Close Read: Rain School | EL Education Curriculum

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ELA G3:M1:U1:L5

Close Read: Rain School

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These are the CCS Standards addressed in this lesson:

  • RL.3.1: Ask and answer questions to demonstrate understanding of a text, referring explicitly to the text as the basis for the answers.
  • RL.3.2: Recount stories, including fables, folktales, and myths from diverse cultures; determine the central message, lesson, or moral and explain how it is conveyed through key details in the text.
  • RL.3.3: Describe characters in a story (e.g., their traits, motivations, or feelings) and explain how their actions contribute to the sequence of events.
  • RL.3.4: Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, distinguishing literal from nonliteral language.
  • 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.

Daily Learning Targets

  • I can refer explicitly to the text explicitly to answer questions about Rain School. (RL.3.1, RL.3.2, RL.3.3, RL.3.4, L.3.4)
  • I can explain how the central message, lesson, or moral is conveyed through details in Rain School. (RL.3.1, RL.3.2)

Ongoing Assessment

  • Vocabulary log (RL.3.4, L.3.4)
  • Close Read Note-catcher: Rain School (RL.3.1, RL.3.2, RL.3.3)

Agenda

AgendaTeaching Notes

1.       Opening

A.      Launching Vocabulary Logs (15 minutes)

B.      Reviewing Learning Targets (10 minutes)

2.       Work Time

A.      Close Reading: Rain School, Pages 5-13 (25 minutes)

3.       Closing and Assessment

A.      Reflecting on Learning (10 minutes)

4.       Homework

A.      Complete Affixes Practice I in your Unit 1 homework.

B.      Read your research book for at least 10 minutes and record any new vocabulary in your vocabulary log.

Purpose of lesson and alignment to standards:

  • In Opening A, students are given vocabulary logs (RL.3.4, L.3.4). Students will use the logs to collect new academic and topical vocabulary words in lessons and during independent reading both throughout the module and the school year.
  • Students complete a close read of pages 5-13 of Rain School to better understand the challenges faced and how they were overcome (RL.3.1, RL.3.2, RL.3.3). Continue to ensure students understand that although these are the challenges faced by Thomas and some students in Chad, not all children in Chad have the same experience. There is an option for students to use manipulatives such as play-dough and drinking straws to build a model school with a roof during the close read.
  • The close reading in this lesson is mostly teacher-led, so all students work at the pace the teacher sets, with support where necessary. Consider inviting students who need an extension opportunity to be peer coaches.
  • Recall that although this story is set in Chad, it isn't a fable, folktale, or myth from another culture and doesn't fully address the requirement of the RL.3.2 standard. This part of the standard is addressed in more detail in 3M2 with folktales.
  • This lesson is the final in a series of three that include built-out instruction for the use of Goal 1 Conversation Cues to promote productive and equitable conversation (adapted from Michaels, Sarah and O'Connor, Cathy. Talk Science Primer. Cambridge, MA: TERC, 2012. Based on Chapin, S., O'Connor, C., and Anderson, N. [2009]. Classroom Discussions: Using Math Talk to Help Students Learn, Grades K-6. Second Edition. Sausalito, CA: Math Solutions Publications). As the modules progress, Goal 2, 3, and 4 Conversation Cues will be gradually introduced. Goal 1 Conversation Cues encourage all students to talk and be understood. Consider providing students with a thinking journal or scrap paper.
  • Continue to use Think-Pair-Share strategically to promote productive and equitable conversation. (Refer to the Classroom Protocols document for the full version of the protocol.)
  • The research reading that students complete for homework will help build both their vocabulary and knowledge pertaining to overcoming challenges in access to education, books, and reading near and far. By participating in this volume of reading over a span of time, students will develop a wide base of knowledge about the world and the words that help describe and make sense of it.

