Before we dig into a further understanding of our notes, I introduce the concept of signposts in literature. We first determine that signposts in the "real world" are signs that help us to notice important features on the road.
Stop sign = stop your car.
Fork in the road sign = road will split.
Now we have to think about signposts in literature. These are attributes that skilled readers notice in all works of fiction.
The first signpost is: contrast & contradiction.
Contrast & Contradiction
When a character does something surprising or opposite of what the reader expects.
In order for us to find a contrast & contradiction moment, we must first get to know our character. They cannot surprise us if we don't know a little bit about them first. That is why I wait to present these notes until we're a further into our read aloud. We get a chance to know our characters.
I read aloud from Iqbal. Before I begin, I make a note to say as I read, listen for contrast and contradiction. Maybe when you hear it, raise your hand and I'll call on you to explain your example. Usually kids get so engrossed in the story that they don't remember to interrupt me. In that case, we'll go back and find an example after the read aloud. We want to come to a consensus as a class as the strongest example of the signpost in the novel.
Here is a class example from the novel Iqbal:
In the final portion of the lesson, kids begin working on the independent practice piece. Now they will find examples of contrast and contradiction using the literature circle novels, as well as catch up on their reading and complete Discussion Boxes, Set 4.
I make sure to circulate and answer questions about contrast & contradiction, as well as answer any further questions about their independent reading.
This has to be independent because at any given day, kids will be in different places in their reading. If I put kids together, they may spoil the outcomes for one another... never good. : (