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					Using SIRS Digital Content

    A Lesson for Reading Comprehension
    and Digital Research

           Kellie Mullins and Tracey Zimmerman,
                    Pine Grove Middle
Project Overview

 In 7th grade Language Arts, students are
 exposed to the Holocaust through literature in
 their reading of Number the Stars and the play
 The Diary of Anne Frank. They were taken by
 the harsh treatment of the Jewish population
 during World War II and Hitler's reign and
 wanted more information.
Project Overview

   Students will utilize SIRS Researcher for
    personal/curricular inquiries and connections.
   Students will learn to navigate SIRS
   Students will learn to create keyword and Boolean
   Students will select an article to print
   Students will read and implement the newly
    learned reading strategy, INSERT, in order to share
    their thoughts and feelings (as a personal reflection
    piece) with the rest of the class.

   This mini-project will also have an art
    extension, where the students will paint wall
    tiles, reflective of the information gleaned
    from their source. A gallery walk, showcase,
    and short presentation will give each student
    an opportunity to share information about
    their inquiry into the past.
Instructional Partnership and
The Librarian taught the Language Arts

    To navigate SIRS Digital Content
   To create and use keyword and Boolean
Language Arts Teacher taught the

   The INSERT Strategy
   Tile Painting
Instructional Development
and Implementation
Library Media Connection

MSDE                             BCPS
 Students will demonstrate       Students will access and
  the ability to review,           navigate a database to
  evaluate and select media.       locate a variety of
 Students will demonstrate        informational texts.
  the ability to retrieve and     Students will identify and
  manage information.              use organizational patterns
 Learn and apply reading,         embedded within the
  research and critical            database.
  thinking skills to organize,
  and synthesize information
  in order to communicate
  new understanding.
Reading/Language Arts/English VSC
   Apply comprehension skills through exposure to a
    variety of texts, including traditional print and
    electronic texts
   Use strategies to make meaning from text
   Use strategies to demonstrate understanding of text
   Apply comprehension skill by selecting, reading and
    interpreting a variety of print and electronic
    informational texts
   Connect the text to prior knowledge or experience
Social Studies VSC Connections

   Students will understand the historical
    development and current status of the
    fundamental concepts and processes of
    authority, power and influence, with particular
    emphasis on the democratic skills and
    attitudes necessary to become responsible
   Students will describe the pros and cons of
    unlimited government, such as the
    authoritarian and dictatorship.
Fine Arts Content Standards: Visual Arts

   Students will demonstrate an understanding
    of visual art as an essential aspect of history
    and human experience.
   Students will plan artworks that use symbolic
    images and forms to convey selected beliefs,
    customs or values.
Project Activities
   A Comprehension Strategy
              What is INSERT?   And   Why teach it?

   A majority of students in middle school are beyond
    decoding instruction and need more assistance with
    comprehension to help them become successful,
    independent readers.
   Strategic reading allows students to monitor their own
    thinking and make connections between texts and their
    own experiences.
   Based on the Guided Comprehension Model developed by
    Maureen McLaughlin and Mary Beth Allen, this lesson
    introduced students to the comprehension strategy of
              What is INSERT?   And   Why teach it?

   Students learned the INSERT technique, which teaches
    them to monitor their thinking and comprehension using a
    coding system.
   Students also learned about character traits and
    qualities of Anne Frank and conditions in a Nazi
    Concentration Camp during the reign of Adolf Hitler.
    This coincided with their reading of the play, “The Diary
    of Anne Frank,” the novel, Number the Stars, and for
    many of the children, a GT World Cultures unit on World
    War II.
More on…     INSERT
Background and facts

   INSERT is a form of Guided
   Guided Comprehension is a context in
    which students learn comprehension
    strategies in a variety of settings using
    multiple levels and types of text. It is a
    three-stage process focused on direct
    instruction, application, and reflection.
   The Guided Comprehension Model
    progresses from explicit teaching to
    independent practice and transfer.
    Monitoring involves asking, "Does this make sense?" and clarifying
     by adapting strategic processes to accommodate the response.

    INSERT (i.e.: Interactive Notation System to Effective Reading
     and Thinking) provides students with opportunities for reflection.
     Students make connections between prior knowledge and text

    Current studies demonstrate that when students experience
     explicit instruction of comprehension strategies, it improves their
     comprehension of new texts and topics (Hiebert et al., 1998).

Hiebert, E.H., Pearson, P.D., Taylor, B.M., Richardson, V., & Paris, S.G. (1998). Every child a reader. Ann Arbor, MI:
    Center for the Improvement of Early Reading Achievement (CIERA).
                    THE LESSON

                 Teacher Preparation
   Familiarize yourself with the INSERT technique and
    symbols using the INSERT poster.

