Student Practicum Lesson Plan and Reflection

Lesson #3
Your Name: Jamie Embree
Student Grade: 4th
Date: November 5, 2012
Student Name: Jacob
Lesson Plan #3
Procedure: What will you do?
Include steps.
Rationale: Why are you teaching
this? How are you addressing the
child’s needs?
What text reading backs this up?
Connection: 110.15 English
Language Arts and Reading,
Grade 4
This lesson will focus on helping Jacob
determine what is important in
nonfiction text. To introduce this idea,
I will ask the question, “Jacob, do you
think it is possible to remember
everything you read?” Jacob and I will
briefly discuss one of the biggest
challenges of reading, which is trying
to remember everything you have read.
To illustrate this concept, I will show a
large poster with pictures of camping
related items. I will ask Jacob if he can
guess the general idea. Next, I will tell
Jacob to pretend that we are going on a
camping trip and that we must select
the five most important items to take
with us. During our activity, I will
highlight that even though items might
oftentimes be really interesting and/or
helpful, they might not be the most
After the introductory activity, I will
show Jacob the book, The
Unhuggables. To build interest in the
text, Jacob and I will discuss the book’s
title and cover illustration and make
some predictions about what the book
Motivation for learning increases
when teaching activities are relevant
to students’ lives. Students often
have difficulty in determining
importance in non-fiction text.
27 Listening and
(A) listen attentively to
speakers, ask relevant
questions, and make pertinent
Published by
The National
FIT Chart
Marking Text
Graves, M. F., Jaun, C., Graves, B.,
& Dewitz, P. (2011). Teaching
reading in the 21st century:
Motivating all learners (5th ed.).
Boston: Pearson.
Harvey, S. (1998). Nonfiction
matters: reading, writing, and
research in grades 3-8. York, ME:
Stenhouse Publishers.
It is impossible for students to
remember everything they read.
Students must be given formal
instruction on determining
importance in non-fiction text.
Explanation will be given to Jacob
28 Listening and
express an opinion supported
by accurate information,
employing eye contact,
speaking rate, volume,
enunciation, and the
conventions of language to
communicate ideas
11 Reading/Comprehension
of Informational
Text/Expository Text:
Students analyze, make
inferences, and draw
conclusions about expository
Interactive ReadAloud and
Writing Activity
FIT Chart
might entail. I will explain to Jacob that
this particular book covers a great deal
of information which would make it
impossible to remember everything in
the book. I will then share with Jacob
that good readers make decisions while
reading about what is most important
and worth remembering. I will explain
to Jacob that certain codes, such as
drawing a simple asterisk, highlighting,
or underlining key ideas, can help us
recall important information. Using the
text, The Unhuggables, I will begin
reading the first couple of pages aloud.
While reading, I will briefly pause and
comment on ideas that I think are
important and share any questions or
responses I have with Jacob. During
this time, I will quickly mark important
information in the text. I will also draw
special attention to common features
found in nonfiction texts, features that
often help us distinguish important
Next, I will turn to page 45 of the book
to a passage titled, “Cockroaches.”
Jacob and I will take a minute to
preview and discuss the pictures and
other text features. Before beginning to
read, I will briefly introduce Jacob to a
three column chart with sections
labeled, “Most Important Facts,
Interesting Details, and My Thinking”
(FIT). I will tell Jacob that we will use
this chart to record some key ideas that
we want to be sure to remember.
Together, we will then take turns
reading aloud to each other. After each
paragraph, Jacob and I will stop to
determine what information was most
so he will understand that there are
specific strategies and common text
features that can help us determine
what is important and, therefore,
worth remembering.
Graves, M. F., Jaun, C., Graves, B.,
& Dewitz, P. (2011). Teaching
reading in the 21st century:
Motivating all learners (5th ed.).
Boston: Pearson.
Harvey, S. (1998). Nonfiction
matters: reading, writing, and
research in grades 3-8. York, ME:
Stenhouse Publishers.
The purpose of this activity is to
help Jacob understand and
remember what he reads. Teaching
comprehension strategies through
graphic organizers, such as a FIT
chart, will support Jacob’s reading
development as he gains proficiency
in determining importance and
responding to text both verbally and
through writing.
