File Folder Schema by malj


									Great web resource for all 6 strategies-with videos to
use with your class: called Into the book:

Schema strategy lessons:
Online making connections schema lesson:

File Folder Schema

Concepts – An individual’s schema for a topic changes as he reads. Some
ideas are confirmed and some are proven false. New knowledge is
discovered as one reads and this knowledge is added to the reader’s schema.

A. Model whole class

1. Explain to the students that our brain is like a file cabinet. We have lots
of information about different topics filed away in our brains. Show them
the teacher’s file cabinet and files as a comparison. The information in your
brain files is your schema or background knowledge about a topic.
Everyone’s schema for a topic is different, depending on your experiences
and what you have read about a topic. Give some examples. Explain that as
we read our schema changes. Some of our ideas are confirmed, and some
are proven wrong. The ideas that we had that we find out are not true need
to be thrown out. We add new schema to our mental files when we read new
information about a topic.

2. Attach a file folder to chart paper. Pose a question to the students and
write this question on a strip of paper, attaching it to the file folder with
paper clips. Sample question that Debbie Miller used which worked into my
lesson because of the time of year – ―Why do leaves change color?‖ Ask
the children for their schema on this topic. Record each response on a large
note card and put it inside the file folder. Accept all responses.

3. Read a nonfiction book or parts of a nonfiction book that answers the
question. After reading, reexamine the schema note cards and discuss which
ones need to be thrown out. Take those cards out of the file and put an X
through them. Discuss which schema were confirmed in the reading and put
that back in the file. Put new facts that were learned on new cards, and put
them into the file. If there was new information read that was connected to
information put on a card before doing the reading, the new information can
be added to an existing card to clarify or further explain an idea.

4. Follow up – Discuss how our schema changed when we read the book.
Talk about how good readers are constantly changing their schema as they

B. Guided Reading Groups

1. Give each student a file folder with the student’s name on it and paper
clips to clip on a question to the front. Questions can either be broad to
cover the whole book or specific questions can be asked for each section of a
book. This decision depends on the book chosen. (I am giving each of the 4-
6 members of a reading group a copy of the same nonfiction book so that we
can have a common text to work with and the students can support each
other in their work with schema.) Inside the file folder, glue a business
envelope to hold strips of paper which contain a student’s schema for a
topic. Provide a library card pocket for a wastebasket in which the student
can ―trash‖ schema that has been proven wrong. Trashed schema are kept in
the ―wastebasket‖ so that the students can reexamine how their schema
changed, and so the teacher can evaluate the students’ processing of the

2. Teach the students how to code their schema:

      Put a star on strips of paper which contain schema that was confirmed
      by their reading.

      Underline in colored pencil any new schema that was added during or
      after reading.
3. I have guided reading groups three days a week. Of the 4 groups that I
have, I see the lowest group on all 3 days and the other 3 groups on 2 days
each. The lowest group needs lots of support. I present them with a
question which will be answered in their reading of the next 1-2 pages.
They check through their schema strips that they wrote before we read the
book, to see if they have already written anything on the topic and pull those
strips out to share. I tell the students that they will read the next assigned
pages and that while they are reading they should be thinking about whether
the schema they have written is confirmed or disproved. They also need to
be thinking about what is the most important new information they are
learning so that it can be added to new schema strips. After the students
finish the assigned reading, we discuss how our schema has changed, put
stars by the schema that was confirmed, and trash any disproved schema.
Then we discuss what is important to add to new schema strips. This group
of students needs a lot of guidance in this area because they often want to
write down everything instead of sifting out the unimportant details from the
main ideas.

The other reading groups need various levels of support. I start all of the
groups out just like I do the lowest group, but the difference is that they are
able to do more on their own and less with me. It is still important, though
to spend some time each reading session processing what they have done
and sharing how they have decided what to confirm, trash, or add. They
really enjoy sharing what they have done with the small group, and it is an
excellent way for me to get close with the students and really see who is
grasping the strategy. They all get very excited when they are able to share
schema that was confirmed, new schema that they want to add, and even
schema that they have trashed!

                               Activity created by Debbie Miller
                               Adapted by Karen Carlson/Spring Trail

                   Activating Prior Knowledge/Schema
                            ~Talking Drawings~
Objectives:   To activate schema
              To provide information that shapes future teaching
              To provide a vehicle for students to measure learning
                 To make connections TS, TT, TW (for extension)

Materials:       Book that will be used to introduce subject matter
                 (Any text can be used, alter lesson to your needs)
                 Talking Drawings sheet (if you choose) or anything to draw on
                 Writing implements
                 Concrete item to activate schema (especially for younger students)
                 Making connections posters (for extension)
                 Chart paper/overhead transparency (for extension)
                 Timer (helps to keep students on track)

Process:         Introduce the book/area of study using the concrete item (ex: toy insects for an insect
                 unit, etc.) or by telling the title of the story. Show the cover of the book if you want to
                 help give a clue. (I normally do not show the book because I do not want them to draw
                 the picture on the cover.)

                 Invite students to quickly draw a picture that shows everything they know
                 about this subject. Take about 5 to 10 minutes for drawing time. Once the
                 time is up, have them turn to their neighbor and discuss their drawings—
                 what they know about the subject. Take about 5 minutes for each pair.
                 Use timer to help, set it for two and a half minutes so it goes off and then
                 let the next person talk for the remaining two and a half minutes.

                 Be sure that the drawings reflect an activation of schema/prior knowledge
                 about the subject matter. If not, try to engage that student in conversation
                 that helps them activate their prior knowledge/schema.
If not using for unit of study:
                  Read the story and discuss it as you normally would. Make comparisons to their
                  drawings and see if they learned anything new about the subject matter. This is where a
                  lesson just to work on activating schema would end.

Extension:       At this point, you can record the various ideas under K of a KWL chart and move into the
                 wonder questions as you make predictions about the story/subject. While recording on
                 the KWL chart students can write one or two word labels on their drawings as reminders.
                 (Be sure everyone is with you as you move on to predicting—only write during the
                 recording of the K.)

                 Read the story to the students and use the drawings to help make connections with the
                 text. You can have ―connection people‖ that hold the posters and/or write down the
                 connections that are made during and after reading the text. The ―connection people‖ can
                 record their specific type of connection. (Connections should be done as you go along in
                 your study and only after you have practiced with each type of connection.)

Management: This lesson can be carried out over several days or throughout a unit.
              First Day:
                    Activate Schema using Talking Drawings technique
                    Start KWL: Use Drawings for K, and make predictions for W
                    Collect drawings
              Day Two: (This can be done for every text used for every text in unit)
                    Review KWL chart (OWL can be used instead of KWL)
                    Read story
                    Make connections (record under L if using OWL)
                     Use W list of KWL to help generate what was learned for L.
                     Record ―what was learned‖ under the L of the KWL chart.
                Day Three: (You can do this as you see fit, mostly for OWL)
                     Read the connections one by one
                     Decide if response helped with the text. Mark it with a 1.
                     Decide if the response did not help. Mark it with a 2.
                     If child who made response disagrees, have them explain their thinking.
                     Stop here with L if using OWL—these are your links.
                Last Day: (Culmination of Unit)
                     Compare W to L of KWL and see if all was answered, etc.
                     Draw a picture representing what they know about the subject now
                     Use pre and post drawings as a comparison—authentic assessment

Talking Drawing Source: Talking Drawings: A Strategy for Assisting Learners by
Suzanne McConnell, Journal of Reading, December 1992/January 1993.

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