Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Small Group Lesson: Strategies for Finding Meaning in Figurative Language


Small Group Lesson: Strategies for Finding Meaning in Figurative Language from Ms. Scarborough on Vimeo.


Work Done Prior To This Lesson
The week prior to this lesson, students read “Go Fish” by Mary Stolz and were asked to determine the meaning of “swelling like a blowfish” in the context of the story and write out their response (work samples attached). Students who did not identify that the main character was “swelling like a blowfish” because he was proud were chosen for this figurative language strategies small group lesson. The students needing support in figurative language are reading at a variety of different levels from L to Q.

Lesson Objectives
Students will use textual clues to determine the meaning of idioms in short passages.  Students will discuss in group what they know about the idiom’s meaning and how they know it by referring to text clues. Students will identify and apply strategies that can be used to determine the meaning of unfamiliar figurative phrases in their future reading.

Common Core Standards

Reading: Literature - Craft and Structure:
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.3.4
Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, distinguishing literal from nonliteral language.
Language - Vocabulary Acquisition and Use:
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.3.4
Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown and multiple-meaning word and phrases based on grade 3 reading and content, choosing flexibly from a range of strategies.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.3.4.a
Use sentence-level context as a clue to the meaning of a word or phrase.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.3.5
Demonstrate understanding of figurative language, word relationships and nuances in word meanings.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.3.5.a
Distinguish the literal and nonliteral meanings of words and phrases in context (e.g., take steps).

What the Students Will Do
Students will read passages from three different pieces of short text and identify the meaning of the figurative language phrases by stating what they know (the meaning) and how they know it (text clues) from each piece. Students will discuss the strategies they used to look for meaning.

What the Teacher Will Do
I will name and notice the strategies the students are using to find meaning in figurative language phrases.  I will use the question stems:  “What do you know?” and “How do you know it?” to facilitate what the brain thinks and encourage students to articulate the strategies they are using.  This work will help students identify strategies that they can use in their independent reading.

Assessment of Small Group Meeting Student Needs
After the small group lesson I will write down the strategies the students developed collectively and independently along with my observations of their discussion and strategy work.  This assessment can be used for next steps.

Next Steps
Students will use the strategies developed to find meaning in figurative language in their “just right” books and in shared texts with the class.  I will plan on meeting with the same group of students during individual conferences to check in on the skill of identifying meaning in figurative language in their independent reading. I will also keep observation notes on their daily responding to literature classwork to identify students needing further support.

Monday, March 17, 2014

"The Rights of Man" - A Traditional Irish Hornpipe


"The Rights of Man" a Traditional Irish Hornpipe from Ms. Scarborough on Vimeo.

As part of our Culture and Community Unit in Social Studies, Amanda's father Michael came to Room 317 to share the music of his Irish heritage. Check out the video of Amanda and Michael performing "The Rights of Man", a traditional Irish hornpipe. Bravo!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

"Stepped-Up" Small Group Lesson: Details Inform Us About Characters


Details Inform Us About Characters 2 from Ms. Scarborough on Vimeo.

We read closely to catch all the details to inform us about the characters. We ask ourselves what we know about the characters and why we know it.  This lesson is based on the Barnhouse and Vinton "stepped up" model on small group work that supports specific reading skills from the book, What Readers Really Do

Friday, February 7, 2014

Ms. Scarborough's Class Dances the Sinte from Guinea, West Africa


Sinte Dance from Guinea in West Africa from Ms. Scarborough on Vimeo.

Watch our class practice the Sinte Dance from Guinea in West Africa.  The students' participated in an eight week workshop with a dance instructor from Create Dance Studios.  We performed this dance for our parents as an arts connection to the Africa Social Studies unit.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

"Stepped-Up" Small Group Lesson: Details Inform Us About Characters


"Stepped-Up" Small Group: Details Inform Us About Characters from Ms. Scarborough on Vimeo.

We read closely to catch all the details to inform us about the characters. We ask ourselves what we know about the characters and why we know it.  This lesson is based on the Barnhouse and Vinton "stepped up" model on small group work that supports specific reading skills from the book, What Readers Really Do.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

"Stepped-Up" Small Group Lesson: Using Text Clues to Find the Setting


"Stepped-Up" Small Group: Finding the Setting from Ms. Scarborough on Vimeo.

Knowing where the characters are helps us to envision the scene, so that we can follow the story and make us feel like we are right there with the characters.  This is important work that grounds us at the beginning of the story and helps us revise what we know about a character as we read on.  The students read three excerpts from Nate the Great, Amber Brown Sees Red and Judy Moody Was in a Mood.  We "stepped-up" our thinking each time and carried what we learned from each piece.  We went from finding the setting from one detail to using multiple details that led us to the setting as we revised what we knew.  The work of "stepped-up" lessons can be found in the book, What Readers Really Do by Dorothy Barnhouse and Vicky Vinton. 

Room 317 Writes Feature Articles on China













Crafting A Definition:  Feature articles are written to inform readers about something they never realized could be so complex and interesting. A feature article contains facts about a topic and one or more of the following: opinion, strong voice and story.

What We Did:  We began by immersing ourselves in the genre: reading, studying and discussing anchor texts as inspiration to guide our writing. We used books, articles, the Internet and first-hand observations to gather facts. Our reflections on the facts we gathered helped us connect our research to the outside world and ourselves and discover topics we feel strongly about.

How We Learned:  Lessons asked us to think about the structure of an article, choosing a topic, how facts work to support an author’s position, learning how a story can support your article’s facts, reflecting on the facts we researched to come up with our opinions and crafting catchy titles.