Brandi J. Clark

Writer and Educator

Help! I Have to Teach Language Arts: A Language Arts Survival Mini-Course Part 5

 

Welcome back!

I have much more to share.

If you are new, here are the other lessons 1, 2, 3, and 4.

Today’s Lesson: Know Your Resources!

The “Two Sisters” are the authors of the Daily Five and the Café.

These resources have gained in popularity BUT how does the Cafe Book stack up with our program of studies?

The last authorized core resource for English Language Arts was Collections.

Though there have being amazing other resources coming from publishers, the truth is, they are unauthorized.

Which means when using other resources, you have to make educated decisions based on the specific outcomes in the English Language Arts Program of Studies.

Let me show you!

Today we will explore the Café book by Gail Boushey and Joan Moser

The Café book presents quick mini-lessons that support Comprehension, Accuracy, Fluency and Expand vocabulary.

The mini-lessons are organized by a one page menu for quick reference.

menu

The Café Menu is divided into four columns: Comprehension, Accuracy, Fluency and Expand Vocabulary.

Beneath the title in each column is a list of GENERAL reading behaviors.

So…although the menu is a helpful tool and structure….

AS a teacher, you need to go in and map out your grade level SPECIFIC outcomes across the menu.

I did this from Kindergarten to Grade Six.

Yes, I am a nerd.

I went into all the ELA program of studies and matched up all the Cafe Menu reading behaviors with their grade level specific outcomes.

I discovered some reading behaviors ranged from not referred to in a specific grade level to heavily emphasized in some grade levels.

Check this out!

On the Café Menu under comprehension there is this specific reading behavior:

Recognize literacy elements (genre, plot, character, setting, problem/resolution, theme)

menu with arrow

Check this out!

KINDERGARTEN

Recognize literacy elements (genre, plot, character, setting, problem/resolution, theme)

talk about and represent the actions of characters portrayed in oral, print and other media texts (2.2)

GRADE 1

Recognize literacy elements (genre, plot, character, setting, problem/resolution, theme)

tell what characters do or what happens to them in a variety of oral, print and other media texts (2.3.4)

GRADE 2

Recognize literacy elements (genre, plot, character, setting, problem/resolution, theme)

apply a variety of strategies, such as asking questions, making predictions, recognizing relationships among story elements and drawing conclusions (2.1)

Identify main characters, places and events in a variety of oral, print and other media texts (2.3)

GRADE 3

Recognize literacy elements (genre, plot, character, setting, problem/resolution, theme)

connect portrayals of characters or situations in oral, print and other media texts to personal and classroom experiences (2.2)

express preferences for one character over another (2.2)

include events, setting and characters when summarizing or retelling oral, print or other media texts (2.3)

describe the main characters in terms of who they are, their actions in the story and their relations with other characters (2.3)

add sufficient detail to oral, print and other media texts to tell about setting and character, and to sustain plot (2.4)

GRADE 4

Recognize literacy elements (genre, plot, character, setting, problem/resolution, theme)

connect the thoughts and actions of characters portrayed in oral, print and other media texts to personal and classroom experiences (2.2)

identify and explain connections among events, setting and main characters in oral, print and other media texts (2.3)

describe similarities and differences between personal experiences and the experiences of people or characters from various cultures portrayed in oral, print and other media texts (5.1)*

GRADE 5

Recognize literacy elements (genre, plot, character, setting, problem/resolution, theme)

describe and discuss new places, times, characters and events encountered in oral, print and other media texts (2.2)

compare characters and situations portrayed in oral, print and other media texts to those encountered in the classroom and community (2.2)*

describe characters’ qualities based on what they say and do and how they are described in oral, print and other media texts (2.2)

describe and discuss the influence of setting on the characters and events (2.2)

identify the main problem or conflict in oral, print and other media texts, and explain how it is resolved (2.3)

identify and discuss the main character’s point of view and motivation (2.3)

identify and discuss how qualities, such as courage, ambition and loyalty, are portrayed in oral, print and other media texts from diverse cultures and communities (5.1)

GRADE 6

Recognize literacy elements (genre, plot, character, setting, problem/resolution, theme)

make connections between own life and characters and ideas in oral, print and other media texts (2.2)

discuss common topics or themes in a variety of oral, print and other media texts (2.2)

make judgements and inferences related to events, characters, setting and main ideas of oral, print and other media texts (2.2)

discuss how detail is used to enhance character, setting, action and mood in oral, print and other media texts (2.2)

discuss the connections among plot, setting and characters in oral, print and other media texts  (2.3)

identify first and third person narration, and discuss preferences with reference to familiar texts (2.3)

explore techniques, such as visual imagery, sound, flashback and voice inflection, in oral, print and other media texts (2.3)

 

It is interesting …right?!

Did you notice how much more there is to explore in grade 6?

Now can you imagine just teaching the literary elements in grade 6 but not to the depth needed?

You need to know how the specific outcomes match up to the resources you use.

This marks the end of today’s lesson.

I know.

You want me to keep going.

But I want you to digest today’s learning.

Know your Resources!

Think about the resources you have access to and how they might match up to the specific learning outcomes.

Look at your grade level: What reading behaviors are emphasized in your grade level?

Create a Cafe Menu that is specific to your grade.

Trust me…everything else makes sense if you know your resources and how they connect to the program of studies.

Until Next Time,

Coach Brandi!

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