Read Atlas Curriculum Mapping :: Unit Map 2011-2012 :: Columbia University Teachers College Collaboration / Reading 4* / Grade 4 (Elementary School) text version

Unit Map 2011-2012

Columbia University Teachers College Collaboration / Reading 4* / Grade 4 (Elementary School)

Wednesday, January 11, 2012, 8:33AM

Unit 02 Following Characters into Meaning (Week 5, 4 Weeks) Unit Rationale This copyrighted material is available as a resource only to the schools belonging to the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project, school year 2011-12. If another teacher or school is interested in accessing this resource you must contact Lucy Calkins at [email protected] We will be speaking with anyone who defies this copyright and uses this resource without permission.

Rationale: Students will come out of September's unit with the habits and structures in place to launch them into a year of growing and flourishing as readers. This unit will ensure that they have not just the structures but also the motivation to fill their lives with reading. The first portion of the unit invites readers to dive headfirst into the worlds of their books--and to do so by wearing the shoes of the characters who inhabit those worlds. Readers will develop their skills at predicting, envisioning, and reading with fluency, which will allow them to live as the characters they read about, losing themselves in the worlds of their stories. They will become readers who gasp in surprise alongside their characters, clutch their books at exciting parts, and smile in satisfaction at moments of triumph. They will sharpen the tools they need to get swept along by their books, being moved and changed by what they read.

All of this builds on the work students did in their third grade character unit, and this unit will be taught with that in mind, touching only briefly (or not at all) on areas that students are already proficient in, and devoting most of the time to reteaching and deepening areas that students are ready to grow in, likely giving particular emphasis to the more advanced character analysis and interpretation work in the later bends of the unit (without entirely skipping the envisionment and prediction work that is so important to student engagement). This also attends to the Common Core State Standards which asks students in fourth grade to read narrative and understand the character.

Overview: The first two bends of this unit are detailed in the book Following Characters into Meaning in the series, Units of Study for Teaching Reading: A Curriculum for the Reading Workshop. The third bend relies on the final portion of the unit, Bringing Characters to Life and Developing Essential Reading Skills, in Constructing Curriculum, another book in the Units of Study series. All three bends are aligned with the Common Core State Standards. For a more in-depth description of how to structure and teach this unit, refer to the third grade Unit Two Curricular Plan (Heinemann).

Students entering this unit should retain all that they learned last month. If the previous unit emphasized keeping daily logs, it is crucial that they continue to keep these! If it emphasized that each child in the class make it his or her goal to author a unique reading life, and that it is important to learn from each other's lives as readers, they will continue to work on those things throughout this upcoming unit. Meanwhile, on top of all the thinking and writing and partnership talk that happens this unit, it is vital that students continue to actually read, eyes on print, for 40 minutes each day in school and for close to that

same amount of time at home.

At the start of this unit, students will be envisioning by every means possible, practicing with the whole class during the read-aloud and developing their mental pictures through discussion following independent reading and partner reading. They may also use drama to step more fully into the shoes of their characters. Next, students will bring in prediction work, pushing themselves to see not just what the character will do next, or what is yet to happen, but also how those events might unfold. During the second bend, the emphasis will shift to students reading closely, inferring to grow theories about the character, and then reading with those theories in hand, altering them according to new information. In the third and final bend, children will once again step into the shoes of the characters in their books, now drawing on everything they've learned about how to "read" characters, to deepen their understanding of characters and, simultaneously, their understanding of themselves and their worlds.

Throughout the unit, there will be assessments to ascertain what students know and to track their growth. Students at the CCSS level of proficiency will be reading books that are level P/Q, with the expectation that they will end the unit having moved up a Level to Q/R. If most children are reading levels M/N/O, it may make sense to follow the Curriculum Plan for third grade Unit 2 instead, while still putting more emphasis on the higher-level thinking in the second and third bend than if the unit were being taught to third graders.

Big Idea/Enduring Understanding 1. Reading well involves pulling the pieces of a text together so that when something happens midway through a story, it doesn't happen out of thin air.

