Inferring The Heartbeat of Comprehension, K-6 Pat Johnson and Katie Keier IRA Conference Orlando May, 2011 [email_address] [email_address] Catching Readers Before They Fall: Supporting Readers Who Struggle, Johnson & Keier One Child at a Time: Making the Most of Your Time with Struggling Readers, K-6, Pat Johnson www.stenhouse.com
Adapted from Schulman, Guided Reading in Grades 3-6 Pinnell & Fountas , Guiding Readers & Writers, 3-6 Johnson , One Child at a Time
Explicit Modeling and Gradual Release of Responsibility 1 2 3 4 I do I do You do You do You watch You help I help I watch Wilhelm, Baker, Dube Strategic Reading
Dorn & Soffos Shaping Literate Minds Modeling Coaching Scaffolding Fading Pat Johnson One Child at a Time Modeling Scaffolding Prompting Backing Off Reinforcing Regie Routman Reading Essentials Demonstration Shared Demonstration Guided Practice Independent Practice Fountas & Pinnell Guiding Readers & Writers, 3-6 Show Support Prompt Reinforce Observe
Pat: Open with introductions.KATIE is a litercy specilalist.
Pat do this part quickly : We are going to talk about inferring in this session, but first…we want to be sure we are on the same wavelength for these two concepts, reading process and the gradual release model ---so we’ll go over those concepts quickly. I will talk a bit about RP and then Katie do the second assumption, about gradual release.
Pat elaborates on these ideas: We can’t divide them by grade level. Theirs is a danger to teaching them one at a time without any thought to the integration that needs to happen. Pat – shorten this explanation. Proficient readers have this process going on…. Struggling readers are having trouble constructing it. Teachers of SR need to understand reading process and learn to teach in support of the child building his system. Overlap, connect, etc. like a net.
Katie shorten this explanation :So if we want to support students as they build this RP system, then how do we teach? Here is the way Jeff Wilhelm talks about exp mod and gradual release….. I do/ you watch….etc. If you are going to teach kids how to predict what a word might be…. Or how to ask yourself questions before and while reading bc it will help you stay engaged with text…. This is best teaching practice. You have to model, demo, then do together, then give time for practice, then move to ind. But constantly be watching which kids need you to return to different points to repeat the modeling or the shared demos with them.
Katie slide. What good teaching looks like. Lots of diff books all say the same thing. It’s not really linear. You may have some kids who can take off right after your modeling; other kids will need more support and need to come together in small groups for extra shared demonstrations or more than the average GR lessons. When working with one child you need to be responsive to that child’s needs. If you prompt the child (point to F & P list) and he doesn’t know what you mean then you need to back up and show and support. It’s responsive teaching to weave up and down these ---- responding to what the child does or doesn’t do. There’s no magic formula that says that ONE modeling, Two SD, and Three GR practice sessions will guarantee that every child in the class will take on that strategy. Then say “take just a minute and talk to your partner about your understanding of those two concepts – Reading process and Gradual release model.
Katie.: Questions for this sessions. Read them. We probably all agree that inferring is important for proficient readers to do, so how do we teach it?
Pat: And just like with any other strategy you have to feel/believe that it is something that real readers actually do. Ex. Vis/Ques….Tell people to read it and then talk about what it’s about with a partner. Then tell them” did you notice how you naturally talked about ___- and _____. You did not say that this was about a lady climbing stairs that were broken and had tacks in them. You automatically went deeper/ you automatically inferred. It’s what readers DO.”
Pat: So how would you define inferring? Here are a few…
Switch this one to Katie: It’s going a little bit deeper than the literal level of text. It’s reading between the lines, adding your own thoughts as you make meaning of the text. Lots of teachers in our school use this graphic to get students to start to grasp what inferring is.
Katie: We’re going to try another activity to broaden our thinking about inferring --- to think about all it entails. Think about when you read… or when your students are reading their books. What sort of things might not be explicit in the text with words from the author, but the reader may have to imply them? We’ll take some answers from the audience and then show the next slide. Remind them that they won’t have these answer (next slide) on the handout.
