Tackling Complex Texts with Think Tank Groups, Silent Gallery Walks, Noticings, and Reflections

Last week, four sections (two Honors Level and two CP) of my 11th ELA took on the challenge of deconstructing our reading of an excerpt of Thomas Paine's The Crisis, Number 1 as we explore examples of persuasive texts across time periods and around themes of resilience and resistance. Our primary essential questions included: How [...]

Deconstructing Mentor Texts for Our Own Writing: Research-Based Informational Writing In the Wild

My seniors have completed their research on their self-selected topics related to the Future of Work (see blog for previous posts); we have gone deep with our inquiry work as we have worked on this for the most part of the first nine weeks of the semester while sprinkling in some other writing studies and [...]

Notebook Time: From Individual Writing to Think Tank Collaboration and Sharing

We are wading into our next unit and looking at a variety of essential questions across different time periods and genres in my 11th English Language Arts classes.  To set us up for work we'll be doing with some selections from Thomas Paine in the next few days, last week we began with our latest [...]

Visualizing Our Research with Sticky Notes

My seniors, who have been researching  their self-selected topics under the umbrella of "The Future of Work," have completed their first round of research.  We had roughly four days (we meet for 90 minute blocks) to delve into our research guide.   Students formed Birds of Feather groups by interest and designed their research questions [...]

Notebook Invitations, a Carousel Walk, and 3-2-1 Reflections: A Living KWL and Formative Assessment for Instructional Design

For roughly two and half weeks in August, my seniors have been mucking around and exploring topics related to the future of work through reading frenzies, reading rumbles, birds of feather groups formation with compass points discussion and question planning, and a philosophical chairs discussion. The Writer's Notebook Invitation This past Wednesday, August 30, we [...]

Gettin’ Sticky With It: Post-It Notes for Formative Assessment, Sharing, Meaning Making, and Noticing

During the week of August 14-21,we read and discussed together the following Native American selections in all of my 11th Language Arts classes: "The Earth on Turtle’s Back" "When Grizzlies Walked Upright" from The Iroquois Constitution During that week we engaged in a good bit of collaborative work with station work and partner created Venn [...]

Welcome to the Hot Seat: Philosophical Chairs for Participatory Discussions

As we move forward with our inquiry into the future of work, students have formed birds of feather interest groups this week.  Since roughly half the class is interested in artificial intelligence as well as robotics, and other groups have topic areas impacted by these technologies, I thought it would be helpful to have students [...]

Y’all Ready for This? Second Helpings Reading Rumble with Informational Text

Today we reflected on our thinking from Wednesday's reading frenzy that gave us a chance to explore 30+ articles on the future of work before taking a second pass or helping of reading of the articles with a reading rumble. First, we began with Writer's Notebook 4: We also took our questions about the future [...]

Inquiring into the Future of Work with a Reading Frenzy and Speed Dating Share Time

Essential Questions: • What trends and technology are shaping the future of work? • How might the future of work impact the decisions we make today? Warm-Up: Writer’s Notebook #3   Standards for Learning/AKS: Reading Informational Text LA12.B.19: read and comprehend literary nonfiction in the grades 11–CCR text complexity band proficiently, with scaffolding as needed at [...]

Igniting Inquiry with Writer’s Notebooks, Conversations, Reading Stations, and See-Think-Wonder

This week (Tuesday and Wednesday) we have kicked off our first unit of study (early American literature) and the overarching question for our course, "What is an American?"  We will take an inquiry stance on this big question and think about the range of possibilities through the lenses of texts we read from the canon [...]