How it builds on previous work:

  • In Lesson 4, students read Rain School for gist and to recount the story using their Reading for Gist and Recounting the Story note-catcher. In this lesson, they complete a close read to better understand how the central message, lesson, or moral is conveyed through the details in the text.
  • Students have been independently reading from their research book each night for homework. In this lesson, students receive their vocabulary log, and this will become a new tool for them to use when reading independently for homework.

Areas where students may need additional support:

  • Some students may need additional support filling out their Close Read Note-catcher: Rain School. Consider using technology to support those students (see Technology and Multimedia). Consider also inviting students who will need a lot of support with both reading and completing their note-catcher to work with you in a small group.

Assessment guidance:

  • Review students' Close Read Note-catcher: Rain School to assess whether they can determine which details convey the central message or lesson in the text.
  • Review students' vocabulary logs to ensure they have been set up appropriately. Help students correct any issues.

Down the road:

  • In the next lesson, students will learn how to write a short constructed response about the lesson in Rain School, and they will prepare for the Mid-Unit 1 Assessment by reviewing their research reading books to get ready for a small group discussion.
  • In the next lesson, students receive their independent reading journal. They will begin completing prompts in this journal after their independent reading each night for homework.

In Advance

  • Prepare vocabulary logs. Vocabulary logs could be a notebook in which students glue forms in the front and back, or you could create vocabulary logs by two-sided copying vocabulary forms and putting them in a folder with academic vocabulary forms on the front and topical vocabulary forms on the back. Students will continue to use these logs throughout the year and will need new ones only when they have run out of space; however, to distinguish between the topics they study in each module, they will need to flag where one topic ends and a new one begins in the back of their log. If logs are prepared for students in advance, you may not need to use the first 15 minutes of the lesson for students to prepare them.
  • Predetermine pairs for work in this lesson based on reading ability. Students will work in pairs to sort vocabulary words and complete their Close Read Note-catcher: Rain School, so each pair will need at least one skilled reader.
  • Review the Think-Pair-Share and Red Light, Green Light protocols. (Refer to the Classroom Protocols document for the full version of the protocol.)
  • Post: Learning targets and Close Readers Do These Things anchor chart.

Tech and Multimedia

  • Work Time A: Students complete their note-catchers in a word-processing document, such as a Google Doc, using speech-to-text facilities activated on devices or using an app or software like Dictation.io.

Supporting English Language Learners

Supports guided in part by CA ELD Standards 3.I.B.6, 3.I.B.7, 3.1.B.8

Important points in the lesson itself

  • The basic design of this lesson supports ELLs with opportunities to celebrate cultural and educational diversity; deepen their understanding of Rain School by participating in a close read using a supportive graphic organizer; and practice strategies to become good close readers.
  • ELLs may find it challenging to understand the language that describes the lesson of the story as well as the language in the details that support the lesson. First work with them to make sure they clearly understand the meaning of the lesson and the meaning of one or two details by discussing, sketching, and acting out key phrases. Then help them draw connections between the details and the lesson, encouraging them to explain why the details convey the lesson. To contrast, consider discussing a detail that does not directly support the lesson and why it doesn't directly support the lesson, e.g., "Everyone sits down." See the Meeting Students' Needs column for additional suggestions.

Levels of support

For lighter support:

  • During the close read, challenge students to generate questions about the excerpt before asking the prepared questions. Example: "What questions can we ask about this excerpt? Let's see if we can answer them together." (What is the lesson of the story? How do the details convey the lesson? Why are there no classrooms? What is a sapling? What is the moment they have been waiting for?)
  • Adapt work with the vocabulary log by encouraging students to find the target word in other texts, highlight the word, read the sentence aloud, and discuss the meaning of the sentence.
  • Encourage students to deepen their thinking. (Examples: "How well do the details of Rain School support the lesson of the story? Can you give an example? I'll give you a minute to think and write or sketch" and "What is the effect of the line 'This is the moment they have been waiting for'? I'll give you a minute to think and write or sketch" and "Can you say more about that? I'll give you a minute to think and write or sketch.")

