Thursday, December 28, 2017

Shades of Meaning

Challenge add a level of  sophistication to primary students' writing. Growing an understanding of shades of meaning is an essential learning in English Language Arts.  A couple of important questions that teachers ask when devoting any length of time to an activity are: Where's the learning? How are standards driving the learning? This lesson knocks the ball out of the park answering those questions.  From beginning to end the lesson is driven by purpose. 

Below is an awesome lesson that my third grade colleague Heather Hale implemented during the spring. Heather pulled ideas from Pinterest and TPT to come up with her own unique spin to teach different hues of meaning for synonyms. You'll find a T.E.A.M. modeled lesson plan that can be accessed for free by clicking on the link in this blog.

Hook: Colorful Challenge!  The challenge is a play on students' prior learning. Students have been developing dictionary & thesaurus skills, as well as an understanding of synonyms.  Using recently created sentences and the thesaurus, students were challenged to make their writing more colorful.

Setting it up! Students worked together with the teacher to model examples and set expectations for the activity with anchor charts. Students participate in Think, Pair, and Share, as the teacher guides and records to create charts.

Students are then turned loose with the thesaurus. Students are encouraged to identify synonyms independently. Students are then encouraged to arrange their words according degrees of certainty and participate in discussions with peers for affirmation or challenges to their opinions. 

Students displayed their lists by creating a colorful classroom centerpiece and revised sentences as journal entries.