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Reading Comprehension--Report to the Principal by Jerry Spinelli

Paula Kirkpatrick, Reading Component Project, University of New England, EDU 740
by Paula Kirkpatrick on 16 September 2012

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Transcript of Reading Comprehension--Report to the Principal by Jerry Spinelli

Reading to Understand:
Report to the Principal's Office, by Jerry Spinelli

Goal: to help students engage in the book, gain clues from the physical book, and implant vocabulary
Objective: Students will be able to identify the setting of a book based on evidence provided in the physical aspects of a book; Students will be able to identify the genre of a book based on description/book summary.
Materials Needed: text

1. Teacher introduces the book "Report to the Principal's Office" by first exploring the cover of the book. Teacher will encourage students to use the cover of the book to preview. . . A possible opening for conversation might be, "I wonder about the setting of this book. . .. "
2. Teacher and students read the back of the book to preview genre (and more importantly to my group of middle school students. . .) the level of comedy involved. Possible conversation starters could be "What do we already know about this book?" or "What a mixed group of kids here. What do you think the book will be about?"
3. Vocabulary : Teacher and students find new vocabulary on the front and back covers of the book. Start a word wall--or an e word wall (see Narkon et al., 2011, pp 38-45)--for this book.
4. Student Activity: (adaptation of "Motivation/Engagement") Students can create Introduction Posters for the book they are reading. They should include a picture to represent the book as well as important features/facts that they have discovered. Students should also include questions about the things they would like to get to "know" about the book, leaving spaces to include the answers. PREVIEW--just like the movies Predict 2 Column Note Prediction (adaptation from Ellery, p. 186)

Goal: Student will be able to communicate and support his/her and predictions.
Objective: Student will be able to identify use text clues to predict events
Materials Needed: text, poster/butcher paper, markers

1. Create a two-column note from large butcher paper.
2. Left column should be labeled "Predictions (what I think will happen):
3. Right column should read "why I think that"
4. Ask the group to create a summary of what happened in the chapter (what happened in the beginning, middle, end)
5. Student Activity: Give students a moment to formulate their predictions. Using the summary as a guide, ask students to complete the class chart Just for fun: you might consider creating a bulletin board entitled "My favorite Part." Allow students to react to the book by jotting down their favorite moment, quote, or picture from the book. Making Connections Ideas Big and.... ... small

Goal: to help the student become an involved reader by creating connections between self and the text.
Objective: Student will be able to communicate self/text connections.
Materials: Book, "connect and reflect" sheet

1. Explain that a text to self connection is made when something in the story reminds you of something in your life.
2. Model text to self connections. Possible teacher talk could be, "this reminds me of when. . . . . I just make a text
to self connection."
3. Distribute the text to self puzzle pieces from the "connect and reflect" sheet and have students illustrate/write an
even from the text on one piece and their connection on another. Possible teacher talk could be, "What made the
event so memorable?"
4. Have students share their connections and puzzle pieces.

Motivation/Engagement: Use the puzzle pieces for text to text connections (related books, movies, etc)
and text to world connections (current events, historical events, etc) Just for fun: As you preview each chapter, create a wordle (www.wordle.com) of new vocabulary. Ideas Big and.... ... small Just for fun: Create a bulletin board celebrating connections. Put the title of the book (maybe even a drawing of the book cover or a student drawn scene from the book) in the center. Ask students to write or otherwise put their connections on colored paper (maybe in funky shapes) that they can then attach to the Connections wall. Draw arrows from the connections to the picture to further illustrate the idea of text to self connection. Ideas Big and.... ... small Differentiation
1. change headings for on the 2 column note so that they are easier to understand.
2. Pair difficult words with pictures to aid in understanding and vocabulary retention.
3. Use sentence starters to help the group create the summary. Examples of sentence starters could be: “In the beginning of the chapter (character name). . . . ,” “then (character name). . . . . .,” “at the end . . . .”
4. Allow students to “talk out” their summary and their predictions with teacher acting as the scribe.
1. The Definition of setting—and a list of examples/options—can be posted on the board to help students identify the book's setting.
2. The teacher can provide students with a handout describing and providing examples of the various genres. Note: This lesson is intended for a small group consisting of approximately four (4) Special Education students, currently attending a public middle school in rural Maine. The students range from grades six (6) through eight (8) and have read similarly leveled books with teacher assistance. Based in the Behavioral Skills and the Life Skills classrooms, each of the students are identified with a combination of Emotional Disabilities and Specific Learning Disabilities. Although the targeted audience for this lesson is as described above, I believe that the lesson could easily be utilized by other populations with minimal adjustments. Resources "Predicting motivates students and helps them form a purpose for reading" (Stricklin, 2011, p. 620). An involved reader finds the connections between the text, himself and the world around him. 1. Be sure to allow adequate time for processing.
2. Provide visual cues and prompts to help student make
optimal growth during the lesson.
3. Provide students with completed examples of the puzzle so
that they have a clear understanding of the desired outcome. Differentiation Differentiation Ellery, Valerie. (2009). Creating Strategic Readers: Techniques for developing competency in phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension. International Reading Association.

Narkon, Drue E; Wells, Jenny C; & Segal, Lillian S. ( 2011). E-word wall: An interactive vocabulary instruction tool for students with learning disabilities and autism spectrum disorders. Teaching Exceptional Children, 43(4), 38-45.

Stricklin, Kelley. (2011). Hands-on reciprocal teaching: A comprehensive technique. The Reading Teacher, 64(8), pp. 620–625. Book Introduction (Ellery, 2009, p. 175) Connect and Reflect (Ellery, pp. 178-179) Paula Kirkpatrick
EDU 740
June 22, 2012 Ideas Big and.... ... small Just for fun: Teacher and group could create a horizontal flow chart of correct predictions linking them to events occurring in the book. Such a flow chart might look as follows: WE predict . . . "A"
because . . . We were right/almost right/wrong. . .
"B" happened. Because "x" happened, now we predict
that . . . will happen next.
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