For heavier support:

  • Encourage students to push their thinking. (Example: "Can you describe the details of Rain School that support the lesson of the story? Can you give an example?" One detail that supports the lesson of the story is _____.)
  • Adapt work with the vocabulary log by adding other elements that may further help students develop their knowledge of a word. Example:

Chart Here

  • Partially fill in the Close Read note-catcher with sentence starters. Alternatively, complete the Close Read note-catcher, cut it into strips, and allow students to match the detail to how it communicates the lesson as you complete the close read.
  • In preparation for the Mid-Unit 1 Assessment, encourage students to politely stop you or their peers when they don't understand what is being said. Examples: "Sorry, I'm not sure I understand. Could you say that again?" and "What do you mean by that? Can you give an example?"
  • Also encourage them to initiate and extend conversations. Examples: "I'd like to share something. I think that _____."

Universal Design for Learning

  • Multiple Means of Representation: This lesson asks students to use strategies to figure out the meaning of unknown vocabulary and to read closely. In addition to naming these strategies, some students may need more explicit examples of how to put them into practice. Provide multiple think-alouds from teachers or peers about how these strategies can be applied to authentic texts.
  • Multiple Means of Action and Expression: A barrier to recounting for some students may be their expressive language skills. Consider allowing students to recount in nonverbal way (e.g., miming, acting out the story, writing a graphic novel). Offering choice of representation will also build students' engagement.
  • Multiple Means of Engagement: Whenever possible, offer students choice in how they demonstrate their knowledge. This encourages them to take ownership of their learning. Consider offering choice in the format of the graphic organizers that students use or in the way they recount the story.

Vocabulary

Key: Lesson-Specific Vocabulary (L); Text-Specific Vocabulary (T); Vocabulary Used in Writing (W)

  • affix, conveyed, explicitly, prefix, root, suffix (L)
  • sapling (T)

Materials

  • Vocabulary logs (one per student)
  • Glue sticks (one per student)
  • Academic vocabulary form (one per student and one to display)
  • Topical vocabulary form (one per student)
  • Close Readers Do These Things anchor chart (from Lesson 3)
  • Equity sticks (class set; one per student)
  • Rain School (book; from Lesson 4; one per student)
  • Reading for Gist and Recounting the Story: Rain School (from Lesson 4; one per student)
  • Close Read Note-catcher: Rain School (one per student)
  • Close Reading Guide: Rain School (for teacher reference)
    • Play-dough (optional; for students to use during Work Time A; see Close Reading Guide)
    • Drinking straws (optional; for students to use during Work Time A; see Close Reading Guide)
  • Red, yellow, and green objects (one of each per student)

Assessment

Each unit in the 3-5 Language Arts Curriculum has two standards-based assessments built in, one mid-unit assessment and one end of unit assessment. The module concludes with a performance task at the end of Unit 3 to synthesize their understanding of what they accomplished through supported, standards-based writing.

Opening

OpeningMeeting Students' Needs

A. Launching Vocabulary Logs (15 minutes)

  • Distribute vocabulary logs and glue sticks.
  • Explain that students will record academic vocabulary in the front of the vocabulary log and topical vocabulary in the back.
  • Distribute academic vocabulary forms for students to put in the front of their vocabulary logs.
  • Guide students through using the glue sticks to adhere the academic vocabulary forms in the front of their vocabulary logs.
  • Distribute topical vocabulary forms and follow this same process to adhere these forms in the back of students' vocabulary logs.
  • Read the definitions of academic vocabulary and topical vocabulary at the top of each form.
  • Explain that as students read their independent reading books, they will encounter different kinds of words.
  • Focus them on the words academic and topical.
  • Point out that both of these words are adjectives. They describe the type of vocabulary words that should go on each vocabulary form. On the topical vocabulary form, students will list words related to the topic of overcoming learning challenges. Emphasize that the word topic is part of the word topical. Topic is a noun, and topical is an adjective. Some examples might include fluency and accuracy.
  • On the academic vocabulary form, they will list words that aren't as specialized as the topical vocabulary words but are still important to their learning. Some examples might include challenges and analyze.
  • Reassure students that you will work more with these forms and they will have plenty of time to practice using them.
  • For ELLs and students who may need additional support with comprehension: To ensure that the purpose of the vocabulary log is clear, prompt students with a Goal 1 Conversation Cue. Ask:

