Margin Notes

Try This Tomorrow: Inviting Students to Share Thinking About Books


One of the challenges we face in the literacy classroom is that the thinking about and understanding of text happens in our students’ heads, so we need to develop ways for students to make their thinking visible to us and their classmates (and often themselves because sharing our thinking about a text often leads to new and deeper thinking). Here are a few samples that students can use to share reactions to their independent reading that doesn’t require more time and effort than the reading itself:

-use By Heart and New Sentences as models for discussing a sentence or passage that resonated with you.

-write a “bite-sized” review similar to the ones these authors have written about their favorite short stories .

-instead of writing about The 25 Songs That Matter Right Now, list the books that mattered during the semester or year. Alternatively, identify the books that have mattered to you as a reader and explain how they have impacted your reading identity.

-look at these student responses to the question “What one song best encapsulates this era?” and select the song (or poem or image) that best encapsulates your book.

-prescribe a poem for a character in your book based on the models from Poetry Rx.

-describe your book based on its “significant digits” .

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