Peer Critique for Organization and Language | EL Education Curriculum

You are here

ELA G4:M2:U3:L6

Peer Critique for Organization and Language

You are here:

These are the CCS Standards addressed in this lesson:

  • RI.4.9: Integrate information from two texts on the same topic in order to write or speak about the subject knowledgeably.
  • RI.4.10: By the end of year, read and comprehend informational texts, including history/social studies, science, and technical texts, in the grades 4-5 text complexity band proficiently, with scaffolding as needed at the high end of the range.
  • RL.4.10: By the end of the year, read and comprehend literature, including stories, dramas, and poetry, in the grades 4-5 text complexity band proficiently, with scaffolding as needed at the high end of the range.
  • W.4.3: Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, descriptive details, and clear event sequences.
  • W.4.3a: Orient the reader by establishing a situation and introducing a narrator and/or characters; organize an event sequence that unfolds naturally.
  • W.4.3d: Use concrete words and phrases and sensory details to convey experiences and events precisely.
  • W.4.3e: Provide a conclusion that follows from the narrated experiences or events.
  • W.4.4: Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development and organization are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
  • W.4.5: With guidance and support from peers and adults, develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, and editing.
  • SL.4.1: Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grade 4 topics and texts, building on others' ideas and expressing their own clearly.
  • L.4.3: Use knowledge of language and its conventions when writing, speaking, reading, or listening.
  • L.4.3a: Choose words and phrases to convey ideas precisely.
  • L.4.6: Acquire and use accurately grade-appropriate general academic and domain-specific words and phrases, including those that signal precise actions, emotions, or states of being (e.g., quizzed, whined, stammered) and that are basic to a particular topic (e.g., wildlife, conservation, and endangered when discussing animal preservation).

Daily Learning Targets

  • I can organize a plot for a narrative using events based on research of my animal and its defense mechanisms. (RI.4.9, W.4.3a, W.4.3d, W.4.3e, W.4.4, W.4.5)
  • I can critique the ideas of my writing partner's Narrative Planning graphic organizer for the characteristics of a narrative. This means I can look for a plan for the characters, setting, introduction, rising action, problem, resolution, and conclusion, and for precise words and phrases. (RI.4.9, W.4.3a, W.4.3d, W.4.3e, W.4.5, SL.4.1, L.4.3a, L.4.6)

Ongoing Assessment

  • Independent reading journals (RI.4.10, RL.4.10)
  • Narrative Planning graphic organizer (RI.4.9, W.4.3a, W.4.3d, W.4.3e, W.4.4, W.4.5, SL.4.1, L.4.3a, L.4.6)

Agenda

AgendaTeaching Notes

1. Opening

A. Engaging the Writer: Sketching (5 minutes)

B. Reviewing Learning Targets (5 minutes)

2. Work Time 

A. Research Reading Share (20 minutes)

B. Peer Critique (15 minutes)

C. Annotating Plans for Revision (5 minutes)

3. Closing and Assessment 

A. Revising Narrative Plan (10 minutes)

4. Homework 

A. Choose and respond to a narrative QuickWrite prompt from your homework resources for this unit.

B. Accountable Research Reading. Select a prompt to respond to in the front of your independent reading journal.

Purpose of lesson and alignment to standards:

  • In Work Time A, students share what they have read and learned from their independent reading texts. This sharing is designed as another measure for holding students accountable for their research reading completed for homework. This volume of reading promotes students' growing ability to read a variety of literary and informational texts independently and proficiently. (RI.4.10, RL.4.10, SL.4.1)
  • In Work Time B, students use the Praise, Question, Suggestion protocol to provide feedback to partners on their narrative plans. The focus of the critique is on the characteristics of narratives and organization of plot. This protocol was used in Module 1 and should be familiar to students. (RI.4.9, W.4.3a, W.4.3d, W.4.3e, W.4.4, W.4.5, SL.4.1, L.4.3a, L.4.6)
  • The research reading students complete for homework and discuss in this lesson will help to build both their vocabulary and knowledge pertaining to animals and specifically animal defense mechanisms. 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 to describe and make sense of it.
  • Students who finish quickly can provide critique for one another about other narrative techniques discussed in the unit so far, such as descriptive and precise language or character development.
  • In this module, the habit of character focus is working to contribute to a better world. The characteristic they are reminded of in this lesson is: use my strengths as they critique a peer's narrative plan. Students are also reminded of the habit of character, working to become ethical people. The characteristic they are reminded of is: integrity as they share their independent reading.

