Drill 1: We Read Like Readers AND Writers! Day 2

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SWBAT try out the skills that readers use to read like a reader.

Big Idea

Are you digging deep enough into the text? To get through this year, you'll need to practice these skills every time you read.


5 minutes

We'll take a quick peek at the closure from yesterday to get kids ready for today. 

Have you thought of anything else to add to this list? What strategy do you feel might be the hardest for you? The easiest? How comfortable do you feel with these?

The kids can chat through these guided questions to start off the lesson. Usually after some time away from the initial thoughts, they find more to add to the charts. Kids usually tell me that inferences and evaluation worry them the most. This is always a place where I need to spend a lot of instruction in small groups by 5th grade. I think aloud often to model how these look because many times I find that kids simply don't know what it looks like to think and read at the same time. The idea behind this drill in boot camp is to get the kids seeing that our thoughts can be seen/heard while reading. 


10 minutes

Today we will read the start of a short story called "Eddie Takes Off." I'm going to make copies of this whole story starting on page 8 of the document. I like that the passage is in the middle and the reading strategies are listed on both sides of the text. The boxes in which the students will write later are small, but my kids haven't had much trouble in the past. I'll read aloud the first page today and spend time discussing the way the reader was thinking as a reader. Then the kiddos will work in groups to read the examples through page 11.  They only need to focus on the "As A Reader" side today. 

Today we will start reading the short story "Eddie Takes Off." While reading, we'll practice reading like a reader. We will only use the column on the left. You can fold back the column on the right each time we turn a page. I'll model first for you, and then let you do the reading on your own. The level of this text is where I'd like a 5th grader to be, but if you feel it's too difficult, don't worry. I'll be here to help you get to this level this year. We'll pull this story out at the end of the year, and wait until you see the difference in how you read and think!

I like to model these expectations all along the way so the kids see what good readers do. I think in 5th grade, we forget that kids still need to "see" how we read and that's the point of the boot camp and of my modeling. For some kids it may seem corny when I think aloud so explicitly, but most of the kids learn something or see something new every time I do it. We don't all think the same, so this is really important for me to show them my thinking. 

While reading the read like a reader thoughts, I'll be finding the text details that link to each thought to also start showing students how we're always referring to the text. 

Group Reading

10 minutes

The students will work in groups to read the story up to page 11. Not only will they read the text, they will read the reader thoughts down the left side. The kids are just getting an idea of how this would look. 

When you're looking at the reader thoughts, I want you to place a check mark by the ideas you agree with or may have been thinking as well. This is just to give you an idea of how one reader thinks while reading. This is not how everyone might think while they read the same passage. You will have the opportunity to read on your own and respond throughout this lesson. Also, as you read the reader thoughts, I want you to underline the information in the text that you feel may have triggered the reader's thought. Please do that in color. Some kids have liked drawing lines that connect or color coding each strategy. The question sectioned might all be in green, etc. Let me model that for you. 

It's really important to me that the kids are always referring to the text. This will set them up to be more successful throughout the year. If we want them to truly dig deep, they have to get into the text. 


30 minutes

After a few minutes, I will call students back together and model how to jot down my thoughts for page 12 of the story. I don't want them to write out full paragraphs for each of these parts. Otherwise, this activity could take WEEKS! 

While reading today, it's okay if the evaluate is tricky for you. Just try to find one thing that the author did that you liked. Do he mention something important? Did he describe something really well and that helped you understand? Did he use context clues? I want to see you try this, but don not take all day on this section. We'll learn lots of ways to evaluate throughout the year and you'll feel better about it later. 

Then the students are free to read the rest of the story and jot down their thoughts as a reader. Tomorrow will be set aside to repeat these tasks as a writer. Here is a student copy of page 13 in the text. The students are still struggling with the evaluate part, and that's expected. This will take the year to work on. 


5 minutes

I'd like to let the kiddos share their thoughts so far. I need to hear what they feel about this so I can better plan for the rest of the year. These strategies show us how the students are thinking when reading. If they're not doing this easily, that can be a problem. One problem I notice every year, is that the kids can't write while they're reading. They think they can read to the end and then go back and think. My goal is for them to see that we think WHILE we read, so weshould be able to stop and jot things down along the way. Now, of course, some kids could read through once and then read through again and write along the way, but that's not what I've seen. They will usually read and then start writing along the side without ever looking back at the text. I just want them to truly understand that good readers think these thoughts while reading. As soon as they start to notice that, the less they will read entire chapters and not remember a word of what they read.

 I think the reading thoughts will be easier for them than the writing thoughts. I know my students have come from grades where they are used to talking about these things in reading. In writing, I feel like my kids know that these are used to evaluate THEM, but never for them to evaluate an author. 

Here are some of my kiddos' thoughts.