I found a fun craft on Teachers Pay Teachers and thought my kids would like it. It ties into the RI.5.6 standard really well. Basically the kids read a few short passages, think about the two possible viewpoints about the topic and then record the information under a pair of cut out sunglasses. The passages are short, but appropriate for 5th grade. I like that they're small because it's a nice way to start the unit. I also like the use of the sunglasses, because it serves as a t-chart, but they're just more fun and visually appealing. If you don't want to purchase this, just find a few short stories or articles that could have two viewpoints. Then make some paper sunglasses and you're set!
Today I'd like you to work on activity to show different perspectives. “Different Perspectives” will be the title of the poster you'll be creating today. Remember, the Latin root –spect means “to see”. Sometimes “perspectives” are also referred to as “points of view”. Therefore, we'll write the subtitle “Different Points of View” below the title. Next, you'll cut out the two story boxes I've given you. Read the stores carefully. You won't all have the same stories, so there's no use checking in on your neighbor.
When you're finished, glue the boxes onto the poster, but leave space for the sunglasses underneath each one. Cut out two pairs of sunglasses for each story and glue two pairs of sunglasses below each story box. Leave a small space to write the characters’ names between the story and the sunglasses. Put a line of glue across the top of the sunglasses so that you will be able to flip up the glasses. Each pair of glasses is for a viewpoint you find in the story. Write the name of the viewpoint above each par. For example, above one pair you might write Mom, above the other you might write Dad. When you lift the glasses for the first viewpoint, you write a description of the viewpoint under the left lens and details from the text to support under the right shade. Here is a picture to show you my expectations.
While students are working, I'm going to pull a small group of my readers that have been struggling lately. This specific group didn't do too well on their end of unit test for poetry, so I want to provide some support whenever I can. Many of the poetry issues were with inferencing, so determining the multiple perspectives may be hard for them as well. I'll also move around to check on the rest of the class, as the directions can be hard to follow. I make sure to keep those posted in the room for them to see. If you can't do that, I've also printed a set of directions for the kids to keep at each table. I also keep the picture displayed so they can use it as a guide.
I also grabbed this just in case this small group was still showing signs of struggling. Teaching kids to see multiple perspectives can be hard at this age, especially when reading is difficult. I thought I might use this during RTI or at some other point if necessary. Even reading it ahead of time gave me some ideas of questions to ask the kids when working on the craftivity. The passages we are using have to do with a roller coaster, a kitten, and a snow day, and WWII. The first three are something the kids will be able to connect to, so asking them to picture the two different perspectives will be easy. The passage about WWII will be difficult because they have little background about the difference between an American and Japanese viewpoint.
Once students have finished these up, I like to throw them right into justifying so they can practice defending their thoughts.
Now that you've decided on the viewpoints and have some evidence, I'm going to ask you to partner up with students that have the same story to discuss the views you found. What viewpoints do you see? What information supports your thoughts? Think of this as an informal Socratic Seminar. You're not truly debating, but feel free to speak up if you disagree with your partner.
I just like to let the kids have an opportunity to use the work they've created and to continually practice their speaking and listening skills. This also holds them accountable for the work because they know they will have to be an active participant in a group, so they need to be prepared.