Staying Fat For Sarah Byrnes - Think Aloud

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SWBAT make inferences while analyzing the development of a text.

Big Idea

What do I think as I read a text?


10 minutes

I asked students to write a response to the following prompt:

Explain the emotions you experience as the first day of a team activity approaches.

We then shared as a whole class some of the excitement and nervousness that students experience.

Think Aloud

25 minutes

Then I passed out a copy an excerpt from Chris Crutcher’s Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes. I explained that as we read, we would be marking the text as previous practiced  (Little Sister lesson), however, in addition, I was going to stop and explain what I am thinking in my head as I read.

I shared that Thinking Aloud in your head occurs with all good readers.  This is one way to become actively involved in reading. Connections occur through personal experience, things I’ve heard happening in the world, or some relationship to a text that I have previously read (text-to-self, text-to-world, or text-to-text).  Thinking aloud could also be questions that come to mind, images that are created, inferences I make, or using my prior knowledge.

Before reading, I had students number the paragraphs for easy reference in class discussions.

We read this as a class so I could model Thinking Aloud.  In chunk 1, I asked students to underline text that indicates how the narrator feels about baseball.   I also incorporated  “Think Aloud” examples so students realize that reading is not just words but an active involved process.

In Chunk 2, the think aloud continued.  In addition, students highlighted choices that were made by characters in the excerpt.  We predicted how these choices might impact the narrator.

Chunk 3 continued using the same process.  Students marked the text for examples of emotions felt by the narrator and choices she made during the rest of the season.


5 minutes

Students wrote a short response to

Identify the theme that you took away from this narrative.  How can you apply it to your life?

 Having time left in class allowed students to share their reflective thoughts.