Showing posts with label Nonfiction. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Nonfiction. Show all posts

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Reading Any Way You Choose


Pick one of the ways of reading listed below, have someone take a picture or take a selfie, post it on your blog and you get 20 minutes of Read at Home credit plus you can log the minutes you read. You can do 5 of these a week, make your blog great, and get an A on your Read at Home all at the same time.

You can blog from a browser on your phone or tablet using Chrome, Firefox, or Edge. You can also post using the Edublog app with Android or Wordpress.org app using an IPhone or IPad.


Reading…
and
More Reading

Read a picture book

Listen to a parent or guardian read

Read closed-captioning on the TV

Read a chapter book

Read to a parent or guardian

Read with a pointer or finger puppet

Read and solve math word problems

Read in bed, past your bedtime

Read a story or book you wrote

Read a recipe aloud, step-by-step, while you help someone cook

Read a book about something you know nothing about

Read with a book club you created or joined

Read while eating

Read a book you love AGAIN

Read with your friends or neighbors

Listen to audio books
Read a book that became a movie
Collect words in a jar, diary, or app

Read a biography about a person you admire or don’t know

Read to the family pet or stuffed animal

Take turns reading a page at a time

Read at the local library, bookstore, restaurant, or coffee shop

Read a book that will teach you a new skill, trade, or technology

Read with a grandparent

Read about a state or country

Read with a brother or sister

Read in the bathtub (no water)

Read a book from your favorite author

Read to babies and toddlers

Read and sing song lyrics with the artist or choir

Read to family or friends with Skype or Facetime

Read a comic book or joke book

Organize your  bookshelves

Follow a recipe from a cook book

Volunteer to read at a retirement home, nursing home, or hospital

Create a puppet show

Read a craft book

Read at the park or playground

Read about caring for animals

Compile and share the shopping list

Read while riding on the bus or when riding in a plane, train, or
automobile

Read about a place you’d like to visit

Read a blog and respond with a positive comment

Read about fitness and exercise

Make or update a memories scrapbook with captions and/or titles

Read at the beach or poolside

Read a book that takes place in the past or future

Read at the laundromat or do the laundry while a parent reads to you

Read about your favorite sport or team

Keep a shared journal with
someone Take turns writing back
and forth

Read out loud with animated voices that go along with each character

Read a magazine or newspaper

Play reading games like Scrabble, Boggle, crossword puzzles
Read a folktale, fairy tale, or myth

Donate books to charity or check out books from the local library

Read a play, musical, or poetry

Read with a flashlight

Read a spooky book or mystery

Create a video of you reading and share it on your blog

Rewrite the ending of a book you found boring or confusing

Read a book that received an award or honor

Design, record, and share
commercials about books

Read while you wait at a restaurant, dentist, doctor’s office, or airport

Read about holidays, traditions, or cultures from around the world

Do a book talk or book trailer that tells all about your favorite book

Read cereal boxes, catalogs, flyers,
billboard signs, or street signs

Read on an eBook or iBook
















































Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Pond Informational Report

You can see all the Informational Reports HERE.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Informational Report--Science and L.A. Project

Reading Workshop students are working on an interdisciplinary unit in science and language arts. They are finding the volume of the classroom pond in the science class determining how many liters of water will be needed for this new and improved home for the class turtles.

In language arts, students will be writing an informational report detailing the process, and what they discovered. Essays will be scored based on the PARCC rubric below.


Friday, September 6, 2013

Reading for Understanding and Score Better Too!

So Reading Workshop students, do you want to get a better score on Study Island? Use the tips from this video and use the highlighter from Study Island and your scores will soar. These tips will also help when you have to read something in social studies and science.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Interdisciplinary Element Project

Students will be doing an interdisciplinary research/writing project in Reading Workshop and science.  Students will choose an element from the periodic table and describe the stages of the element's life.  

The language arts grade for this project will be based on organization, creativity, PUGS (punctuation, usage, grammar, and spelling), completeness, and overall quality of writing.  Students will also be writing a poem about the element and it will be graded too.  The science grade will be based on content and quality of overall project as described on the project information sheet provided by Ms. Huysman.