Furthermore, by using the book as a
reference, Jacob will also benefit
from practice in using common nonfiction text features, such as
introductions, headings, quotes,
illustrations, and captions to support
text and provide evidence
from text to support their
(A) summarize the main idea
and supporting details in text
(D) use multiple text features
27 Listening and
(A) listen attentively to
speakers, ask relevant
questions, and make pertinent
1 Reading/Fluency
Students read grade-level text
with fluency and
11 Reading/Comprehension
of Informational
Text/Expository Text:
Students analyze, make
inferences and draw
conclusions about expository
text and provide evidence
from text to support their
(A) summarize the main idea
and supporting details in text
FIT Chart
important and mark the text
appropriately. After we have finished
reading a small section, I will begin to
model how to use the FIT chart by
jotting down some of our most
important facts, interesting details, and
responses about the reading in the
appropriate columns.
Closure Activity:
After modeling the FIT strategy, Jacob
will be instructed to read about another
animal from the book, The
Unhuggables. As Jacob reads, I will
ask that he continues to mark the text
for the most important information and
add a couple of important facts,
interesting details, and responses to use
in charting as we did earlier. Jacob will
have the opportunity to select an animal
about which he would like to learn
more. As needed, Jacob and I will
discuss key ideas in the passage.
his findings.
(D) use multiple text features
Harvey, S. & Goudvis, A. (2000).
Strategies that work: Teaching
comprehension to enhance
understanding. Portland, ME:
29 Listening and
participate in teacher- and
student-led discussions by
posing and answering
questions with appropriate
detail and by providing
suggestions that build upon
the ideas of others.
Graves, M. F., Jaun, C., Graves, B.,
& Dewitz, P. (2011). Teaching
reading in the 21st century:
Motivating all learners (5th ed.).
Boston: Pearson.
Giving Jacob the choice of which
animal he would enjoy learning
more about will increase his interest
and motivation. Instructing Jacob to
read independently while continuing
to mark the text for the most
important facts will provide
evidence as to whether or not Jacob
can successfully determine
importance in text. Having Jacob
add to the FIT chart will also prove
if Jacob is capable of differentiating
important facts from less important
Graves, M. F., Jaun, C., Graves, B.,
& Dewitz, P. (2011). Teaching
reading in the 21st century:
Motivating all learners (5th ed.).
Boston: Pearson.
9 Reading/Comprehension
of Text/Independent
Students read independently
for sustained periods of time
and produce evidence of their
FIT Chart
Your Name: Jamie Embree
Student Name: Jacob
Lesson and Personal Reflection for Lesson Plan # 2
Lesson Reflection: CHILD NOTES---Focus is on the child. How
did my student respond to the opportunities to learn that I
Introduction Activity
Jacob thoroughly enjoyed the camping introductory activity. Not only
could Jacob guess the general idea of the poster with ease, he
immediately began selecting the five items that he believed were most
important to take with us on our pretend camping trip. Much to my
surprise, many of the items that I thought were most important for our
camping trip were not even included on Jacob’s list. Each time I
questioned an item’s importance, Jacob promptly defended his
selections with great confidence. For example, I pointed out to Jacob
that we had not included water on our list and how I believed that water
was essential to our survival. He very quickly enlightened me that
bringing water was not a necessity. He went on to explain that boiling
water would get rid of harmful bacteria and make the water we gathered
from the nearby lake safe to drink, thus making the camping stove far
more important. Another time, I asked Jacob why he didn’t think it was
important to include a compass. Again, he supported his choice by
commenting that this particular item was not the most important
because we could simply look at the sun’s location and tell which
direction we were headed. These are just a couple of the many
instances in which Jacob could easily distinguish what he believed to be
the most important items from the interesting or less important items.
Think-Aloud/Marking Text
To teach Jacob more about the strategy, determining importance, I used
the book, The Unhuggables. Before we started reading, I asked Jacob if
he thought it was possible to remember everything we read in the book,
to which he quickly responded that would be impossible and agreed it
would be helpful to determine what information was most important
Personal Reflection: Focus on YOU! As a result of teaching these
activities, what did I learn about teaching in general and about
myself as a teacher? How did your plan address your student’s
individual diverse needs?
