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Sport Climbing: Three Sources + Cheat Sheet

What kind of sport climbing are you interested in? Speed climbing? Lead climbing? Or bouldering? There are some great sources on this hot topic–I chose a video and two articles that compliment each other (i.e., they have similar main ideas but each contributes interesting supporting details). And of course, there’s a cheat sheet, too. You …Read more

Driverless Cars: Three Sources + Cheat Notes

This text set includes two articles and a video on this HOT TOPIC! See further below for cheat notes on similar details in the sources. Probably most appropriate for 4th-7th grades. Source 1 VIDEO “Why don’t we have self-driving cars yet?” by Business Insider This is about five minutes. The details I suggest using begin …Read more

Cool Amphibians: Easy Sources for Compare/Contrast

With COVID-19 and school closures, we need easy access to well-structured, on-line informational sources, huh? This blog is the first in a series that provides two sources & quick notes. My first recommendation is asking students (grades 2-5) to compare two animals on the San Diego Zoo Kids site. What students need to notice: The …Read more

Three Books – Same Facts But…

Three books about Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Three different authors. Each shape the facts to reveal distinct insight. I Dissent: Ruth Bader Ginsburg Makes Her Mark (Levy, 2016) Ruth Bader Ginsburg: The Case of R. B. G. vs. Inequality (Winter, 2017) No Truth Without Ruth: The Life of Ruth Bader Ginsburg (Krull, 2018) Here are two examples of how …Read more

3 Steps – Launching Students into Reading Multiple Sources

Kids FALL IN LOVE with reading multiple sources on a topic–once we introduce them to the idea. So how do we get them hooked? In a way that’s manageable for us? Could it be as simple as these three steps and a set of 2-3 books on the same topic? (Attached as a word doc …Read more

Critical thinking across multiple texts – Part I

In a 7th grade social studies class I visited a few weeks ago, the students used an evolving definition of “honorable” as a lens for reading multiple texts on warriors – ancient and modern. In the image below, the blue text was our original definition. As the students engaged in discussions about what it means …Read more

Writing with Mentor Texts – App Reviews in Grades 6-8

Is anybody else sick of the five-paragraph essay? The book Writing with Mentors (Marchetti & O’Dell, 2015) was so refreshing to read as I ponder how to keep students excited about reading and writing analytically. The authors provide insight into how we can engage students in writing for authentic purposes in a variety of non-five-paragraph …Read more

Reading ACROSS Texts- Contemplating the “Value of”

Recently I taught a lesson with sixth grade students reading two texts on the topic of Hurricane Katrina. While the authors of both texts had the same purpose–recounting events that occurred when the storm hit land, the authors used different text structures to convey the content. The first text was primarily a timeline of what …Read more

8th Grade Text Set & Prompt for Written Response, Part 1

Kudos to my ELA colleagues in a middle school who developed this appropriately rigorous text set and prompt for their 8th grade students studying the Holocaust. Together with the 6th and 7th grade teams, we analyzed several students’ written responses to this prompt. More on that in the next post 🙂 TEXTS: Source A (entire …Read more