How it builds on previous work:

  • Students are held accountable for their independent reading and homework by sharing with their peers.
  • Students use what they know about the characteristics of effective narratives to critique one another's narrative plans.
  • Continue to use Goals 1-3 Conversation Cues to promote productive and equitable conversation.

Areas where students may need additional support:

  • Much of this lesson is discussion-based, so students who struggle with oral language and/or auditory processing may need additional support. Consider providing sentence frames for students to refer to during discussions or a note-taking template for students to take notes during discussion.

Assessment Guidance:

  • Refer to the characteristics related to W.4.3a, W.4.3d, W.4.3e of the Narrative Writing Checklist when assessing students' work in this lesson. 
  • Consider using the Speaking and Listening Informal Assessment: Collaborative Discussion Checklist during students' research reading share and peer critique in Work Times A and B. See the Tools page.
  • Consider using the Reading: Foundational Skills Informal Assessment: Phonics and Word Recognition Checklist (Grade 4) to informally assess students during the research reading share in Work Time A. See the Tools page.

Down the road:

  • In Lesson 7, students practice expanding the millipede introduction and participate in a shared writing to draft the millipede narrative. This lesson provides guided practice to prepare students to write a narrative about their own expert group animal for the mid-unit assessment. Students will refer to their revised narrative plans from this lesson when taking the mid-unit assessment in Lesson 8.

In Advance

  • Display the Narrative Texts, Performance Task, Steps for Planning and Drafting My Narrative, Peer Critique Protocol, and Steps for Revising My Writing anchor charts.
  • Prepare a research reading share using with the Independent Reading: Sample Plan document, or using your own independent reading routine.
  • Organize students in pairs to critique each other's writing.
  • Review the Concentric Circles protocol (see Classroom Protocols).
  • Review the Praise, Question, Suggestion protocol (see Classroom Protocols). Students will have used this protocol before but will need support focusing specifically on the Question step in the process.
  • Ask a student if he or she is willing to share his or her writing to help model the Praise, Question, Suggestion protocol.
  • Post: Learning targets.

Tech and Multimedia

  • Work Time B: audio critique: Students record their partners' ideas and feedback in audio through free software or apps such as Audacity or GarageBand.

Supporting English Language Learners

Supports guided in part by CA ELD Standards 4.I.A.1, 4.I.A.2, 4.I.A.3, 4.I.B.5, 4.I.B.6, 4.I.B.7, 4.I.C.10, 4.I.C.11, 4.I.C.12, 4.II.A.1, 4.II.B.5

Important points in the lesson itself

  • The basic design of this lesson supports ELLs with opportunities to orally process their research reading and narrative plan, thus encouraging them to negotiate conversations and adjust their language to communicate more clearly.
  • ELLs may find it challenging to share the work that they completed independently during research reading. Spot-check with students beforehand to make sure they can share something particularly interesting from their reading, as well as share their knowledge of two academic vocabulary words. If students struggle, help them verbalize focused responses during the first part of the research reading share, before they join Concentric Circles.

Levels of support

For lighter support:

  • For Opening A: Invite students to create a model sketch, including labels, to help ELLs who need heavier support to gauge the type of language needed to write their own labels.

For heavier support:

  • Ask students to share what they have accomplished thus far in their narrative structure plan: introducing the character, establishing the setting, describing the rising action, and describing the problem, one resolution, and one conclusion. Discuss what remains: describing a second resolution and conclusion. Then, students will draft the narrative using their plan.
  • As students prepare for the mid-unit assessment, take a moment to celebrate and reflect on the language they've learned in the first six lessons. You might make this a game. Students stand in a circle. Each takes a turn saying specific language they've learned (e.g., I learned how to use because to explain something). If students take more than five seconds to think of a piece of language they learned, they sit down. The last student standing wins. Afterward, say: "Amazing! You have learned so much new language. You are becoming even better English speakers. Congratulations!"