2. The reader can see the causes for that event, the event almost seems inevitable. Essential Questions for Learners How can I walk in the shoes of characters as I read, puzzling through the surprising parts, growing insightful theories with evidence to back them up, and carrying my ideas between and across books? Guiding Questions for Teachers How can I help students envision and predict so that they walk in the characters' shoes as they read? How can I help readers build theories about characters and then carry those theories with them as they read on, supporting and revising them as need be? How can I help students move from inferences about characters to more developed interpretations, taking into account character's multiple sides and their changes and the lessons they learn (and can teach readers.)?

Common Core Standards and Indicators - Primary CCSS: ELA & Literacy in History/Social Studies, Science, & Technical Subjects K-5, CCSS: Grade 4, Reading: Literature 2. Determine central ideas or themes of a text and analyze their development; summarize the key supporting details and ideas. RL.4.2. Determine a theme of a story, drama, or poem from details in the text; summarize the

text. 3. Analyze how and why individuals, events, and ideas develop and interact over the course of a text. RL.4.3. Describe in depth a character, setting, or event in a story or drama, drawing on specific details in the text (e.g., a character's thoughts, words, or actions).

Range of Reading and Level of Text Complexity 10. Read and comprehend complex literary and informational texts independently and proficiently. RL.4.10. By the end of the year, read and comprehend literature, including stories, dramas, and poetry, in the grades 4­5 text complexity band proficiently, with scaffolding as needed at the high end of the range.

Additional Standards Particular to Your State N Y S Common Core Standards

Responding to Literature

11. Recognize, interpret and make connections in narratives, poetry, and drama, to other texts, ideas, cultural perspectives, personal events and situations. a. Self-select text based upon personal preferences

http://www.p12.nysed.gov/ciai/common_core_standards/ Skills 1 Skills 2

Below is a slice of the continuums See attached for the full Inference to Interpretation Continuum. that have been developed so far. Specifically, it is the level that meets Common Core State Standards for fourth grade from these continuum. See attachment for a draft of the full continuum. K-8 Inference to Interpretation Rubric Prediction Forming Predictions The student describes predictions based on the main plot and subplots. He or she predicts based on the what and how of events from the text. The student uses knowledge of story structure and simple knowledge of genre to make predictions on what will happen next

(e.g. this is a funny book, so everyone will probably be okay). He or she also walks in the character's shoes and uses this to predict what the main character and secondary characters will do next. Revising Predictions The student revises predictions and builds new ones as he or she continues reading. Supporting Predictions The student uses specific quotes from the text to support his or her predictions.

K-8 Prediction Rubric Draft Key Terms/Vocabulary Domain-Specific Words envision scene trait theory evidence evaluate analysis motivation empathy relationship metaphor simile

Tier Two words to describe character persistent tenacious resourceful glum peeved intolerant Sequenced Learning Plans/Minilessons Assessments Depth of Knowledge (DOK) Levels

