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Uvalde literature circles

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Literature Circles in the Classroom: What? Why? and How?

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Uvalde literature circles

  1. 1. Literature Circles in the Classroom: What? Why? and How?
  2. 2. Why Literature Circles? • Choice, independence, personal investment • Collaborative learning • Differentiation, independent reading levels • Lifelong readers • Empowered and literate citizens Source: Mini-Lessons for Literature Circles by Harvey Daniels and Nancy Steineke, p. 3
  3. 3. Literature Circles 101 • Students choose their own reading materials • Small groups (3-6 students) are formed, based upon book choice Note: 4-5 students per group is ideal • Grouping is by text choices, not by “ability” or other tracking • Different groups choose and read different books • Groups meet on a regular, predictable schedule to discuss their reading Source: Mini-Lessons for Literature Circles by Harvey Daniels and Nancy Steineke, pp. 3-4
  4. 4. Literature Circles 101 • Students write notes that help guide both their reading and discussion • Discussion questions come from the students, not teachers or textbooks • Personal responses, connections, and questions are the starting-point of discussion • A spirit of playfulness and sharing pervades the room Source: Mini-Lessons for Literature Circles by Harvey Daniels and Nancy Steineke, p. 4
  5. 5. Literature Circles 101 • Teacher-led mini-lessons serve as bookends, before and after literature circle meetings • The teacher does not lead any group; s/he is a facilitator, fellow reader, and observer • When books are finished, groups share highlights of their reading with the classmates through presentations, reviews, dramatizations, book chats, or other media • Assessment is by teacher observation and student self-evaluation Source: Mini-Lessons for Literature Circles by Harvey Daniels and Nancy Steineke, p. 4
  6. 6. Preparing Students for Literature Circles
  7. 7. Practice Asking Good Questions and Discussing Texts • Read “Eleven” by Sandra Cisneros • Jot down 2 or 3 questions that would be interesting to discuss with your partner • Write each question on a separate sticky note and place on text where you thought of it • Create a T-chart for Lead Questions and Follow-Up Questions • Trade T-chart papers with your partner Adapted from Reading and Writing Together: Collaborative Literacy in Action, “Literature Circles: Getting Them Started and Keeping Them Going” by Nancy Steineke, pp. 130-131
  8. 8. Important Tip: Demo these next steps for your students!
  9. 9. Practicing Asking Lead and Follow-Up Questions 1. Partner A reads his/her question aloud and hands the sticky note to partner B who places it in the Lead Questions column 2. Partner B answers the question 3. Based on partner B’s answer, partner A asks a follow-up question 4. Before answering, partner B writes the follow-up question in the Follow-Up Questions column next to the sticky note 5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 two or three more times 6. Switch roles so that Partner B starts the next round with a Lead Question 7. Repeat until all Lead Questions have been asked and discussed Adapted from Reading and Writing Together: Collaborative Literacy in Action, “Literature Circles: Getting Them Started and Keeping Them Going” by Nancy Steineke, pp. 130-131
  10. 10. What Kinds of Questions Work Best? • With your partner, identify the lead question that produced the most extended and interesting discussion • Share your best questions • Discuss: What kinds of questions work best? Adapted from Reading and Writing Together: Collaborative Literacy in Action, “Literature Circles: Getting Them Started and Keeping Them Going” by Nancy Steineke, pp. 130-131
  11. 11. Your Turn: What Kinds of Questions Work Best? • Open-ended • Related to our personal lives, experiences • Makes connections to rest of text, between elements of the text • Examines author’s purpose or elements of style • Makes predictions, draws conclusion, inference • Could be directly found in the text
  12. 12. What Kinds of Questions Work Best? • They make you think. • There’s more than one possible answer. • It makes you fill in details from your imagination. • It brings up a controversial idea. • It makes you notice something you didn’t before. • It makes you see something in a different way. Source: Reading and Writing Together: Collaborative Literacy in Action, “Literature Circles: Getting Them Started and Keeping Them Going” by Nancy Steineke, p. 131
  13. 13. Getting Literature Circles Started
  14. 14. Before You Begin • Choose 5 or 6 titles (have 6 copies of each) according to a common theme, genre, or author • Books should be similar in length/number of chapters • Books may include various reading levels to meet the goals of differentiated instruction • Familiarize students with different roles • Have students practice asking good questions and discussing texts
  15. 15. Day One • Teacher presents selected books: book talks, read alouds • Students preview books: book pass • Students fill out choice slips with 1st, 2nd, 3rd choices • Arrange groups, prepare role sheets, assign roles for day two
  16. 16. Day Two • Assign groups and roles in each group • Discuss what will be done each day: – Students should come prepared with reading and completed role sheets – Groups will meet and discuss – led by discussion director – Questions? • Give students schedule of reading assignments • Students spend rest of class reading silently
