Reflection: High Expectations Day 1 - Rude Giants - Section 2: Using Evidence to Describe Why the Giants are Rude


In the last year and a half I've gone through a tremendous amount of change because of Common Core professional development opportunities. I've learned to expect more from my students and let them go through "productive struggle."  When I taught this unit for the first time, I really held my students hands, leading them through the discussion and giving students sentence frames so they could answer the questions.  Looking back, I see that I hindered students' learning because I took a lot of the thinking opportunities away from them.  They also couldn't effectively answer a question without my help. 

Scaffolding is essential in first grade.  In the beginning of the year, especially, you are going to have to model what to expect from your students and employ other scaffolds to ensure that they can complete a rigorous task.  For example, when teaching about answering questions, you'll have to show them how to restate the question to answer in a complete sentence and show them how to look for evidence. However, I have also found that it's important to learn when to let go.  There comes a time when you know that the students have the skills, and you have to support less.  In this lesson, it might have been enough for me to model asking and answering questions for the first part of the story, and then I might have let students go read the rest of the story with a partner or on their own, rather than continuing in the whole group setting.  Doing so would have raised the level of rigor and motivated students to rise to the challenge.  Next time, I will definitely try to incorporate less whole group scaffolding time and encourage more independence/peer work time.

  Balancing Scaffolding and Independence
  High Expectations: Balancing Scaffolding and Independence
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Day 1 - Rude Giants

Unit 23: A First Grade Reading Comprehension Unit on "Rude Giants"
Lesson 1 of 3

Objective: SWBAT retell the story including key details, demonstrating the central message.

Big Idea: In today's lesson we are going to use illustrations and details in a story to describe its characters, setting, and events.

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