"Can you say more about why we are using this vocabulary log? I'll give you a minute to think and write or sketch." (Responses will vary, but may include: to expand my knowledge and use of the word; to relate the word to a meaningful, larger context; to create a personalized reference for new words; to reinforce what we read by visualizing and writing it.) (MME)

  • For ELLs and students who may need additional support with comprehension: Encourage students to explain how academic and topical vocabulary are different and to identify an example of each in their independent research book. Consider making an anchor chart with a Venn diagram to capture student responses. (MMR)
  • For students who may need additional support with fine motor skills: Offer choice with Reading for Gist and Recounting the Story: Rain School by providing a template that includes lines. (MMR, MME)

B. Reviewing Learning Targets (10 minutes)

  • Direct students' attention to the posted learning targets and select a volunteer to read them aloud:

 "I can refer to the text explicitly to answer questions about Rain School."

 "I can explain how the central message, lesson, or moral is conveyed through details in Rain School."

  • Underline the word explicitly in the first learning target.
  • Ask students to turn and talk, and cold call students to share their responses with the whole group:

"Explicitly is a new word for most of you. What strategies can you use to figure out the meaning of new words?"

  • As students share out, connect to the strategies on the Close Readers Do These Things anchor chart.
  • Ensure students understand that they can use affixes and roots to determine the meaning of unfamiliar words.
  • Explain what affixes are (letters added to the beginning or end of a word that affect the meaning).
  • Write the word uncomfortable on the board and create a table similar to the one below.
  • Using equity sticks, invite responses from the group:

"What is the root of uncomfortable?"

  • Record the root in the table.

Chart Here

  • Focus students on the letters before comfort and explain that this is called a prefix (letters added to the front of the word to change the meaning). Record the prefix on the table, as above.
  • Focus students on the letters after the word comfort and explain that this is called a suffix (letters added to the end of the word to change the meaning). Record the suffix on the table, as above.
  • Invite students to select a strategy to identify the meaning of the words explicitly (stated clearly and in detail).
  • Display an academic vocabulary formand model recording this word on it.
  • Invite students to do the same on the academic vocabulary form in the front of their vocabulary logs.
  • Repeat this process with the word conveyed (make an idea understandable).
  • Add affix, root, prefix, and suffix to the Academic Word Wall.
  • For ELLs and students who may need additional support with new vocabulary: Repeat Opening B with additional unfamiliar words (e.g., refer, explain). (MMR)
  • For students who may need additional support with using vocabulary strategies: Think aloud to demonstrate the strategies that the class generates to figure out the meaning of a word. (MMR)
  • For ELLs: Invite students to add translations of the words in their home languages, using a different color, next to the target vocabulary on the Word Wall.

Work Time

Work TimeMeeting Students' Needs

A. Close Reading: Rain School, Pages 5-13 (25 minutes)

  • Remind students that in the previous lesson, they read Rain School for gist and to recount what happens in the story.
  • Invite students to retrieve their copy of Rain School and their Reading for Gist and Recounting the Story Note-catcher: Rain School.
  • Move students into predetermined pairs and invite them to label themselves partner A and partner B.
  • Explain that students are going to recount the story to their partner using their note-catcher. Give them 2 minutes to look through their book and note-catcher and to think silently.
  • Tell students that each partner will have 1 minute to recount the story and that partner B will go first.
  • Invite partner B to begin sharing.
  • After 1 minute, invite students to switch roles.
  • Refocus students whole group.
  • Invite students to Think-Pair-Share, leaving adequate time for each partner to think, ask the question to their partner, and partner share:

"What message or lesson do you think the author wants you to learn or take away from this story? What details make you think that?" (Responses will vary, but may include: Education and learning are important enough for students to build a school to be able to learn.)

