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Core Strategies: Reading with Purpose

River Dell High School

jonna gilfus

on 12 September 2014

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Transcript of Core Strategies: Reading with Purpose

“It was the first time I looked at a book and saw a brown, black, beige character — a character who resembled me physically and resembled me spiritually, in all his gorgeous loneliness and splendid isolation,”
Reading with Purpose
~Sherman Alexie thanking Ezra Jack Keats, author of “The Snowy Day"
Core Strategies:
Do More with Less
Link Writing to Reading
Slow Down
History Textbook
Reading with purpose always involves writing, and
writing to LEARN
, and this has perhaps never been a more easily grasped concept for students than it is today, thanks in part to new mediums such as YouTube and other social networking sites. Use the new read-write cultural shifts to encourage response-- help students learn that good readers "talk back" to texts, and see themselves as important parts of a larger "conversation" on whatever they are reading.
Example: A Class Blog...
Help students
learn to make new
choices as readers. Teach them to be "flexible readers" --to slow down when the reading task calls for this. Expedience is not always a good thing...
Reading with Purpose
Ask Different Questions
Questions are at the center of reading, but as Michael Wesch pointed out, many of our students are asking "the worst kind of questions."
Provide students with opportunities to ask "how" and "why" questions, not just "what" and "when."
Teach them how to ask and
answer those questions.
3 minute Remix Clip
An Example
Shift to the Conceptual
So much of teaching has been shifted toward "coverage"--whether we agree with it or not...
But the reading & writing required for higher level learning, like analysis and synthesis, requires students to establish a full understanding of a text, even if it's a smaller part.
Example: Consider the somewhat
counterintuitive move of LIMITING
the number of sources a student can
use in her research.
Students who find a larger conceptual frame of reference for what they read and write are much more likely not only to be motivated, but also to understand and develop ideas.
Help students find ways to connect to the texts they encounter, and to connect what they are reading to other texts and experiences in the world.
This textbook reading assignment about the "Trail of Tears" may have
little or no conceptual resonance, depending on a student's experiences.
Some "quick & dirty research" and a brief encounter with visual & aural representations of the time helps the student develop a conceptual grasp of the larger history and the reasons people still read and care about what happened.
YouTube Clip Remix
An example:
Use the premise of a feature like NPR's "Science Friday" as an alternative review tool for reading, so that students can learn to ask and answer questions themselves!

"We don’t see things as they are; we see things as we are."
This quote suggests that what we see depends as much on ourselves as it does on the world around us. We know that:

Seeing is subjective: Each of us sees the world differently.
Seeing is active: Our eyes and brains construct the world we see.
Seeing is interpreting light: Light carries information into our eyes.

But we’re still learning about this intricate yet incomplete way of experiencing the world.

(~from Introduction to Seeing; Exploratorium. National Science Foundation)
Example: Ask students to
think about two texts (no pun intended!) that have a similar topic, but very different
purposes and audiences, and ask them to notice the difference in the approaches to each they must take as a reader, and why. Remind them of what they learned about flexibility and slowing down as you assign readings.
What do YOU value in Student writing?
Writing to Learn/
Writing Rhetorically
Full transcript