Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Book Share

Joan Jackson

Description

Students meet in small groups to reflect on and share their thoughts after reading a short story, poem, chapter in a novel, etc.

Objectives

The student paraphrases information.

The student participates in classroom discussions using effective speaking strategies (for example, asking questions, making observations.

The student participates as a contributor and occasionally acts as a leader in a group discussion.

The student recognizes that a literary text may elicit a variety of valid responses.

Materials

--Teacher- or Class-Selected Reading (a short story, poem, chapter from a novel, etc.)
--Teacher-Created Questions to guide group discussions (Create enough questions so that, even for thelargest group, there will be one question for each student)
--'Book Share Evaluation' (see attached file--a copy for each student)
--Chalk/Dry Erase Board or Overhead, OR a copy of the questions for each student
--Chalk, Board Markers or Overhead Pens
--Paper (for students' recordings of discussion responses). Create a space on the copy of the questions for responses if you provide a copy of the questions for each student, or have students use their own notebook paper if the questions are written on the board/overhead.

Preparations

1. Select, or provide a list of choices from which students will select, a reading assignment that can be completed in one class session, or even overnight as homework. Select a short story, poem, or chapter from a novel, etc., that lends itself to various interpretations in order to nurture students' ability to recognize that a literary text may elicit a variety of valid responses.

2. Create 4-5 questions (one for each small-group member, depending on how many are assigned to a group) that will allow for several different, yet valid, responses. Write these questions on the board or overhead for the whole class, or make a copy for each student. Examples of these types of questions are:
a. Why did the author write this piece?
b. Based on the first paragraph (or stanza) one could say that the relationship between _____ and ______ is ______.
c. What is a good alternate title for this piece? Why?
d. The poet compares _____ to _____. How does he/she think the two are similar?
e. How is/does _____ similar to/differ from _____?
f. Would you recommend this story/poem/book to other readers? Why? Why not?
g. Describe the type of reader who would be interested in this story/poem/book.

3. Make copies of the 'Book Share Evaluation' (see attached file) for each student.

Procedures

a. Select, or offer the students several choices from which to select, a reading assignment that can be completed in one class session, or even overnight as homework. A chapter from a novel that is currently being studied, a short story, or a poem would make a great choice. Try to focus on text that lends itself to various interpretations in order to nurture students' ability to recognize that a literary text may elicit a variety of valid responses.

b. After students have completed the reading, divide the class into small groups of 4-5 students.

c. Before students begin to discuss the reading, conduct a whole-group discussion about something the class has read during the past couple of weeks, using a couple of the questions created for today's activity. Focus on the way that several students can have different, yet valid, responses to the same question. Demonstrate how to paraphrase information instead of trying to record responses exactly as they are stated.

d. Explain that students will repeat this process, using the assigned reading as the basis for responses to questions, within their small groups.

e. Give each student a copy of the questions created, or write the questions on the board or overhead.

f. Make sure that students understand that each group member is responsible for leading a discussion on one of the questions. Each member is also responsible for recording all members' responses to their particular question, even when other group members' responses differ from their own.

g. Give each student a copy of the 'Book Share Evaluation', and ask them to record the names of the students (in their group) in the first part of the evaluation. The last part of the evaluation will be completed in the latter part of the activity.

h. Students work to take turns posing their question to their group members, then record the various responses on paper.

i. Each group member completes the first section of the evaluation.

j. When all groups have finished discussing their questions, recording responses, and completing the first part of the evaluation, divide the class into groups again. Place together students from each group who are responsible for the same question (all students who recorded responses for question #1 in one group, those who were responsible for recording responses to #2 in a group, etc.).

k. Have these small groups read all of the responses that were recorded within their original groups. At the end of this round of discussion, have each group member state whether or not they can now recognize how a literary text has the ability to elicit a variety of responses that, although they may be different, are still considered to be valid. Each member should use an example from his/her responses to support this statement.

l. When groups have finished this second round of discussion, have each student complete the last part of the 'Book Share Evaluation' (see attached file).

m. Collect the 'Book Share Evaluation' sheets from each student and use the 'Assessment' section below to identify any student whose scores fall below the 'Progressing' level of achievement for a particular SSS. Ask a Teacher Assistant or Parent Volunteer to go through and highlight only those students' names (and related scores) when scores fall below a '3' in any area. Use this as a guide to plan additional activities related to these SSS and your students' needs, or repeat this activity using another text.

Assessments

Students have the opportunity to evaluate their group members in each segment of the activity by using the 'Book Share Evaluation' (see attached file). On the first part of the 'Book Share Evaluation', members rate each other on questioning skills and participation. On the last part, members rate each other on their ability to paraphrase responses, their levels of participation, and on whether group members acknowledge their recognition that a literary text may elicit a variety of valid responses. Use the following rubric to assist in determining students' achievement of the selected standards:

Mastery--Student received a '6' on more than half of the evaluations related to that item (questioning, participation, paraphrasing, recognizing a variety of valid responses).
Progressing--Student received a '3', '4', or '5' on more than half of the evaluations related to that item (questioning, participation, paraphrasing, recognizing a variety of valid responses).
Emerging--Student received a '1' or '2' on more than half of the evaluations related to that item (questioning, participation, paraphrasing, recognizing a variety of valid responses).
Non-Participant or No Effort-- Student received a '0' on more than half of the evaluations related to that item (questioning, participation, paraphrasing, recognizing a variety of valid responses).
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