Professional Reading

I sink my head down and admit. I am not an avid reader. I so want to be. But I am not.
I am more of a blog reader. This is still reading. And yes, the blogs I subscribe to are mostly educational. But I can't say I often sit down and read a full book. But there is one book in particular that I refer to often.

Notice and Note by Beers and Probst. I read this in preparation for this school term. The gist of the book is that we need to read more closely. In this strategy, students follow 6 signposts.
The authors describe their strategy as follows:

"Just as rigor does not reside in the barbell but in the act of lifting it, rigor in reading is not an attribute of a text but rather of a reader’s behavior—engaged, observant, responsive, questioning, analytical. The close reading strategies in Notice and Note will help you cultivate those critical reading habits that will make your students more attentive, thoughtful, independent readers."—Kylene Beers and Robert E. Probst 

As much I hate to admit it when I was told this would be a part of my professional development requirements. I like it! Yes, I do!

Students are able to stop and reflect on what they read. In the past, I would not see this. Students would just read to get finished. To help the students do this I made paper street signs with each benchmark or "signpost". They are labeled as follows:

1. Contrasts and Contradictions
2. The Aha Moment
3.  Tough Questions
4. Words of the Wiser
5. Again and Again
6. Memory Moment

Here is my wall!

To my thrill, some students have referred to signposts in which we have had very little discussion. We were actually told during implementation to introduce only one (maybe 2) signposts per year. I am sure not going to inhibit a student who is trying to connect to one which we have not featured!

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