Katie: They will not have this on their copy of the handout (bc it is the answers to the activity.) Things you have to “figure out” as you read. We won’t go thru this list entirely with examples bc we’ll do that throughout. But Katie and I can each mention one or two. Then says “We will be elaborating on all of these and more as we go thru this session.”
Katie: They will not have this on their copy of the handout (bc it is the answers to the activity.) Things you have to “figure out” as you read. Both Katie and Pat: Keep this short, we each do only 1 -2. We won’t go thru this list entirely with examples bc we’ll do that throughout. But Katie and I can each mention one or two. Then say “We will be elaborating on all of these and more as we go thru this session.”
Katie Have you ever had one of those readers who you say, “he’s so literal” . He gets what ‘s going on in the story but only at the most basic level. He can’t see any deeper. Well, those are the kids who need us to support them as they learn to infer. They need to infer at the word level (figuring out difficult vocab); the text level (predictions, character’s feelings, setting, problem, etc), and beyond text level (theme, message of text, author’s perspective.)
Katie . This is so important to keep in mind. Many teachers think that “inferring” is something older readers do, but even little kinders can Infer. Kids already know how to infer. My first graders would infer things every day during read aloud time. Two ex on next two slides too.
Katie: I could read this sentence to kinder or first graders and then ask “what season is it?” And they would all know.
Katie: Or I could read this sentence (read it) and ask “how is this mom feeling” and most primary kids could tell me the answer. That’s all inferring and kids already know how to do it, so we just need to build on it with the texts they are reading.
Pat: So how do you teach students to infer????Before we go any further on the teaching of inferring. Let’s go back to this pix of Reading Process again. Integration of all. The overlapping. When you infer and put the author’s words with some of your background knowledge, you can’t help but make a connection or visualize. Sometimes you are linking and predicting and so on. The big point is “reading is more than just the surface level.” If you’ve looked at books like STW, Reading with M, Mosaic, etc. many teachers start thinking about teaching the strategies one at a time. Let’s talk a little about that.
Pat: There’s been a bit of debate lately over this idea. If the end goal is integration, then should we be teaching the strategies one at a time????
Pat:Keep meaning always at the forefront.I’m going to read this passage and I want to see if visualizing will help me…be sure you pick a piece where V actually DOES help you comprehend. Go over the difference of these two (using visualizing or questioning), then move to infer with the next slide.
Pat. I moved this quote from the end. I think it fits well here. And that’s what we have to teach SR to do ---- think as they read.
Pat: I start with trying to understand this poem…. Ask the kids later “what was I doing?”
Katie: Pat and I do modeled lessons like she just showed you, but then we have to release resp. a bit more and have the kids do it with partner. But it’s a shared demonstration so I talk them thru it. Who is the I? Remind the audience that on the list we brainstormed that one way of inferring is to know about the character or the narrator. An “I” in a story is a first person narrator. Tell about the Riddle book. Don’t use pix, but retype the words on the overhead. Just talk about the Fairy Tale one but don’t do one. I hid the next slide. (We might also use this book….bc you have to figure out who the narrator is… blah…) Be sure to say, we got both ideas for these two books (Riddles and Fairy tale from: Sibberson and Syzmusiak rec. this book to us in their book “Still Learning to Read” –
Katie: Explain about this book (also suggested by Sibberson and Syz. ) Stress the importance of rearranging predictions/inferences based on new evidence arising. When I did this with a 4 th gr class, they predicted the I was a lion, tiger, bear, monster, and wolverine. When I read further they narrowed their prediction down to either papa bear or baby bear from the Goldilocks story, and when I read the last part they figured out it was papa bear.. Bring the book or one page and read aloud the start of one to them. The Rumplestilskin one works well.
Pat: Let’s take ideas from that list now and I’ll give you some examples of books to use or ways we worked on this in the classroom. Bring Daisy charts. These are just suggestions. Use the books that you are already reading. (Also there is a context clues lesson thoroughly described in ONE CHILD)For each one of these sections, Katie and I can take turns giving quick book talk or how the book relates to the topic.
