This week began with a cyberattack on my district computer systems that made digital instruction all but impossible this week. Kids are locked out of everything. Resetting passwords was not easy. Without missing a beat, my students utilized our class sets of books. My 11th-grade USH students began reading Hellhound on His Trail and my 10th-grade World History students had a choice between I Am Malala or The Kite Runner.
One of my favorite ways to get students reading for a purpose is a corroboration drill. I give students a finite amount of time to corroborate facts from their reading with the textbook. I teach them a simple format to emulate, essentially Source 1 says… Source 2 says … When these two facts are taken together they suggest…
This is a very difficult cognitive task that students struggle to complete. Last year, my tenth-grade students could do four corroborations per class period on average with a low of four and a high of twenty-seven over two class periods.
When I follow up and build on this lesson, I will need to provide better examples so that students learn to improve this skill with additional reps. Sentence starters will go a long way toward improving this type of student writing.
Retell in Rhyme
In World History, students were challenged to choose 10 unfamiliar words from off the whiteboard and write rhyming couplets that summarized their understanding of what they read in I Am Malala.
Since this was the first time students used this EduProtocol, I paired them up to make this a collaborative task. I was very pleased with the results, which contained important historical details and indicated a strong understanding of the material.
My goal was for students to complete 10 rhyming couplets in 30 minutes. Not everyone hit the goal. The 11th-grade USH students did a better job, but I think this was because they had used this EduProtocol last year and were more familiar with it. I am looking forward to coaching up my 10th graders and giving them more reps with Retell in Rhyme.