Before beginning to write, students must know the following information:

1.   Name of element
2.   Element symbol
3.   Atomic number
4.   Atomic mass
5.   Number of protons
6.   Number of electrons
7.   Number of neutrons
8.   Date of discovery
9.   Discoverer
10. Country of discovery
11. Boiling Point
12. Melting Point
13. State of Matter
14. Family name
15. Names of family members
16. Period/group
17. Uses for element
18. Type of element

All of this information is expected to be included in the project.  The written part will be posted on student blogs.  This will be printed out and included with other parts of the project as required for science.

Image from http://quantumartandpoetry.blogspot.com

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Step for Reading Nonfiction

Want an easy guide to reading difficult text.  Here are steps to follow.

1.  Skim the entire article FIRST
2.  Look at the title, headings, subheadings, and bold print
3.  Does the introduction give facts or just get the reader engaged?
4.  Visualize and make connections
5.  Stop and think. Ask yourself, “does this make sense?”
6.  Reread sentences, paragraphs, or the whole article to help you understand
7.  Focus, know when you don’t know
8.  Wonder, ask questions, predict and confirm
9.  Look for capitalization of names and other proper nouns
10. Find the W’s (who, what, when, where, why, and how)
11. Mark out and substitute hard words
12. Cross out words that don't matter
13. Highlight only the important parts (BIKINIS ONLY)

Thursday, January 6, 2011

What Tools are in Your Reading Toolbox?

If you were building a house, would you use a hammer for every task?    It would be more than a little difficult to measure a board with a hammer.  Cutting it in two would be even more challenging.  Imagine finishing the cement in the garage with only a hammer.  House construction requires a variety of tools, each appropriate for a given task.  

Similarly, reading requires many tools, each which helps in a certain way, with different situations.  Recently in Reading Workshop, we have been focusing on reading difficult, nonfiction text.  We have focused on what matters and what doesn't.  We have also looked at specific skills that contribute to comprehension.

What is Important
1. W's (who, what, when, where, why, how)
2. Main Points
3. Ideas that relate to the gist

What is Not
1. Supporting Details
2. Examples
3. Interesting Stories or Opinions
4. Most Adverbs and Adjectives

But remember anything that helps you understand what you are reading is ALWAYS IMPORTANT!

Strategies for Reading Nonfiction

1.Skim
2.Adjust your reading speed/slow down when needed
3.Read and highlight only the essential information
4.Substitute easy words for more difficult ones.
5.Think about the writer and the writer's purpose
6.Connect to prior knowledge
7.List W’s
8.List facts

What should be added to the list?  What strategies do you use when reading difficult text?

For more information on reading check out these posts:

Image from http://www.stockvault.net/photo/107135/hammer

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Reading Strategies, Using Prior Knowledge Part 2

Yesterday's class focused on Using Prior Knowledge to help students read and understand their SSR book.  Today in Reading Workshop, we will look at how this skill appears when reading nonfiction.

Good readers constantly try to make sense out of what they read by seeing how it fits with what they already know. As you are reading, think of connections to the text from your experiences and background knowledge.

This article is from MSNBC/Washington Post.

This winter's extreme weather — with heavy snowfall in some places and unusually low temperatures — is in fact a sign of how climate change disrupts long-standing patterns, according to a new report by the National Wildlife Federation.


Read the entire article here.

As you are reading, list facts/information that you know that enables you to comprehend this article.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

What's the Deal With Details?

Students in Reading Workshop are confused.  All year they have listened to me scream about more details.  They hear comments like, use information from the text/book, include support from the selection, tell me more, back up your point, and you need more details. In every writing assignment, whether it was a letter, a journal, or a blog post, I have constantly prodded them to help the reader visualize by including more details.

Now, as we begin to focus more on reading, and breaking down nonfiction essays, I am telling them to forget the details.  All we talked about yesterday was looking for the main points, looking for the gist, and the W's.  The message has changed and the students are giving me that dazed and confused look.

So what's the deal with details?  Do they matter or not?  Well, the answer is yes and no.  As a writer, details are your best friend.  They are how you help the reader understand.  They help you draw a picture so the reader sees and comprehends your points.  Specific details make writing great.

As a reader, fighting for understanding of difficult text, skip the details.  Don't worry about spectacular facts, or engaging opinions.  Ignore grabber introductions written to get you interested in a piece of writing.  As a reader, focus on the W's.  Find out who is the main person (or topic) of the essays.  Look for where and when the event happened.  Determine why this event took place and how it worked.