  17. 17. Day Three • Review what will be done each day • Groups meet to discuss and share their roles • Students come together as a whole class; discussion directors share short summary of something significant that was discussed • Teacher reviews reading and role assignments for the next day
  18. 18. Day Four • Questions, concerns, clarifications? • Repeat process from Day Three • Following days are same as Day Four
  19. 19. Literature Circle Roles • Discussion Director/Discussion Leader • Illustrator/Sketcher • Summarizer • Connector/Conflict Connector • Investigator/Fact Finder • Wordsmith/Word Wizard/Word Master/Word Finder/Word Watcher/Vocabulary Enricher/Vocab Detective • Illuminator/Literary Luminary/ Passage Master/Quotation Seeker • Geographer/Travel Tracer/Story Mapper
  20. 20. Literature Circle Roles Role • Discussion Director • Connector • Illustrator • Vocabulary Enricher • Literary Luminary Reading Strategy • Asking questions • Making connections • Visualizing • Determining importance • Noticing author’s craft
  21. 21. Class Schedule for Literature Circles • 5-10 minutes Opening/Mini-Lesson • 20-25 minutes Groups Meet to Discuss • 5-10 minutes Debrief/Closing Source: Mini-Lessons for Literature Circles by Harvey Daniels and Nancy Steineke, p. 12
  22. 22. Mini-Lessons for Literature Circles • Role Sheets • Reading Logs/Journals • Post-Its • Bookmarks • Coding/Annotating the text • Written Conversation • Exit Slips • Save the Last Word for Me (works well for Literary Luminary, Vocabulary Enricher, and Illustrator)
  23. 23. Save the Last Word for Me Preparation • Underline or highlight a line in the text that stands out to you • Jot down a comment or two about the text your highlighted
  24. 24. Save the Last Word for Me Discussion • When it is your turn to share, tell your group where your selection can be found (page, paragraph number), then read the text aloud • Don’t comment yet! – Listen to the others respond to the text you read aloud • You have the “last word” to respond – You can either connect with what others said or just share your initial thoughts
  25. 25. Keeping Literature Circles Going
  26. 26. Troubleshooting Literature Circles • Create norms/establish ground rules • Create anchor charts and/or table cards for discussion skills (looks like, sounds like) • Collaboratively write advice for other students on how to be successful with literature circles • Have students reflect and set goals • Celebrate positive behaviors and growth!
  27. 27. Your Turn: An Ideal Literature Circle Discussion Looks Like • Eye contact • Text in front of them • Student-created questions • Students have supplies • All students looking at text or person speaking • All members of the group present whole time • Taking turns speaking • Nodding agreement • Students have journals, taking notes • Smiling Sounds Like • Using names • One person speaking at a time • Conversation is on topic • Quality questions: academic vocabulary, Bloom’s, text support • Complimenting each other • Disagreeing respectfully (I look at it differently, I believe, another way to think about it) • Fun – laughter, excited voices, enthusiasm • Conversational tone – small group volume • Many voices – one person at each group is talking
  28. 28. Literature Circle Skills • Asking follow-up questions so that people explain their answers in more detail • Being friendly • Staying focused on the group • Listening to everyone’s ideas • Keeping everyone in the group involved • Recognizing members’ good ideas • Welcoming diverse viewpoints • Disagreeing constructively, with confidence and enthusiasm • Extending discussion on a topic • Paraphrasing • Attentive listening • Building on one another’s ideas (piggybacking) • Directing the group’s work • Using the text to support an idea • Asking clarifying questions when confused Source: Mini-Lessons for Literature Circles by Harvey Daniels and Nancy Steineke, p. 54
  29. 29. Literature Circle Skills • Take turns • Listen actively • Make eye contact • Lean forward • Nod, confirm, respond • Share air time • Include everybody • Don’t dominate • Pull other people in • Don’t interrupt • Speak directly to each other • Trust each other • Receive others’ ideas • Be tolerant • Honor people’s ideas • Piggyback on ideas of others • Speak up when you disagree • Respect differences • Disagree constructively • Don’t attack • Stay focused, on task • Be responsible to the group • Support your views with the text Source: Mini-Lessons for Literature Circles by Harvey Daniels and Nancy Steineke, p. 8
  30. 30. Assessment of Literature Circles • Preparation (role sheets) • Participation (observations) • Reading Responses (journals) • Final Project • Self evaluation • Folders/portfolios • Rubrics
  31. 31. Joining Groups to Observe • When I sit down in your group, continue what you are doing. You don’t need to look at me or acknowledge my arrival. • I may just observe the group and move on. If I have something to say, I will say it at the appropriate moment. • Please don’t ask me to give you answers or settle debates. • As I leave, I may or may not give you a suggestion or idea to pursue.
  32. 32. Self Assessment Ideas Performance Assessment – Have students generate the criteria, such as: • Do the reading • Listen to other people • Have good ideas • Ask people questions • Stick to the book
  33. 33. Your Turn: Implementing Literature Circles Do’s • Be prepared! • Practice each role all together (with short stories) • Enlist/expect students to help “make it work” • Provide scaffolding (e.g., question stems) • Model discussion etiquette • Make it fun! Don’ts • Underestimate students • Take over the discussion • Be afraid to keep trying • Give up • Interfere, provide answers
  34. 34. References

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