Reflection: Relevance What Really Happened in Chapter 3? - Section 2: Getting Down to Business


My lesson writing "process" is messy, and it usually goes a little something like this:

  • Think about the text that we're working with.
  • Go through the standards to see how they can be addressed with the text.
  • Ask myself, "How can students show me that they have wrestled with this standard?"


Needless to say, it is on very rare occasion that I find a resource that is helpful to me in my endeavors.  Since I'm the one thinking of these new and interesting ways for students to work with texts, I'm the one charged with creating the resources I will use.  I love to make my life difficult!

So, what goes into these resources?  Why can't I just find something in a workbook and make copies?  

Well, let's use "Did It Happen in Chapter 3" as an example:

The standard I am addressing is reading comprehension.  In other words, did they understand what they just read?  Yes, I could have simply given a reading quiz and moved on.  But, simple doesn't involve metacognition, and I am running for Miss Metacognition USA.  I needed something deeper than just a simple quiz.

I knew I wanted the first part to be something that would be quick for students to use.  This idea of saving time led me to the check-list format.  I think this is an efficient format for a quick comprehension quiz when the quiz is simply a means to a metacognitive end.

Next, I knew I didn't want it to be obvious.  I hate obvious.  Seventh graders are surprisingly smart, and when quizzes have obvious answers, all you as the instructor find out is that they're really good at quizzes.  This is why I went with items on the checklist that were almost correct.  Yes, I was trying to trick them.  They'll get over it.

Finally, I did not type the reflection question on the back of the sheet.  I wanted this lesson to unfold organically, with one idea leading to the next.  Too many times, students like to read and work ahead.  I didn't want anyone to think about the idea of rereading until I was ready to discuss it.  Knowing that they would be rereading the chapter ruins all of the fun of the impending doom of an F on a quiz.

These resources are never done.  Every time I use one, I take notes on what happened with it, how students reacted to it, and how it can be improved.  

So much for making copies out of a workbook!

  Creating a Resource
  Relevance: Creating a Resource
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What Really Happened in Chapter 3?

Unit 7: Starting The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
Lesson 4 of 13

Objective: SWBAT read and comprehend chapter 3 of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer

Big Idea: Showing students the importance of rereading a text.

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  50 minutes
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