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Close Reading and the Common Core

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by

Geri McCann

on 13 March 2013

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Transcript of Close Reading and the Common Core

What is Close Reading? (Definition) The careful and purposeful interpretation of a text, wherein which readers pay close attention to the way ideas unfold as they are read. Purpose? The purpose of close reading:

to build the habits of readers as they engage with complex texts

to build their stamina and skills so they can do so independently In other words-- Close Reading and the CCSS with Dr. Douglas Fisher - Part 2 Close Reading and the CCSS
with Dr. Douglas Fisher A thorough and deliberate rereading of a text that encourages readers to think and to understand what they are reading. They are thinking about what the text says, how the text says it, what the text means, and what the text means to them. Asking text dependent questions will encourage close reading. Close Reading and The Common Core What is it?
Why do we need to do it?
How do we teach it? In an Expert's Words And he goes on to say... Okay, we know what Close Reading is. We know why it is needed--Now, how do we teach it? Because close reading is so time-consuming, select short, worthy passages. The Common Core Standards Suggest:
Literature Informational Text
Short stories Short articles
Fables Biographies
Poetry Personal narratives
Scenes from plays Speeches
Myths Historical documents POSSIBLE QUESTIONS Imagery including comparisons:
Similes
Metaphors
Personification
Figurative Language
Symbols CRAFT TECHNIQUE CRAFT TECHNIQUES AND RELATED QUESTIONS FOR CLOSE READING What is being compared?
 
Why is the comparison effective? (typically because of the clear, strong, or unusual connection between the two)
 
What symbols are present? Why did the author choose these symbols? What word(s) stand out? Why? (typically vivid words, unusual choices, or a contrast to what a reader expects) How do particular words get us to look at characters or events in a particular way?
Do they evoke an emotion?
Did the author use nonstandard English or words in another language? Why? What is the effect?
Are there any words that could have more than one meaning? Why might the author have played with language in this way? Word Choice Tone and Voice What one word describes the tone?

Is the voice formal or informal? If it seems informal, how did the author make it that way? If it's formal, what makes it formal?

Does the voice seem appropriate for the content? Sentence Structure
Short Sentences
Long Sentences
Sentence Fragments
Sentences in which word order is important
Questions What stands out about the way this sentence is written?
Why did the author choose a short sentence here? (for example, so it stands out from sentences around it, for emphasis)
Why did the author make this sentence really long? (for example, to convey the "on and on" sense of the experience.)
Why did the author write a fragment here? (for example, for emphasis or to show a character's thoughts)
Based on the order of the words in this sentence, which word do you think is the most important? Why? What was the author trying to show by placing a particular word in a certain place? Ask text dependent questions And then what? Go beyond "Ho-Hum" Questions -You want your students to take what they learn from one text and apply it to the next. BUT IT'S ABOUT TRANSFER! TEACH STUDENTS TO ASK THE QUESTIONS Four basic questions students can ask themselves as they reflect on a text: What is the author telling me here?
Are there any hard or important words?
What does the author want me to understand?
How does the author play with language to add to meaning? "The teaching of reading veered off track when personal connections began to dominate the teaching and testing of comprehension...often leaving the text itself a distant memory." Nancy Boyles
Coordinator, Graduate Reading Program
Southern Connecticut State University Students do this = less need for you to do all the asking! Ask Students to read with a pencil Annotate the text
Highlight or underline key words or phrases they find surprising, confusing, significant or that raise questions. Underline with a PURPOSE!
Make notes in the margins.
Look for patterns, repetitions, contradictions or similarities in the text. What do they do with it? They: Here is an example of craft techniques to introduce to students to encourage close reading---along with questions to help them explore how an author uses each craft in a text. Have students noticed the details in the passage and can they recount those details in their own words accurately, precisely and clearly?

Paraphrasing is the first stop along the journey to close reading. Hard or important words help students to zoom in on precise meaning.

Once students have a basic grasp of what the author is telling them--they are ready to move on to analyzing the content. If students begin their analysis with this question, they will be ready to make inferences--determining what the author is trying to show without directly stating it. How a text is written is as important as the content itself in getting the author's message across.

Introduce students to some of the tricks authors use to do this. So, in conclusion..... Challenging texts need to be read & reread
Each reading should accomplish a separate purpose
1st Reading: Should allow the reader to determine WHAT A TEXT SAYS
2nd Reading: Should allow the reader to determine HOW A TEXT WORKS
3rd Reading: Should allow the reader to evaluate the QUALITY AND VALUE OF THE TEXT (and to connect the text to other texts) And... All focus is on text meaning
Background prep/explanation is minimized
Students must do the reading/interpretation
Teacher's major role is to ask text dependent questions
There is a multi-day commitment to texts
Students reread with a PURPOSE
Short reads work best
Full transcript