Universal Design for Learning

  • Multiple Means of Representation (MMR): In this lesson, discuss and clarify the language of learning targets to help build academic vocabulary. Give visual learners and students who need support attending to a discussion the opportunity to draw or sketch definitions, act out, or list synonyms for key terms in learning targets, such as organize, plot, narrative, events based on research, specific feedback, critique, and characteristics.
  • Multiple Means of Action & Expression (MMAE): Recall the importance of supporting self-monitoring and executive function skills. In this lesson, facilitate student management of information and resources by allowing students to identify unknown words and record them in their vocabulary log. Also, Modify Expert Group Animal research notebooks for students who need extra support organizing written work or need directions simplified. Give students who may need additional support with writing sentence frames and/or the option to draw their ideas about group norms.
  • Multiple Means of Engagement (MME): Throughout this unit, sustained engagement and effort is essential for student achievement. Some students may need support to remember the goal for the work they are doing during the unit. Recall that students who may struggle with sustained effort and concentration are supported when these reminders are built into the learning environment.

Vocabulary

Key: (L): Lesson-Specific Vocabulary; (T): Text-Specific Vocabulary; (W): Vocabulary used in writing

  • critique, specific, feedback (L)

Materials

  • New sketch page (from Lesson 4; one per student and one to display)
  • Equity sticks
  • Working to Become Ethical People anchor chart (from Module 1)
  • Independent Reading: Sample Plan (see the Tools page)
  • Peer Critique Protocol anchor chart (begun in Module 1)
  • Working to Contribute to a Better World anchor chart (from Unit 1, Lesson 1)
  • Narrative Writing Checklist (from Lesson 3; one per student and one to display)
  • Millipede Narrative Planning graphic organizer (from Lesson 4; one to display; see Teaching Notes)
  • Narrative Planning graphic organizer (one per student and one to display)
  • Sticky notes (several per student)
  • Green colored pencils (one per student)
  • Steps for Revising My Writing anchor chart (begun in Unit 2, Lesson 10)

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. Engaging the Writer: Sketching (5 minutes)

  • Invite students to locate their new sketch page (from Lesson 4). Explain that they will revise their sketches from Lesson 4 to add detail and labels.
  • Tell students to draw at least one detail and three labels for their sketch to further clarify their thinking to the viewer. 
  • Circulate and support as needed. If necessary, prompt students by asking: "What detail can you add to make your sketch clearer?" or "What labels can you add to help your reader better understand the sketch?"
  • Remind students that they will be sketching, revising their sketches, and adding labels and captions throughout the unit.

B. Reviewing Learning Targets (5 minutes)

  • Review the first learning target: 
  • "I can organize a plot for a narrative using events based on research of my animal and its defense mechanisms."
  • Remind students that they have been practicing planning a narrative using the millipede, as well as planning a narrative about their own expert group animal.
  • Read aloud the second learning target: 
  • "I can critique the ideas of my writing partner's Narrative Planning graphic organizer for the characteristics of a narrative. This means I can look for a plan for the characters, setting, introduction, rising action, problem, resolution, and conclusion, and for precise words and phrases." 
  • Ask students what they know already about this target. Give them a chance to talk with a partner about their thinking and then cold call students using equity sticks. Students may recall the critique process from Module 1. Have them share what they recall.
  • Ask students to identify parts of the learning targets that are unfamiliar or confusing. Pay particular attention to the meaning of the word critique as you clarify the targets.
  • Tell students that they will focus their critiques on the characteristics of narratives that they have been discussing over the last several lessons.
  • Explain that before they start the critique, they will have a chance to share what they have been reading and learning from their independent reading books.
  • For ELLs and students who may need additional support with planning: Check student comprehension: "How have you organized the plot for your narrative so far?" (MMR, MMAE)

Work Time

Work TimeMeeting Students' Needs

A. Research Reading Share (20 minutes)

  • Focus students on the Working to Become Ethical People anchor chart. Remind students of: I behave with integrity. This means I am honest and do the right thing, even when it's difficult, because it is the right thing to do.
  • Remind them that this includes doing homework even when there may be other things they want to do after school. Remind them that the purpose of research reading is to build background knowledge and vocabulary on a topic so that they can gradually read more and more complex texts on that topic.
  • Refer to the Independent Reading: Sample Plan to guide students through a research reading review, or use your own routine.
  • For ELLs: As students interact, jot down samples of effective communication. Also jot down one or two common language errors (pervasive, stigmatizing, critical). Share each of these with the class at the end of Work Time A, allowing students to take pride in the effective communication and to correct the errors. Students can add these notes to their language error log.