From earlier conversations, I learned Jacob enjoyed camping with his
family. To introduce the strategy of determining importance, I decided
to include an activity that focused on camping. I thought if instruction
was meaningful for Jacob, it would help increase his motivation for
learning; however, even I underestimated how well Jacob would
respond. Watching Jacob as he spoke tirelessly about our camping
essentials made me realize just how important it is for teachers to
encourage classroom discussions that allow students time to be the
center of attention. Oftentimes, in the classroom the teacher does most
of the talking. Even during whole-group and/or small group discussion
time, conversations are generally dominated by a few select students.
Though possibly unintentional, struggling learners are typically
overlooked, leaving those children to believe their thoughts are of little
value. All kids need to be made to feel special, that their contributions
have worth. Simply by tailoring instruction to compliment Jacob’s
interests gave him the opportunity shine as he shared with me his
experiences and wowed me with his camping expertise.
During the think-aloud activity Jacob and I carefully looked over the
book and its textual features. Afterwards, I asked Jacob if he ever paid
special attention to text features and/or made any predictions about texts
before he began reading. Jacob expressed that he never looked at text
features because his teachers never told him to do so. Jacob’s comment
and worth remembering. Briefly, we flipped through the book, looked
at the headings and pictures, after which he made some quality
predictions about what the book might entail. Jacob seemed genuinely
excited about the book’s content and, again, had much to share with me
about the animals. After I read the introduction, Jacob agreed that the
authors’ main purpose for writing was to share with readers some
interesting information about some of creatures people have a tendency
to dislike.
Interactive Read Aloud/Modeling FIT Chart
During our reading, I was pleasantly surprised by the amount of
background knowledge Jacob had for the text. There were many times
when Jacob would share his own thoughts and personal connections
with me. When asking Jacob what information he thought was most
important, he was accurate most of the time, although, at times, he was
distracted by interesting facts. Frequently, referring back to the FIT
chart to record information proved to be a valuable resource in helping
us distinguish important from less important or interesting information.
To add further explanation, I shared with Jacob that authors include
interesting details to make their writing clearer and/or more exciting to
the reader. Jacob confirmed his understanding of this by commenting,
“Well, if it was boring, we wouldn’t want to read it!”
Independent Reading/FIT Chart
For the independent reading activity, I asked Jacob to select and read
about any animal from the book about which he believed there was
absolutely nothing fascinating to learn. Taking a few minutes, he
looked over all the different animals, finally selecting the section on
leeches. Due to time constraints, the FIT chart was not completed
entirely, although Jacob and I were able to briefly discuss leeches and
what important information the author shared with us that make them
fascinating creatures. To my delight, Jacob had enjoyed reading the
book so much that he even asked if could borrow it and read more about
some of the other animals. Specifically, he mentioned wanting to read
the section on fleas and ticks to his mother because she hated those
animals and maybe she would learn something interesting facts about
them, too.
encouraged me to reflect on my personal experience using text features
as a young reader. I can remember reading chapters from textbooks,
intentionally skipping over any lengthy introductions, never heeding to
headings, and I certainly never paid that close attention to graphs or
captions; my only purpose was to simply finish the assigned reading.
Now, having a deeper understanding of the reading process, I realize
that teaching students practical strategies, such as text features, is
essential to their ability to successfully comprehend complicated
nonfiction texts.
This activity was embedded with learning opportunities for Jacob, and
me as well. What I failed to recognize beforehand were some of the
unique challenges teaching this concept poses. For readers, like Jacob,
that are already experiencing difficulty in reading, learning this strategy
becomes an even more daunting task. In order to assist my students in
building proficiency and confidence in complex comprehension
strategies like determining importance, I must provide explicit teaching
instruction and plenty of opportunities for guided practice. In the
classroom, I must also remember that time spent teaching strategy
instruction may vary greatly depending on students’ individual needs.
My ultimate goal during this practicum was to provide Jacob with some
reading experiences that were both successful and enjoyable. Jacob has
always identified himself as hating reading because he finds it difficult,
in content and comprehension. When a child struggles repeatedly in an
area, his self-esteem as a successful learner suffers. While only the
child can truly increase his own self-esteem, it the teacher that offers
him the opportunity to do so. The teacher lays true the path by which
the child can experience success in subjects he once thought too
difficult. As teacher, I am the one that makes a student an eager learner
or a reluctant participant held hostage in a day-long struggle to just get
by. Hopefully, Jacob’s perception of himself as a reader is changing
and he will begin see himself as I see him, a skilled and very capable
Most Important Facts
Interesting Details
My Thinking
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