Katie: Talk about My Lucky Day --- and how after the pig does one or two things, the kids catch on and predict how he is going to trick the fox next. But this book even leaves room at the very end for a prediction about what the pig is going to do the next day. Show them what you mean. Don’t go thru it as long as RR conference. Shorten. (I also deleted the part where they turn and talk about one they know.)
Pat:: It’s not that the kids have to predict a surprise ending, but they have to understand it. Sometimes the surprise is subtle, like in My Lucky Day. Paper Bag Princess.
Katie: : In Chester’s Way, Chester and Wilson are obviously neat, organized, type A personalities. Lilly comes along and is wild and crazy, daring and spontaneous. Even young kids can figure out these characters personality by what they say and do. Kate DiCamillo is great at character development – such rich characters in Winn Dixie, Despereaux, or Tiger Rising We highly rec the C. Rylant Every Lv thing – collection of short stories. Lots to infer, not just about characters. Have them do the partner question at the bottom: Your example can be: How many of you read “Help” – the character Skeeter is: brave, intelligent, compassionate, and yet sometimes a bit naïve. Turn to partner and tell about a character’s personality you read in a book lately.
Pat: (to save on time, I’ll do two slides in a row here and then Katie does two in a row.) books are laugh-out-loud funny to kids but in others the humor is more subtle. Some kids laugh along with others, but do they really get it??? Two bad ants. Diary of worm – “It’s the first day of fishing season – we all dug deeper.” Read from Iguana story. I took off the turn and talk after this one.
Pat: Tell about Mary’s one pagers in the back. About school uniforms and fast food, etc. Just like two books on Thomas Jefferson ---- one writes as if he did no wrong and another writes about the slaves he owned, etc. critical lit. today with the internet access.
Katie – Sometimes within the story the character has an opinion about an issue or a person in the story. Show and talk about Voices in Park.
Katiet: Talk about ELL kids too and what a problem these can be. They maybe can read the words, but they don’t know what the phrase means or they have trouble figuring out a metaphor. Turtle reference is an extended metaphor all the way thru the book. Read a few lines from Seed is Sleepy – what a perfect opportunity to work with kids on inferring before you read the page. How can a seed by adventurous? Sleepy? Generous? Big Orange Splot has “bats in your belfry; bees in your bonnet; and many more ways to say the main character is off his rocker.
Pat: You remember doing this in HS English class. It’s often a large part of what makes a novel work. The protagonist of the story goes thru a change. There are so many “coming of age” stories in 3-6 literature. Characters change – start with Quiltmakers
Pat: Tell about Wringer first.Lots of pix books have theme – honesty, standing up for what you believe in, friendship, peer pressure, love who you are, etc. When you do two together that have a similar theme it helps kids catch on even more. Standing up for a friend, loyalty = Teammates (J. Robinson and Pee Wee Rease) and Freedom Summer. Honesty and owning up for the other two. Depending on time – we may or may not do the turn and talk here.
Pat:: if you are going to have kids compare books with similar themes, then be sure you read two in the same week that have a similar theme. I hid the next slide on Crow boy; leaving it out.
Pat: decide whether to include talking about doing this with your teachers, but not doing in this session.
Katie: But do we have to constantly be saying, “this is inferring.” or What strategy did you use? No, just keep negotiating the meaning of text with kids; keep meaning as the focus. We hope we have helped to broaden your understanding of all that inferring encompasses. Look for opportunities in read aloud, shared reading, GR, and individualized conferences. It’s everywhere.
The kids who are Struggling readers don’t get what the other kids are doing in their heads as they read. They don’t know that the other kids is SM… or VIS… of summarizing as he goes along… or carefully following the action of the story --- where are the characters, how are they feeling, etc. Our job is to help them learn to THINK like proficient readers do.
Katie: Just read the quotes. Comment on it if you’d like.
Pat: We can close with this list. Or shorten this list or take it out, let them do the find one thing to walk away with. Any age can do it; watch your read aloud = quality ones They can close by saying one thing to a partner that you are going to walk away with from this session.
Katie – either get them to do this with a partner… or we’ll have several people share out, depending on timing.
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