Formative: DOK 3 Strategic Thinking: Reading Conference n a reading conference, the teacher observes and/or interviews, researching especially to understand what the reader can do, can almost do, and cannot yet do, and to understand the new work that a reader is How can I help students envision and predict so that they walk in the attempting to do, and the challenges the reader is confronting. characters' shoes as they read? 1. The teacher approaches a conference, already recalling what he or she knows about the student as a reader. The teacher may look back If we read well, we become on notes from previous conferences, small group work and the character in a book. We assessments, and/or may watch for a bit to notice patterns in what read the words and then the reader is already engaged in doing. poof! We are one of the characters in the mental 2. The teacher may begin by saying to the reader what he or she has movie we're making. Poof! already I'm Willy, bundled up on that noticed, asking the reader to say more about that ("I notice you keep sled, snow flying into my pausing to look up as you are reading. What's going on for you as a eyes, my heart racing, urging reader? Are you having a hard time getting immersed in this book?") Searchlight on. or the teacher may begin by recalling the last conversation held with When we read, you and I the reader ("Last time we talked, you were going to work on....How's need to be the ones to notice that been going?") or the teacher may begin simply by asking the if we are just gazing out at reader about his or her work as a reader ("What have you been the text, thinking, "It's as working on as a reader? How have you been pushing yourself to do pretty as a postcard." We new work as a reader? Have you been doing any of the things on our need to notice times when chart?") we are reading on emotional autopilot--maybe 3. The reader talks, the teacher uses gestures, follow up questions, understanding the text, but and active-listening to coax the reader to say more, to elaborate, to not taking it in. And we need provide examples. to say, "Stop the car. Pause the reading." When we read, 4. The teacher develops a tentative theory about the student as a we need to see not just reader, and about the new work the student is doing and could be words, but also the world of doing. Based on this, the teacher decides what he or she could the story through the eyes of compliment and could teach the reader. the character. There is a rap on the door, and we hear it. 5. The teacher compliments the reader, making sure to name what Even before the character the reader is doing well in such a way that the reader transfers that calls, "Come in," we to other days, other texts. practically call out a greeting ourselves. 6. The teacher then sets the reader up to work towards a new goal. When we read ourselves The teacher makes the goal as concrete and specific and alluring as awake, really envisioning possible, showing the reader the specifics strategies he or she could what's happening in the story use in order to make progress towards this new goal. The reader may so that we are almost in the get started working towards the new goal, with the teacher coaching character's shoes, we often into this work. The teacher assures the reader of future follow up. find ourselves remembering times in our lives when we Formative: DOK 3 Strategic Thinking: Monitoring Reading lived through something Volume & Stamina similar, and we then bring It is important for students (grades 2-8) to maintain a daily record of feelings and insights from the pages and minutes of reading they do in school and at home. those experiences to bear on These records may be kept in reading logs, which are not to be our understanding of confused with response notebooks. We define a log as simply a whatever we are reading. record of time spent reading and volume of reading accomplished A reader not only sees, during that time. It is important that the logs are out on the desk hears, and imagines as if in everyday during reading time, so that a teacher can see that yes, the story, making a movie in students have recorded the book they are reading, the page that the mind. A reader also day's reading began on, and so teachers can note how many pages a revises that mental movie. minute students are reading while in school. The general rule of Often when we read on, the thumb is most readers should read about ¾ of a page a minute,

story provides details that nudge us to say, "Oops, I'll have to change what I'm thinking." One way readers read actively and wisely, then, is we empathize with the main character, we feel with the main character, in a way that leads us to anticipate what the character will do next. To predict well, it helps to make a movie in your mind of what has yet to happen. Those movies need to show not only what will happen next, but also how it will happen. We can anticipate how things will happen by remembering what we already know of our characters. When you read in such a way that you are connected with a character, when you open your heart to him or her and care the same way you would about a friend, then envisioning, predicting, and thinking about a character happen all at once, in a whoosh.

which means in 40 minutes of reading, most students should read 30 pages. If a student is reading much more slowly, this merits further investigation. If a reader tends to read 30 pages a day during the reading workshop and only half that amount at home, this also merits conversation. Students need to be taught to study their own reading logs and to set goals according to those observations. The logs provide an irreplaceable window into students' reading lives. For information about the assessment or the assessment itself, please click the link. Formative: DOK 3 Strategic Thinking: Study of Student PostIts/Entries in Response to Reading 1. Readers are asked to respond on-the-run to their reading, thinking in response to what they read, and to do so in ways that reflect the full repertoire of reading skills they have been taught thus far. They are also sometimes channeled to add a new skill to their response repertoire. Sometimes teachers will say, In addition to all your other thoughts, please be sure you think about... Sometimes teachers request this particular kind of thinking be done on a particular color of post-it, for easy access. 2. Prior to partner-conversations, the teacher is apt to do a voice over, reminding readers to be sure they have done the intellectual work highlighted that day. 3. In partner or small group conversations, readers show each other what they have done and oftentimes assess what they have done using some criterion the teacher suggests. Look to see if you have....If you haven't, help each other to revise so you...' Sometimes the teacher prompts students to select the most proficient effort at the particular skill, to name why that example works especially well, and to help each other revise what everyone has done so the short share-time ends with each reader having an example of best practice. 4. Read on, trying to do more (of this intellectual work) and to make your new work as strong as the exemplar you now have before you. 5. This ends with the new kind of reading work being added to a chart of Kinds-of-Reading Work (this is usually more focused, as in Strategies for Reading Critically, etc.) 6. Teachers assess whether students continue to do this work as they read. In conferences, teachers say to students, Walk me through examples of when you have done... A teacher may work with a youngster, suggesting the student and the teacher look at how this kind of work has gotten better over time. 7. Students self-assess, against a rubric and make goals for themselves.

