Thursday, August 11, 2016

The Reading Strategies Book Club: Goal 8

I'm joining up with fellow bloggers again to review the book: The Reading Strategies Book by Jennifer Serravallo!  

Schoolhouse Treasures Reviews The Reading Strategies Book: Goal 8

Thank you to those who have joined me for previous posts in this book study.  If you're new this week, you might want to go back and read the following:

Goal 7 - HERE
Goal 6 - HERE
Goal 5 - HERE
To see with the introduction and the first 4 chapters (which I missed) click {HERE}.  This link brings you to Kelly Malloy's site An Apple For The Teacher

This week we are taking a look at goal 8: 

Determining Main Topics and Ideas (nonfiction)

Schoolhouse Treasures Reviews The Reading Strategies Book: Goal 8 

Why is this goal important?
Students need to know more about the main idea or topic of what they read in nonfiction.  Comprehension of nonfiction text is more than just being able to recall a couple of interesting facts'  This goal is about learning how to understand the entire section of text.  As students progress through to higher reading levels, the text may have multiple main ideas and the need for nonfiction comprehension is critical.

How to tell if your students need to practice this skill:
Jennifer gives several ideas for how to assess students in this skill both formal and informal methods.  You'll know a student needs practice when they can't give you the main idea of the whole text or article; if they give you only a few facts or only give the main idea of a part of the text.

Here's the 1st strategy I've chosen to spotlight this week:

Schoolhouse Treasures Reviews The Reading Strategies Book: Goal 8

8.2 "Notice What Repeats"
Who is it for: Levels A-I
What Genre/Text: Nonfiction
Skills Used: determining importance
Students would use this strategy to figure out what a book is mostly about and it involves looking and paying attention to what is repeating on each page.
Jennifer uses a picture from a book about ostriches to show this strategy.  The pictures and text repeatedly uses and shows information about the ostrich's nest.  In the example there are sticky notes with arrows pointing to each section that shows the repetition.  That's a clue that the main idea of this section is ostrich lay eggs in nests that are different from other birds.

Jennifer also briefly explains the different between main topic and main idea.  In early reading levels, (before level J), books have a main topic.  Main idea is more than the main topic.  For example in the above ostrich example: 
Main topic is Ostriches
Main idea is an ostrich has a different kind of nest than most other birds.
NOTE: the author says that for students at the lower levels expecting them to identify main idea may be too difficult; identifying the main topic is sufficient.

Prompt students to notice what repeats - on the page, in text, the pictures.  Have them look for what's the same and use that to state the main idea/topic.

Here's the 2nd strategy I chose:

Schoolhouse Treasures Reviews The Reading Strategies Book: Goal 8

8.2 "Opinion - Reasons - Evidence"
Who is it for: Levels M-Z+
What Genre/Text: Expository nonfiction
Skills Used: determining importance, synthesizing

This strategy involves noticing how the text is organized.  Sometimes the author may come right out and express their opinion and then offers the details 
the author may start with details and then the author concludes with an opinion.

Paying attention to and following the structure of the evidence, reasons, and opinion will help you to identify the main idea.

I created a poster based on the example shown in the book:

Schoolhouse Treasures Reviews The Reading Strategies Book: Goal 8

Click {HERE} to download the PDF file for this poster.

Finally, the 3rd strategy I chose to talk about today:

Schoolhouse Treasures Reviews The Reading Strategies Book: Goal 8

8.18 "Shrink A Text With a Partner"
Who is it for: Levels M-Z+
What Genre/Text: nonfiction
Skills Used: summarizing, determining importance

This strategy involves reading a section of text with a partner.  Together decide what the main idea is and shrink it down into 1 sentence!

After students have practice doing this with partners several times and are successful, then the author suggests having students work independently.

Steps to this strategy.:
Read a chunk of text.
Stop & decide the main idea with your partner.
Say the main idea in 1 sentence.

I've created a worksheet that I plan to use with my class:

Schoolhouse Treasures Reviews The Reading Strategies Book: Goal 8

Click {HERE} to get a PDF of the worksheet!

I hope you learned something new or got an idea from this post!  I'd love to hear your thoughts or comments below.

There's still time to join us in reading this book!  Get your own copy {HERE}

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