Then look for the gist.  Find the central idea.  Determine the most vital part of the piece of writing.  Once you understand this, you have successfully read the essay.

Do details matter?  Only if you need them to help you understand the W's and the gist.
*

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Learning to Read, Adult Style



For the next several weeks, we will be focusing on learning how to read. I am not talking about your overused, "sound out the words, and go back and reread when you don't get it," but real skills that readers of higher level essays use to comprehend.

Learning to read is the main focus throughout elementary school. However, the style of reading must change as students enter Jr. High School and above. By sixth grade, figuring out all of the words is a small part of the reading process. Students must learn to decipher meaning, especially in difficult text. Reading for the gist, understanding the W's (who, what, when, where, why, and how), and comprehending important details becomes the focus.

Although comprehension strategies are taught in the primary grades, the techniques should change as students enter the intermediate grades. That is our objective currently in language arts class.

Over the next few weeks, students will be taught to follow these steps when reading nonfiction.

1.Skim
2.Read and Highlight
3.List W’s
4.List facts
5.Write a topic sentence/Gist Statement

Today we focused on skimming for key words.  As we move forward we will break down nonfiction articles trying to glean the most important facts and information.  In the weeks to come, we will focus on how the parts of speech help determine meaning, what to highlight, and what to ignore, pace of reading, word substitution, and several other skills that will prepare students as critical readers in the years ahead.
*

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Why Skimming Matters Most

Is skimming the most important skill needed by readers today? In the technology driven, Web 2.0 world, readers are faced with information overload. Just the number of words thrown out at readers on the Internet causes an overload for struggling readers. Web pages are jammed with facts, opinions and statistics. Links to everywhere just wait to lead the reader astray.

Just looking at the main page of the Reading Workshop blog must be daunting for someone struggling to get through the words. On top of that, you have the words in different colors and in different places. The day of just reading from top to bottom and left to right is over. Now readers must know, at a glance, what is relevant.

This week as we began reading and writing persuasive essays, the challenges of just a simple Google search overwhelmed some struggling readers. Limited vocabulary made for unsuccessful or irrelevant searches for many students. Even when provided with key words, the need to quickly skim the results and evaluate for relevancy, was quite a challenge.

Determining whether or not an article was just on topic, or if it provided information to support a persuasive essay was another challenge. Students searched for facts to support their opinions. Just this part of the writing/reading process was hard work.

In order to search successfully, students needed to follow these steps:
1. Choose appropriate search terms,
2. Skim the search results,
3. Find links that most likely fit the topic,
4. Determine if the web pages provided appropriate information,
5. Decide if sites might include facts to support their opinion,
6. Go to the websites and skim for facts and information,
7. Save appropriate information and sources,

On top of these tasks, the ever-present web filter blocked many search results, and students only had 30 minutes of class time. Even faced with all of these obstacles, many students found research results with statistics and facts to begin to build a convincing persuasive essay.

As students continue their search today, maybe the best topic to write about would be "Skimming is the Most Important Reading Skill."

*

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Highlighting is Like Wearing a Bikini

One of the biggest problems when students read nonfiction is deciding what is important. Today's lesson focused on determining what is important and what is not, to understand an essay. Writers add a lot of detail that is not necessary to understand the gist. They use variety in their language through word choice, and sentence structure. Often times they put in entertaining stories or share their opinions to generate reader interest. The challenge with difficult text is to cut through the fluff, or extra details to understand the main points.

OK, by now I am sure you are wondering, what does this have to do with bikinis? When you highlight, you should only cover the essentials. A one piece suit covers things that don't neccessarily matter. A cover-up covers even more, a lot of which is not needed. A big beach towel can be wrapped around and covers everything.

This is just like highlighting. Students' papers usually look like yellow coloring pages when they first learn to highlight. They need to throw away the beach towel, and only highlight the essential information. Think about minimal coverage for maximum effect. Then what is highlighted will help understand what is important.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Is Surfing the Net Reading?

"She does spend hours on the internet every day. I would say that this would be the internet generations way of reading," said Shasta Goode.

Thank you for this thought provoking comment that was posted on the Reading Post.

