Reflection: Discourse and Questioning Let's Explore Light Sources - Section 5: Elaborate:


How to Make Read Alouds Count!

Step 1: Choose a good book - When I pick a read aloud I ask these questions: Is it engaging? Does it have rich language? Does it have a pattern?  What is my purpose?  What do I want my students to take away? What are the story elements? What is the theme? How does it fit with the comprehension strategies we are learning? What is the genre?

Step 2: Get Prepared! - I always read these books more than once before reading them aloud.  I listen for key vocabulary. Marzano writes about the importance of teaching Tier 2 level vocabulary words. These are general vocabulary used in academic conversations. For example: infer, analyze, apply, argue, chart, defend, etc. I use read alouds to teach these words. As I come across one of these words I have taught my students to say, What does that mean? We then have a discussion and add it to our "Wondrous Words" anchor chart. 

Step 3: The Preview!

1. Look at the cover
2. Discuss the clues in pictures
3. Read the back cover.
4. Take a picture walk

When I do an Interactive Read Aloud I always begin with a BIG introduction. Together we study the cover of the book. We read the title and look at the picture and have a conversation about what we see. I read the back of the book and sometimes we even do a picture walk.  If the book has a surprise ending I won't show the last page!

Step 4: The Prediction!

After the preview I ask my students, What do you think this book is about?  I allow my students to make predictions about the text. I allow my students to either share whole group or with their turn and talk partners.  A good prediction is made by using information from the preview as well as prior knowledge. I will ask my students, Why do you think that?

Step 5: The THINK aloud!

Throughout a read aloud I stop and begin sharing my thinking out loud. This is critical for deep comprehension. I model how to think and talk about text before asking my students to do the same high level analytical talk.  I want to give my students a model for how to comprehend and think.  This is when I introduce different comprehension strategies like inferring, making connections, synthesizing information, predicting, etc.

Step 6: DISCOURSE!! Let's Talk About it!!

In order to support a high level of student discourse within my science lessons I have assigned two different student partnerships.  Turn and Talk Partners are discourse partners that work together to share the deep thinking that happens throughout the day.  I give my students at least 3-5 opportunities to share their thinking with each book we read.

Step 7: Making the questions count!!

Depending on the purpose of the read aloud I gear my questions to align with my teaching point. If the book is fiction I may ask the following questions:

  • I wonder why did the character said that?
  • Do you like this character? Why?
  • What do you think will happen next? Why do you think that?
  • Does this character remind you of another character we have read about? Why?
  • What do you think the author means when he says...

If the book is nonfiction I may ask:

  • What facts did you enjoy learning about? Why?
  • What did you learn about this topic?
  • What kind of research did this author have to do to write this book?
  • What pictures or illustrations did you find interesting?
  • Do you want to learn more about topic? Why?

  The Interactive Read Aloud How To
  Discourse and Questioning: The Interactive Read Aloud How To
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Let's Explore Light Sources

Unit 2: Unit 2: Light Waves
Lesson 4 of 9

Objective: SWBAT identify which light sources are natural or man-made.

Big Idea: Natural or man-made? We are talking about light sources!! Let's find out which light sources are natural and which light sources are man-made.

  Print Lesson
23 teachers like this lesson
Science, Light, light wave, cause and effect, light source
  65 minutes
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