Discussion, Day 2
Lesson 9 of 9
Objective: Students will be able to analyze themes, characters, and plot in "The White Umbrella" by citing evidence in a class discussion with student generated discussion questions.
What do you think happened after the narrator threw the umbrella under the sewer? Use you your knowledge of the characters and plot events to make a logical prediction.
The Discussion, Part 2
All of my classes participated in the discussion today. Honors, co-taught, my small English 7 class. Some classes had more time than others, but they all had the discussion. And they all did a fantastic job.
Real readers construct their own meaning. Real meaning isn't created through teacher generated comprehension or analysis questions. Real meaning is constructed when students are in charge of the questions and the discussion.
Check out the first minute or so of the discussion my seventh hour had. Many of them, in the reading, asked why Mona was a brat. A student asked if we could start with that one. It wasn't phrased the way I would have written a question, but it was genuine.
Does this way prepare students for standardied tests? Yes and no. Does it prepare them to live in the world and be critical thinkers, readers, writers, and speakers? Yes.
Responding in Writing
To wrap-up the two days of discussion, I asked students to write a paragraph explaining why the narrator threw the umbrella down the sewer. This is what they came up with.
If today wasn't the day before students got out for Thanksgiving break, I would have done a much more in depth responding in writing activity. I would have given them these project options for them to complete. But alas, it was the day before Thanksgiving break, and when we come back, we start poetry.