Guiding Question/Bend 2: How can I help readers build theories about characters and then carry those theories with them as they read on, supporting and revising them as need be?

We pull in to read, yes, but we also pull back from reading to think. We read like we are a character in the book, but we also read like we are a professor, growing intellectual ideas about the book. We read like we're under the covers, reading by flashlight, but we also turn the imaginary lights on in the room and scrutinize the text to grow ideas. The most fervent ideas center on the

http://readingandwritingproject.com/resources/assessments/readingassessments.html

people in our books. Researchers have found that some people, like my husband, are good at reading people, and those who can read people in real life can also read people in stories. To read people--in life and in stories--it is important to remember that actions can be windows to the person. In life and as we read, we can pause after a character has done something and say, "Let me use what just happened as a window to help me understand this person." It is important to keep in mind that characters are complicated; they are not just one way. And here's a key point: To grow nuanced and complex ideas about characters it helps to think deeply about times when a person seems to act out of character Paying attention to the objects that a character keeps near and dear is one way to grow ideas about what kind of person that character is. Those objects are often windows into the mind and heart of our characters. The possessions that a character keeps close almost always reveal something important about the person. When readers want to think deeply about a character, we examine the ways that people around the character treat the character, looking especially for patterns of behavior. We not only notice how other people, other characters, treat and view the main character; we also notice what others call the character and the voice and body language people assume when talking to the character. Readers sharpen our ideas about characters by using precise language to describe

them and their actions.

Guiding Question/Bend 3: How can I help students move from inferences about characters to developing theories, including theories that take into account characters' multiple sides, their changes and the lessons they learn (and can teach readers)?

When readers get about halfway through our books (or when our books are bursting with ideas), it is wise to take some time to organize our thoughts. One way to do this is to sort our Post-it notes into piles of ideas that seem to go together. As Jasmine showed us yesterday, once readers have grown a theory, a big idea, we reread and read on with that theory in hand. And I want you to know that we hold a theory loosely, knowing it will have a life of its own as we travel on. It will take up places we didn't expect to go. Expert readers believe that when thinking about stories, it can especially pay off to pay attention to characters in general and to their motivations and struggles in particular. A simple, obvious idea about a character or a book is a great place to start, even if your goal is a complex idea. To take that simple idea as a starting place and to climb to higher levels of thinking, it helps to use a few phrases as thought prompts, grasping those phrases like we grasp rungs on a ladder, using them to help us climb higher and higher.

The stuff that keeps recurring, that resurfaces often, that is threaded in and out of the fabric of a narrative, is the biggest stuff. That's true in life, and true in books. In books, the things that the author mentions again and again are the ones that she really wants you to notice, the ones that are critical to understanding the essence of the character and the story. I want to teach you a way that readers can intensify our reading, a way readers can catch some of the spirit of the book, to hold onto for themselves even when they are finished reading. We can look back on the jotted notes we make as we read, and research our thinking, asking, "What sort of thinking do I tend to do as I read?" After we spy on our own thinking, we can put together all the clues that we see, and together, these can help us construct a sense of ourselves as readers. We can come away from this saying, "I'm the sort of reader who does a lot of this kind of thinking..., and who doesn't do a lot of that kind of thinking." We can then give ourselves goals so we deliberately outgrow our current habits as readers and thinkers.

Resources Student texts See attached book list for books that support this unit. Websites and Web-tools used Storyworks, Meeting the Characters, Skyping the author. Professional texts Following Characters Into Meaning (Calkins, Tolan) from the Units of Study for Teaching Reading, Grades 3-5 Curricular Unit Plans, "Following Characters into Meaning" (Heinemann) Teaching Reading in Small Groups (Serravallo) Conferring with Readers (Serravallo)

Books Students Want on the Shelves Now Differentiated Instructions: Small Group

Alternative Maps for this Unit

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