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Annotating Text

Teaching close reading of text

debbie Kramer

on 5 February 2014

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Transcript of Annotating Text

Annotating Text
What is Annotation?
Annotate - v. To furnish (a literary work) with critical commentary or explanatory notes
As you read, engage the text by asking questions, commenting on meaning, marking events and passages you want to revisit.
There are a number of procedural expectations that make annotation practical and effective:
The Process
First, implement a consistent system. Use the same abbreviations and symbols every time you annotate
Second, have a pencil close at hand
Third, be disciplined
b/c = because
+ = and
w/ = with
w/o = without
b/t = between
e.g. = for example
ex = example
info = information
b/4 = before
In short, ANNOTATING your text is like
having a conversation with it.
This active engagement with the text will allow you to comprehend and remember more of what you read, and it will allow you to refer to specifics within the story or informational text.
Other Ideas to consider when annotating:
Circling or boxing unfamiliar words
Underlining key words, phrases, or sentences
Bracketing main ideas
Jotting notes in the margin (understandings, questions, inferences, observations)
Drawing arrows to ideas that connect
Using an asterisk to identify a particular recurring element or rhetorical strategies noticed.
Write brief comments whenever possible to make these connections clear and to note any evolution or development.
On the inside cover of the book, keep a list of the characters you encounter, the page on which the first appear, and a very brief description of each.
Within the text of the book, underline or otherwise note anything that strikes you as important, significant, memorable, etc. If possible and profitable, write brief comments within the side margins that indicate your motivation in underlining.
Annotation is a discrete skill, and like any skill, it takes significant practice to hone your ability to the point of acquiring expertise.

Annotation symbols:
(See Handout for exact symbols)
yes! = I agree
x = I disagree ∴
"therefore symbol"=connection to
[ ] = evidence ⊕
+ = thesis
"check mark" = interesting fact
! = surprising
==> = therefore
? = I don’t understand
* = this is important
"Box around word" = New vocabulary
Full transcript