I'm a little nervous about this post. I'm hoping that I didn't do anything illegal. It's possible the police will show up to my blog. But I'm still going to share what I did!! I'll just hope for the best! ;O)
Okay, so we have been working on figurative language for the last, say, three weeks. We honestly didn't mean to spend this much time on it, but we realized they didn't learn it in third grade so we needed more detailed instruction. The main reason we started with this was because we want students to be able to recognize it in their reading all year AND to use it in their writing.
So, because we were extending our original plans, we were looking through some books that had great figurative language. My colleague showed me this book and I knew I had to use it!
So, when I read the book, I was ooooooing and ahhhhhhing over the figurative language. I was excited it had so much and would be a perfect mentor text for our unit! I was reading from a teacher/adult perspective.
Then, I read it from a student perspective. I knew that it was going to be pretty deep and my students may not have a clue what it was about just from me reading it. I also know that I need to really teach in small groups as much as possible because of my class make up this year.
I mean, look at the very first page!!
So, I decided to make some copies of some of the pages (is that illegal??) and then we could notate on the pages the elements of figurative language that we found, plus do a little analyzing of poetry.
I did read the entire book to the class. I could tell they were pretty lost. When I finished, I asked, "What was this poem about?"
They said twilight. And maybe dusk and dawn?
And that was it. Which was what I expected.
So I explained that poetry really is so fun to read because it really makes you have to read deeply to understand it. That means that you have to reread it a few times to be sure you understand what the author is trying to say.
So, this is where we split into small groups. I actually split them into their reading groups so that I could base the small group lessons around what they needed.
I made copies of only a few of the pages of the book. Each student had their own copy. We went stanza by stanza, finding examples of figurative language and analyzing what Fletcher was saying about twilight.
Here are some photos of what we did together.
The amount of deep thinking that went into this on the part of the students was intense!! Some of them were totally out of their comfort zone but by the end of the week, they had caught on! We worked on this each day for four days this past week in small group.
It was really amazing to see all of that thinking going on. And, they are pros at picking out figurative language!! On top of that, they LOVED it!
Next week, while I'm starting with our guided reading books, I'm going to have the students work in pairs to do the same exact thing, but with a different book, Hello, Harvest Moon also by Ralph Fletcher.
I will let you know how it goes!
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Next week's linky- Math