Writing the First Draft of the Readers Theater Script | EL Education Curriculum

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ELA 2012 G8:M2A:U2:L15

Writing the First Draft of the Readers Theater Script

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Long Term Learning Targets

  • I can write narrative texts about real or imagined experiences using relevant details and event sequences that make sense. (W.8.3)
  • I can create poetry, stories, and other literary forms. (W.8.11b)

Supporting Targets

  • I can analyze a model Readers Theater script to generate criteria of an effective Readers Theater script.
  • I can write a first draft of my Readers Theater script.

Ongoing Assessment

  • Draft Readers Theater script

Agenda

AgendaTeaching Notes

1.  Opening

A.  Unpacking Learning Targets (3 minutes)

2.  Work Time

A.  Analyzing a Model Script to Generate Criteria (9 minutes)

B.  Drafting a Script (20 minutes)

C.  Reading Scripts (8 minutes)

3.  Closing and Assessment

A.  Discussion: How Does My Script Develop the Main Idea of the Key Quote? (5 minutes)

4.  Homework

A.  Take your script home and finish/revise it.

  • Although this lesson and the previous lesson are in Unit 2, they actually represent the kickoff for Unit 3. This allows you time to look over the draft end of unit assessments before handing them back to students with feedback in Lesson 16.
  • In this lesson, students read and analyze the Model Readers Theater One-Scene Script (from Lesson 14) to generate criteria of an effective Readers Theater script that they can then apply when drafting their own scripts later in today's lesson.
  • At the end of the lesson, groups read each of the scripts generated by students in the group, one at a time, in order for students to hear what their script sounds like read aloud, which will help them to realize where they need to make revisions. They then take their scripts home to finish and revise.
  • In advance: Read the Model Readers Theater One-Scene Script. Focus on the features of the script in order to assist students in generating criteria for an effective Readers Theater script.
  • Post: Learning targets and Key Quotes anchor charts (from Lesson 8).

Vocabulary

Readers Theater, response

Materials

  • Equity sticks
  • Model Readers Theater One-Scene Script (from Lesson 14; one per student)
  • Readers Theater Criteria anchor chart (from Lesson 14)
  • Lined paper (two pieces per student)

Opening

OpeningMeeting Students' Needs

A. Unpacking Learning Targets (3 minutes)

  • Invite students to read the learning targets with you:

*   "I can analyze a model Readers Theater script to generate criteria of an effective Readers Theater script."

*   "I can write a first draft of my Readers Theater script."

  • Ask students to Think-Pair-Share:

*   "Why is it useful to analyze a model before writing?"

  • Consider using equity sticks to select students to share their responses. Listen for students to explain that a model is a good example of what a piece of writing can look like, so analyzing it can make us more aware of what we should be aiming for.
  • Posting learning targets allows students to reference them throughout the lesson to check their understanding. The learning targets also provide a reminder to students and teachers about the intended learning behind a given lesson or activity.
  • Discussing and clarifying the language of learning targets helps build academic vocabulary.

Work Time

Work TimeMeeting Students' Needs

A. Analyzing a Model Script to Generate Criteria (9 minutes)

  • Tell students that before they begin drafting the script for their scene of the Readers Theater, they are going to analyze the model Readers Theater script that they were introduced to yesterday to generate criteria to follow when writing their own scripts.
  • Distribute the Model Readers Theater One-Scene Script. Explain that this is just one scene of a Readers Theater made up of a number of scenes, just like the one scene they will be contributing to the Readers Theater that their group performs.
  • Invite students to get into their Readers Theater group to read the Readers Theater script together. Encourage them to allocate a role listed on the script to each group member for reading.
  • Circulate to assist students with reading the model. Focus particularly on readers who may struggle. Listen out for groups who read it particularly well together to model it for the whole group.
  • Refocus the whole group. Choose a group to read the model script aloud for everyone.
  • Ask students to refer to the section of the novel the scene is taken from and discuss in their groups:

*   "What do you notice about this model Readers Theater script?"

*   "How is this script a response to the novel To Kill a Mockingbird? A response means how it communicates a theme in the novel."

  • Select volunteers to share their group discussion with the whole group.
  • Record student suggestions in the Script column on Readers Theater Criteria anchor chart. Ensure the list includes:

-   Opens with a narrator setting the scene by providing background information on what has already happened in the story

-   Character dialogue

-   Character actions in italics and parentheses before the dialogue, or on their own line after the dialogue, to warn the person playing the character of what s/he needs to do

-   Quotes from the book incorporated into the script

-   Clearly communicates the main ideas in the key quote

-   Accurately retells the story of scenes from the novel through dialogue

-   Name of each character before the line s/he has to speak

-   Line break between speech of different characters

-   Dialogue in style and tone of the speech in the book

  • Providing models of expected work supports all learners, especially those who are challenged.
  • Analyzing models to generate criteria for their own work helps to deepen student understanding of what is expected of their work.

B. Drafting a Script (20 minutes)

  • Distribute lined paper and invite students to use the quotes they flagged in the novel for homework as well as the model -- and also to follow the criteria they generated about effective Readers Theater scripts -- to draft their own Readers Theater scripts for their scene.
  • Circulate to assist students in writing their scripts. Ask guiding questions:

*   "Have you incorporated the quotes from the novel in your script?"

*   "Have you written the name of each character before writing the line of dialogue?"

*   "Does your script tell the story of the scene through dialogue between characters?"

*   "Have you written a line break between the speech of different characters?"

*   "Is your dialogue in the same style and tone as the speech in the book?" 

  • Asking questions linked to the criteria as students are writing can help to remind them of what is expected of their work and can push their thinking further by exposing things that are inaccurate or missing.

C. Reading Scripts (8 minutes)

  • Invite groups to read each of the scripts that have been generated by individuals in the group so far. Tell students that although they haven't finished yet, they are going to share what they have done so far. Encourage students to listen for anything that doesn't sound quite right as their script is being read aloud by the group; this way they'll know where to make revisions to it. Encourage the group to make suggestions for areas of the script wherethey noticed something wasn't quite clear or accurate.
  • Circulate to listen to groups reading student scripts. Ask guiding questions:

*   "Was there any part of the script that didn't sound right?"

*   "Did the dialogue tell the story of the scene from the novel?"

  • Invite students to revise their scripts based on what they heard in the read-aloud.
  • Asking students to read their writing aloud can help them hear where there are errors that they may not have seen when reading it silently in their heads.

Closing & Assessments

Closing

A. Discussion: How Does My Script Develop the Main Idea of the Key Quote? (5 minutes)

  • Invite students to discuss in groups:

*   "How does my script develop the main idea of the key quote?"

  • Select volunteers to share their answer with the whole group.

Homework

Homework
  • Take your script home and finish/revise it. 

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