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Literature Discussion Groups

RDG 532

Melissa Tolson

on 4 February 2013

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Transcript of Literature Discussion Groups

The purpose of this article is to share how some teachers have helped students build their comprehension strategy through peer-led literature discussion. Focusing Literature Discussion Groups on Comprehension Strategies Practice Benefits of allowing students to work together to discuss a reading:
construct meaning and identify the manner in which the meaning was constructed
work together to draw inference
increased oral language development
engagement and enjoyment of literature
feeling of efficacy about the ability to understand and interpret text
the group discussions provide a place for the students to build upon their developing comprehension skills The teacher desired:
provide opportunities for her students to use comprehension strategies
students to identify the strategies as they talked together Goals for the class within this article: Model of Implementing Literature Discussions Day 4: Teacher and students create anchor chart of
desirable behaviors in the groups
Teacher places students in mixed groups
Teacher provides students with strategy prompts to help with scaffolding
Teacher monitors groups closely as students discuss, intervening as necessary to prompt productive discussion and comprehension strategy use By doing this the students would:
understand the particular text in a more detailed manner
apply the comprehension strategy in future readings and texts
be able to activate and employ the strategy intentionally (which takes practice) Day 1: Teacher introduces idea of book discussion

Day 2: Teacher brings in adults to demonstrate
Students observe
Teacher leads discussion on participant talk and behaviors in the model group Day 3: Teacher and 4-5 students discuss a book as
others watch
Teacher facilitates discussion and strategy use as needed
Teacher leads a debriefing of student group Sample Anchor Chart Desirable behaviors in discussion:
Answering questions
Answering questions and telling why you thought what you thought
Listening carefully to other students
If you disagree, saying why
Calling attention to strategies you use
Going back and looking at the text
Undesirable behaviors in discussion
Talking without listening
Giving an answer without telling why
Being a know-it-all
Disrespecting others' opinions Strategy Prompts to Support Discussions When I read, I thought....because....
This is how I used my prior knowledge to help me...
Let's summarize what we know.
What questions did we have as we read along?
How did we use inferences to help ourselves understand?
What connections to other texts do we have?
What different perspectives do we have about....? Throughout the year: Teacher circulates among the groups as
they talk and listens to, guides, and scaffolds the students' strategy use, talk, and group processes as needed
During debriefings of literature discussions., the teacher helps students to refine their use of comprehension strategies in the group processes, language, and behavior Adult Model Discussion Group of adults: Building reading specialist, parent
volunteer, and special education aide
Student teacher was involved to participate in the model discussion group following the reading. Adult example shows reading and discussion skills at more advanced level which provides a model for students to follow.
After the discussion, the teacher leads the group in a debriefing of the discussion they watched, highlighting the places where strategies are invoked, names, or could be noted. Teacher-Involved Demonstration Group Used to facilitate the kind of discussion the teacher desires (by participating)
Teacher prompts students throughout to use the comprehension strategies that arise or she'd like them to use (prior knowledge, etc.)
Teacher intervention helps direct the discussion and students to use strategies in explicit ways and reflect on this use in a public way.
When a student makes a connection (i.e.: prior knowledge) the teacher names is and demonstrates what the student has just done. Independent Discussion Group Small groups work independently.
Following the adult model discussion and after using the teacher assisted group model multiple times.
Students directed to remember the points of the prior discussions with comprehension strategy use and naming.
Students also instructed to use their anchor chart of desired behaviors and lists of strategy prompts in front of them. Conclusion Small-group, peer-led literature discussions can:
contribute significantly to students' knowledge and appreciation of literature
facilitate group processes
promote reading engagement and motivation
development of use and recognition of comprehension processes and strategies (their own and understanding their fellow students') If groups and purpose are designed specifically for this comprehension goal and teachers provide scaffolding and practice, this strategic reading will help students read difficult text with good understanding. Move to literature discussion groups
Using the strategy prompts and sample anchor chart provided on the bookmarks, discuss your book up to this point.
Each person must use one prompt to begin a portion of the discussion
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