In my lesson openers I always have a "connect" in which I connect students' thinking about yesterday's lesson to today's lesson. I then have a "teach" in which I model for students the lesson of the day and also have them try it out. When I think about my modeling, I use three categories; skill, strategy, and process. I model by stating the skill to the students, then giving them a strategy in which to use the skill, followed by the process to try out the strategy.
Connect: I will say, “We have finished the final draft of our literary essay. We are celebrating our lives as writers and celebrating each other’s writing by reading their hard work. *If students are not completed with their final draft, I set aside the back part of my classroom for them to work on their final while the other students are in this activity.
Teach: I will say, “We are going to practice the skill of goal setting for my presentation and the strategy of thinking through my final draft to set goals for my presentation. The process I will use is as follows:
1) Read over my final draft
2) Write a note to my reviewers as to what I will include in my presentation
3) Write a note to my reviewers as to what I would still liked suggestions about for my presentation
4) Review useful and useless feedback
I will model for students how I read through my final draft and think about what I would like helpful suggestions about and what I did really well.
Active Engagement: I will say, “Get out your final draft and silently read over it. On your “Wows and Wonders sheet” I want you to write what you are thinking of including in your presentation and what you would like more feedback about. I will check for understanding by asking every level of learner (at least 3 students-one who is at standard, one is approaching standard, and one who is above standard). I will ask the students, “What did you write down for your “wow” and “wonder.”
I will then show them examples of useful and useless feedback. We will have a discussion about why certain feedback is useful and why certain feedback is useless.
Closing of Active Engagement: I will say, “Remember successful writers are always set goals for themselves, they practice the skill of goal setting and the strategy of thinking through their final drafts to set goals for my next piece of writing. The process I will they use is as follows: they read over their draft, point out to their reviewers what they did well and what they would like suggestions about.
Independent Practice: I will say, “Now you are going to read over each other’s writing independently and quietly. You will only travel with your pencil. You will move one seat in front of you when I say go. You have 10 minutes to read over your classmate’s draft, you may not complete the reading of all of it. When you get to their writing, read the note they left you. You will only give feedback on what they asked you to give them feedback on.” During this time students will read over each other’s writing.
As they are doing this I am either helping the students in the back who have not finished or reading an essay with a student. The only conferencing I am doing with students is ensuring they are following what the student has asked them to give them feedback about. I am also asking them, “Are you giving useful or useless feedback?”