B. Peer Critique (15 minutes)

  • Tell students that they will use the Praise, Question, Suggestion protocol to give feedback to each other on their Narrative Planning graphic organizers. Remind them that they used this protocol in Module 1.
  • Before the critique begins, review the main components of a successful critique on the Peer Critique Protocol anchor chart. 
  • Briefly review the steps of the protocol on the anchor chart.
  • Focus students on the Working to Contribute to a Better World anchor chart, specifically use my strengths. Remind students that as they should use their strengths to help their partner improve their narrative plan during the peer critique.
  • Invite students to take out their copies of the Narrative Writing Checklist. Explain that students will be referring to these criteria as they listen to their partner.
  • As a whole group, model the protocol process with the Millipede Narrative Planning graphic organizer. (Use a student's actual graphic organizer if possible. If not, model using a graphic organizer of your own.)
  • Ask the student volunteer to read his or her paragraphs on the planning organizer aloud, slowly, to the class. Ask the students to think about the responses they might provide using the sentence stems on the anchor chart if they need to. 
  • Call on some students to provide praise and a suggestion and help students to refine their praise and suggestion to make them as useful as possible.
  • Distribute sticky notes and explain that the listening student will document feedback on sticky notes and give them to the presenter.
  • Invite students to take out their Narrative Planning graphic organizers, to pair up with someone and to follow the steps of the protocol on the anchor chart to provide feedback to their partner. 
  • Circulate to support partners as they exchange feedback. Remind students to focus on giving feedback about how the events develop and are organized, as well as precise words and phrases.
  • For students who may need additional support with organizing their ideas: Provide a personal copy of the list of revision question ideas to use during the Praise, Question, Suggestion protocol. (MMAE)
  • For ELLs: Encourage students to raise their hand and ask clarification questions when they don't understand part of the process or want to check whether others understand them. Provide students with clarification sentence frames:
    • "I'm sorry, but could you say that again, slowly?"
    • "I don't understand the part about _____."
    • "I think I'm confused. Could you show me how to do that part?"
    • "Do you understand what I'm saying?"

C. Annotating Plans for Revision (5 minutes)

  • Refocus the group. Be sure that every student has a green colored pencil. Post the Steps for Revising My Writing anchor chart:

1. Choose the correct colored pencil. Today's color is _____.

2. Decide where you are going to add a revision note based on feedback or new learning.

3. Write your revision note in the space above the notes you want to change. 

4. Read through your entire plan and continue to record your revision notes.

5. Review your revision notes to be sure they make sense.

  • Ask students to add notes to their Narrative Planning graphic organizers using the green colored pencils. Circulate to confer and support as needed.
  • Strategically pair students for the Praise, Question, Suggestion protocol to ensure helpful, respectful support for those students who struggle with taking feedback and writing revision notes based on that feedback.  (MMAE, MME)

Closing & Assessments

ClosingMeeting Students' Needs

A. Revising Narrative Plan (10 minutes) 

  • Invite students to begin revising their plans based on their partners' feedback and revision notes from Work Time B.
  • Give students 10 minutes to revise their plans. Circulate to confer and support as needed.
  • If productive, cue students to think about their thinking:

"How does our peer critique add to your understanding of how to write a good narrative plan? I'll give you time to think and discuss with a partner." (Responses will vary.)

  • Focus students on the learning targets. Read each one aloud, pausing after each to use a checking for understanding protocol for students to reflect on their comfort level with or show how close they are to meeting each target. Make note of students who may need additional support with each of the learning targets moving forward.
  • Repeat, inviting students to self-assess how well they used their strengths and showed integrity in this lesson.
  • For ELLs: Check in particular to see that students are using sensory words, precise words, capital letters, and end punctuation correctly, where appropriate. Point to critical errors and see if students can self-correct.

Homework

HomeworkMeeting Students' Needs

A. Choose and respond to a narrative QuickWrite prompt from your homework resources for this unit.

B. Accountable Research Reading. Select a prompt to respond to in the front of your independent reading journal.

  • For ELLs and students who may need additional support with reading and writing: Refer to the suggested homework support in Lesson 1. (MMAE, MMR)

There are no new Supporting Materials for this lesson.

Get updates about our new K-5 curriculum as new materials and tools debut.

Sign Up