So readers, here are a few questions:

1. Is surfing the net the same as reading a book? How is it alike? Different?
2. Is reading a magazine the same as surfing the net? Reading a book?
3. Is reading nonfiction material posted on the internet a more valuable skill for students as more and more information is digital?
4. Are there different skills needed to read web pages v. reading printed material?


Thanks to S.G. for contributing to the blog with her comment.


Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Key Words to Reading

Not all words are created equal. Some words carry a heavier weight to the reader who is tuned in to using all possible means for comprehension.

Not to be outdone by 6A, the 6B class came up with the list above and beyond all lists. Partners worked through their Scholastic News for key words that helped the reader know when an important point is about to come. Listed below are words that the discerning reader will use as keys to getting it.

  1. Why- makes you think about a “W” detail; reason

  2. but- opposite; something else is happening

  3. and- tells that there is going to be another example

  4. I think- tells you somebody's opinion; gives an example [I wonder, I thought, I know, I pictured]

  5. because- gives you a reason for something

  6. or- tells something different

  7. said- tells somebody's opinion

  8. who- makes you think about a “W” detail; person

  9. however- something else is happening

  10. about- gives more information

  11. also- tells something is coming

  12. what- makes you think about a “W” detail

  13. show(s)- tells you more detail

  14. when- makes you think about a “W” details; time

  15. If..., then- shows a relationship

  16. Each/ for example- - elaborates or tells more information

  17. where- makes you think about a “W” detail; place

  18. results in- causes, effect, finished product

  19. point is- main idea, gist

  20. difference- something else


GREAT JOB to both classes for their hard work and outstanding effort!

A special shout out to Haley and Baylie for their outstanding finds (they even outdid the combination of Mrs. Bowers and me).




Discussion for tomorrow--check your grammar and spelling before commenting (See yesterday's Blog comments).

Monday, January 14, 2008

Get a Clue Without Words


Nothing replaces reading to get the meaning, but there are a lot of other clues if you know where to search. Using Scholastic News, we focused on some of the ways a reader can figure out the gist of an article.

Here are our NOTES for today.

Clues to Get the Gist

Use everything other than words to get the gist. Look at the title, sub-titles, headings, fonts, pictures, captions, etc.

The 6A Language Arts class worked first as partners, and then as a class and compiled this list of non-word ways to understand as article.

  1. Title—gives an idea of the article’s topic

  2. Font—different font like bold print means word or idea is important

  3. Pictures—visualize the information

  4. Captions—help understand the picture

  5. Colored sections—important information/ makes you want to read them

  6. Subtitles—provide details to go with the title

  7. Headings—tells what the section is about

  8. Timeline—gives dates events happened

  9. Inserts—extra information that is not necessarily part of the story

  10. Graphs—shows data/statistics

  11. Questions—makes you think about main points

List compiled by 6A


Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Reading or You're Not a Little Kid Anymore

Learning to read is the main focus throughout elementary school. However, the style of reading must change as students enter Jr. High School and above. By sixth grade, figuring out all of the words is a small part of the reading process. Students must learn to decipher meaning, especially in difficult text. Reading for the Gist, understanding the W's (who, what, when, where, why, and how), and comprehending important details becomes the focus.

Although comprehension strategies are taught in the primary grades, the techniques should change as students enter the intermediate grades. That is our objective currently in language arts class.

Our notes from yesterday illustrate our focus:

01/07/08 NOTES Reading Nonfiction 1


1.Skim
2.Read & Highlight
3.List W’s
4.List facts
5.Write a topic sentence/Gist Statement


Basically we are breaking down nonfiction articles trying to glean the most important facts and information. One particularly difficult sentence from an article in Science News Online took almost one half hour just to figure out. The sentence is written with a complex style, and uses vocabulary that was unfamiliar to many sixth grade readers. These three copies of the sentence show the process we went through to break it down and make it easier to read.


"The team has withheld from its article critical code-breaking details that could abet would-be hackers."

The team has withheld from its article critical code-breaking details that could help would-be hackers.

The team withheld details that could help hackers.

Our goal is to break down the meaning to the simplest terms, to make reading and understanding easy. This takes an immense amount of hard work and brain power. Students have been giving a great amount of effort as they are learning new reading skills.

Topics of discussion include:

Learning to Read
You Don't Have to Get it All
What Did the Writer Feel/Think as he Wrote
Reading Rate
How the W's Guide Thoughts
Predict and Revise