Monday, May 12, 2014

Thinking Deeply About Text

I'm pretty excited about my new linky party and decided I had to link up a lesson myself!  Our current reading unit involves looking deeply at texts with "social issues".  We are reading aloud "Wonder" as a class and then are reading picture books to deepen our thinking and will be starting book clubs this week with some really amazing books.  I am hopeful that my students will be able to take some of the great discussions and thinking we have done together and will work to apply it on their own!

The other day I read aloud "The Great Kapok" tree to my class (only a FEW had ever seen it!) and I asked the students to be thinking about why they think I selected to use it as a text in our "Social Issues" unit.  After some discussion, we came to agreement that it was a book about protecting our environment.  After our discussion, I sent the students away to work in teams of 3 to go hunt for text evidence to show how the author was helping us see this issue.  I walked around and heard some really great discussions!

We came back together as a large group to share out our ideas about what we found.  I tracked them on our chart.

We then had a discussion about how this information in the text impacted us. I had students each write a "reaction" to the text on a post it note and had them bring it up and place it on the anchor chart next to the evidence that triggered the thinking.

A few students placed their notes on the top of the chart because they were reacting to the text as a whole.  It was a great way for us to continue to develop the difference between responding to what was actually IN the text and our REACTIONS to the text.  We will continue to work on this with our unit so that our reading response notebooks have a nice blend of the two!

It's a super easy lesson that kept everyone engaged and could be done several times to push students thinking on different texts.  Our next stop?  Trying it in our notebooks with our book clubs where we will be reading about friendship, the environment, children being bullied, family struggles, and more.

Make sure to stop by and see some of the other posts in the "Loved That Lesson" linky and stop back next month for another lesson idea!


  1. Love that book and your lesson! Thanks for sharing!

  2. I was shocked at how few children had read/heard it! Thanks for stopping by!

  3. I'm also reading Wonder to my class!