  • If productive, use a Goal 1 Conversation Cue to encourage students to expand the conversation about the message and how the details convey it:

"Can you say more about that?" (Responses will vary.)

  • Invite students to revisit the lesson or message that they underlined on their Reading for Gist and Recounting the Story note-catcher in the previous lesson.
  • Distribute the Close Read Note-catcher: Rain School and read aloud each of the boxes.
  • Focus students on the message recorded in the box at the top and explain that throughout this close read, they will identify details from an excerpt of the text that help to convey, or communicate, this message. Tell students that they will record notes on this note-catcher, and that notes help them remember their thinking and do not have to be full sentences.
  • Tell students you are going to guide them through this close read. Some of the questions will be discussed as a whole group, and others will be discussed with a partner.
  • Guide students through the close read using the Close Reading Guide: Rain School (for teacher reference).
  • Refer to the guide for the use of the optional play-dough and drinking straws.
  • Direct students' attention to the learning targets:
  • Tell students they are now going to use the Red Light, Green Light protocol to reflect on their learning.
  • Distribute red, yellow, and green objects.
  • Invite a student to read the first learning target.
  • Ask students to place the color on their desks that best describes their comfort level or readiness with that target. Remind them what each color means as necessary. (red = stuck or not ready; yellow = need support soon; green = ready to start)
  • Note students showing red or yellow objects so you can check in with them.
  • Repeat with the next learning target.
  • For ELLs and students who may need additional support with recounting: Model and think aloud using the Reading for Gist and Recounting the Story note-catcher to retell Rain School. (MMR)
  • Consider allowing students to retell the story in multiple ways (e.g., miming the story or making a graphic novel). (MME, MMAE)
  • For ELLs: After recounting Rain School and in preparation for the close read, encourage deeper conversation about Thomas's challenge. (Example: "What detail in the text best describes Thomas's challenge?")
  • For ELLs and students who may need additional support with comprehension: Display and repeat the questions you pose and the message in the box at the top of the note-catcher. Rephrase all of them. (Example: "The author is trying to teach us something in Rain School. What is he trying to teach us? How do you know? Can you point to a detail in the story?") (MMR)
  • For ELLs and students who may need additional support with comprehension: Prepare sticky notes with prewritten words or drawings based on the gist of different sections of the text for students who continue to struggle with the gist. As students listen to the story, they can match the gist represented on the sticky notes with each section of the close read. (MMAE)
  • For students who may need additional support with fine motor skills: Offer choice with the Close Read note-catcher by providing a template that includes lines. (MMR, MME)

Closing & Assessments

ClosingMeeting Students' Needs

A. Reflecting on Learning (10 minutes)

  • Direct students' attention to the Close Readers Do These Things anchor chart.
  • Ask students to turn and talk, and cold call students to share their responses with the whole group:

"What strategies did you use today to help you read closely to answer the questions?" (Responses will vary, but could include going back to the text to find answers to the questions and talking with their partner about answers they find.)

"How did these strategies help us to better understand the text?"

  • As students share out, connect their responses to the strategies on Close Readers Do These Things anchor chart.
  • Consider having peer models do a think-aloud to demonstrate the strategies that they used in today's lesson. (MMR)

Homework

HomeworkMeeting Students' Needs

A. Complete Affixes Practice I in your Unit 1 homework.

  •  Read your research book for at least 10 minutes and record any new vocabulary in your vocabulary log.
  • For ELLs: Choose from these strategies to practice reading unfamiliar texts:

- Chunk the text into manageable amounts, e.g., sentences or paragraphs.

- Underline important people, places, and things.

- Read aloud.

- Read repeatedly.

- Silently paraphrase the chunks.

- Summarize what you read for someone else, perhaps first in your home language.

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