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How to Annotate

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Krystal VanDuysen

on 24 September 2014

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Transcript of How to Annotate

How to Annotate
What does annotating a text mean?
"Interacting" is a funny way to think about how you read a text.

However, most educational researchers agree that interacting with what you read, (writing down thoughts, asking questions, responding to the words you read) is the best way to understand and find meaning in a book.

Annotation is just that:
interacting with your text
finding meaning
in what you read as you read it.

Suggested Abbreviations/Symbols
b/c = because
+ = and
w/ = with
w/o = without
b/t = between
e.g. = for example
ex = example
info = information
b4 = before
= increase, improvement, rising
= decrease, decline, falling
* = important
** = very important
= Upmost importance, crucial to understanding
= change

Let's Practice
While reading the short story "Eleven" by Sandra Cisneros, use text marking and annotations to help you further understand the story.
What Supplies Do You Need?
Annotation: The action of writing comments on a text as a way to further the reader's understanding or identify areas of confusion.
General Guidelines

1) At the top of the page, mark important plot events
2) Circle any unfamiliar words and write definition in the margin
3) Highlight and mark any conflicts that occur with the main character
4) Highlight and mark words and phrases that describe the personality of characters
5) Highlight and mark for yourself any symbolism-(note in the margin what ideas/concepts these tangible items may represent)
6) Don't mark too much. If you mark everything, nothing will stand out!
7) Once you are done reading and annotating- determine the theme and find supporting evidence throughout the text
Annotation - Key Component of Close Reading

Develop a system that works for you!
Techniques are limitless
Use any combination of the following....
Make brief comments in the margins- Use any white space available
Make brief comments between or within lines
Circle or put boxes, triangles, or clouds around words or phrases
Use abbreviations or symbols- brackets, stars, exclamation points, questions marks, numbers, etc.
Connect words, phrases, ideas, circles, boxes, etc. with arrows
Underline key words- but combine with another method such as comment. Don't underline entire passages!
Highlight- Use caution! Don't highlight everything!
Create your own code.
Use post-its if you cannot write on the text

Close Reading: Why Should You Annotate?

Annotating is evidence that you are thinking!
Be sure to include comments along with annotations!

Have conversations with the text
Ask Questions
Comment on actions or development of the characters
Does the character change? Why? How? Result?
Comment on lines/quotations that are important/powerful
Express agreement/disagreement
Summarize key events and make predictions
Connect ideas to each other or other texts
Note if you experience an epiphany
Note anything you would like to discuss or do not understand
Note how the author uses language

Note the significance in:

effects of word choice (diction) or sentence structure or type (syntax)
point of view/effect
repetition of words, phrases, actions, events, patterns
narrative pace, time, order of sequence of events
contrasts, contradictions, juxtapositions, shifts
figures of speech or literary devices
reliability of narrator
motifs or cluster ideas
tone, mood
setting, historical period

Annotation requires the use of
as well as

Utilize a small pencil case to store all of your annotating supplies

If it is not your copy of the book, you will need
sticky notes (post-its)
for your annotations
Why Annotate???
Most common complaint is that annotating slows you down
IT DOES!! That's the point!
If annotating while reading annoys you, read a chapter, then go back and annotate.
Approach the text with an open mind.
Let them inspire you and stretch your imagination!

First, Annotating keeps you awake
Second, active reading is thinking about the text and helps you express those thoughts
Third, writing your reactions down help you remember the thoughts of the author
Marking and Note-Taking Tips
Use one color ink to do initial marking, then go back with another color or colors to mark more thoroughly

Use different colors to track characters, symbols, themes

Underline as you read and take notes in the side margins at least every two pages

Add to side margins notes during discussions
Plot= plot item- use one of the following:

EXP: exposition
TP: turning point
CF: conflict
RA: rising action
CX: climax
FA: falling action
RES: resolution
CH: characterization
S: setting
POV: point of view
TH: Theme
LT: literary term (identify by name- irony, tone, foreshadowing, personification, metaphor, symbol)

What types of annotations did these students use?

How does this make the text more meaningful?

"Eleven" Text-Dependent Questions
1) On pg. 1 the author stated, "Only today I wish I didn't have only eleven years rattling inside me like pennies in a tin can." What does this figurative language mean and how does it affect the tone of the text?

2) Reread the first four paragraphs and note how many times the author starts a sentence with the word "and." Why does the author make this choice?

3) Why does Rachel feel that Mrs. price is "right"? Give evidence from the text to support your answer.

4) How does Rachel feel about the sweater? Include evidence from the text to support your answer.

5) Identify each time Rachel claims, "not mine." Why does the author repeat this refrain throughout the story and how does it affect the overall meaning and tone of the text?

6) In paragraph 5 and the last paragraph, Rachel says she wants to be 102. In each instance, why does Rachel want to be 102?

7) How has Rachel grown older today? Include evidence from the text to support your answer.
September 24, 2014
Do Now: Journal Entry
What is the definition of an embarrassing moment? Describe a situation at school that might embarrass a student your age.
Exit Ticket
Did Rachel do the best thing in an embarrassing situation? Did anyone? What could each character have done differently?
Learn and apply annotating and analysis skills to the short story "Eleven" by Sandra Cisneros by the end of the period.
Full transcript