizer for my students to capture the mother's and daughter's beliefs and reactions in this text, but I want students to start with just reading and absorbing the text.
I am choosing to do it this way because I have been reading and discussing with other teachers the merits of having students' read for the sheer enjoyment of the text before having them go back and analyzing. This idea of uninterrupted reading is a "hot topic" right now, and I really want to know whether this strategy is more useful for my students than reading and charting at the same time. I think sometimes students think they are reading just to fill in a chart--and this is not the case, so I want to try it this way and compare the work that comes out of it to the way we did it before.
I'll give students about 20-30 minutes to read the text (CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.9-10.10). I am giving them this in-class reading time because I can observe their reading behaviors as they read.
I'll close out the lesson today by asking students to orally share their impressions of the narrator and her mother. For homework, I will ask my students to complete any reading they have not completed. I am asking them to do this because next class, we will be charting the values and beliefs of the characters in the story, and students will be able to chart their ideas and answer text-dependent questions by doing a closer reading during next class.