Today the students will work to show their understanding of RL5.5. I think this is one of the hardest skills to teach the kids. After learning about plot, we talk a lot about why an author included certain information. For example, just the other day my kids were talking about the book Hatchet. In the first few chapters Gary Paulsen tells us that the main character is going through his parents divorce. I asked them why Gary gave us those paragraphs and why we needed to know that information. They were quick to discuss that without that information we wouldn't know why Brian was on a plane to see his father and that the author needed a way for Brian to get on a plane. I asked," why not a vacation?" and they said Brian wouldn't have been alone then. So, this standard is really hard to teach, yet really deep and meaningful, so it can't be skipped.
While my kiddos are working, I'll be checking in on whether they understand HOW to answer the question. If I see them going in the wrong direction with it, I want to get them back on track. I need to know if they can answer it, so I want to make sure they've understood what the question is asking; especially since this is a new standard and the question stems have only been used this year.