Category: Complex Texts


Chunking Texts for Better Understanding

While teachers sometimes chunk texts to increase accessibility and understanding, having students do the chunking work themselves brings far greater results. Take a look at the latest installment in our Tips and Tricks for Inquiry-Based Teaching video blog.

 

 

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The Spiral Curriculum: Letting Go of Mastery

Although we debate about modes and methods, educators mostly acquiesce to the need to assess student proficiency. The problems start when, in the search for appropriate measures, we toss around words like “mastery.” As ELA teachers, we of all people should be aware of the importance of word choice. “Mastery” stresses us out because in teaching literature, what is it that we are asking students to “master” exactly? How does one master a text? We’ve been interpreting, reinterpreting, and debating […]

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Diving In: Why We Don’t “Pre-Teach” Our Texts

The recent increase in text complexity recommendations would seem to require an increase in pre-teaching and front loading of background information to help students tackle the increased difficulty.  Find out why inquiry and close reading affirm the opposite.

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English Learners and Dependent Readers: An Unexpected Advantage (Part 2)

We are always concerned for our struggling learners. Of course we are. So when a teacher first encounters the crazy-complex texts in an Inquiry By Design unit, that teacher may be a little skeptical, or hesitant, or even terrified.

Well, take a deep breath because there are several research-based reasons why those might be the very students to excel with challenging texts and an inquiry based pedagogy. (If you missed reasons 1-3, go here.)

I went through school a long time ago, […]

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Authentic Literacy and Crow Pose

 

Several years ago I started practicing yoga. I’m not as dedicated as I’d like to be and therefore it has taken me three years to achieve crow pose, and I can still only hold it for less than ten seconds. I spent a long, long time attempting crow while it seemed like nothing was changing—no progress. But there must have been some microshifts and tiny strengthenings, because one day—boom! I hit it and held it.

There are things you do to […]

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