   Access, read, and become familiar with the article, “I
    Saw Anne Frank Die” by Holocaust Survivor, Irma
    Menkel. Anticipate places in the passage where you
    can use the INSERT symbols.
                    THE LESSON
                  Teacher Preparation

   Make individual copies of the articles for the
    student, as well as an overhead transparency.

   Copy the INSERT poster for each student and
    recreate it on chart paper or as an overhead
The Lesson       …(continued)

Student Instruction and Activities

   Objective:
        Today we will utilize the comprehension strategy,
        INSERT, in order to recognize its importance in
        helping us better understand what we read.

    1. Explain the strategy. Ask students if they have ever been
    reading something and realize they have no understanding of
    what they just read. Explain that you are going to teach them a
    strategy to help them monitor their reading and better
    understand texts.
   Display the INSERT poster and distribute individual copies to
    students as well. Show students each of the symbols and discuss
    what each symbol represents. Explain how students can write the
    symbols in the margins of a text or next to a word to symbolize
    their thinking during the reading. Also emphasize that before
    reading, students should think about what they already know
    about the topic. That way, they will be able to mark the sections
    that confirm or refute what they thought.
    (Note: You may want to have students practice writing each of the symbols and
    discuss why each one was chosen to represent the particular thought process. For
    example: Explain why a + would represent something that they did not previously
   2. Demonstrate the strategy. Display the article (either on an
    overhead or on chart paper). Ask them to watch and listen as you read
    the first paragraph and mark it with the INSERT symbols. Model the
    process for students. Make sure that you "think aloud" so that
    students can witness the entire thought process. You may also want to
    refer back to the INSERT poster to reinforce the meanings of the

   Continue reading the article. Stop after a few sentences in the next
    paragraph and have students aid in marking the appropriate INSERT
    symbols in the margin or next to the words in the article, and discuss
    their reasoning for adding those symbols.
   3. Guide students to apply the strategy. Ask students to begin
    by taking a minute to think about the things they already know
    about Anne Frank, World War II, Concentration Camps, etc… You
    may want to write their thoughts down on chart paper or just
    discuss them aloud. Review the INSERT symbols again with
    students. Hand out the article for the students and read the
    first paragraph or two of the passage together again. Have the
    students mark the margins or text with the INSERT symbols
    using their own connections.
   4. Practice in small groups. Divide students into
    groups of two or three. Ask them to work together
    to read the next few paragraphs of the article. Ask
    students to, individually, mark the INSERT symbols
    after the conclusion of each paragraph (encourage a
    second reading of the paragraph silently as they
    INSERT). Small groups should then discuss their
    symbol inserts.
   5. Practice individually. Stop students after
    reading a few paragraphs together, and have them
    complete the article reading and INSERT for the
    remainder of the article on their own. Bring the
    class back together and discuss the article
    through the use of the symbols.
   Reflect. Gather students as a whole class to discuss how
    using the INSERT technique helped them monitor their
    thinking. Was it easier to understand the passage using
    the INSERT symbols than if they had just read the
    passage silently?

    (NOTE: This lesson is intended as an introduction to the monitoring strategy. With
    continued practice, students should be able to apply the monitoring and INSERT
    strategy independently to other texts.)
Key Word and Boolean Searches
Students develop Research Questions:
 What happened to people in Concentration
 How many Jews were in hiding?

 What was it like in Auschwitz?

 Did America help the Jewish people?

 What happened to Otto Frank?
Key Word and Boolean Searches
   Students Brainstorm a list of keywords from
    their research questions
   Students learn linking strategies for AND, OR
    and NOT (but for this exercise, focus stayed
    with AND)
   Students create Boolean search
   Students search using both keywords and
    Boolean phrases to find article
   ..\Research Skills\Boolean Searching.doc
Navigating SIRS

   Subject Searches and Keyword/Natural
    Language Searches
   Advanced Search Function
   Article Sources
   Selecting an Article
                      Student Assessment/Reflections
   Assessment can be done informally through anecdotal notes and

   Students' understanding of the INSERT technique can be assessed
    using “I Saw Anne Frank Die ” article coded with the INSERT symbols

   Did students accurately use the INSERT coding symbols?

   Did they make valid reactions and connections to texts?

   You can also ask students to reflect in their comprehension
    journals/exit tickets about monitoring and their experience using the
    INSERT technique.

   How does using the INSERT technique help you monitor your thinking
    as you read?

   How do you think you will use the INSERT technique in the future?
Student Assessment/Reflections

                   Which was more effective:
                    Keyword searching or
                    Boolean searching?
                   How do you think you can
                    apply keywords and
                    Boolean searches
                   Did students select an
                    article that would increase
                    their understanding of their
Final Thoughts….
   Students enjoyed using symbols to aid in comprehension

                          - ? +
   Students enjoyed using the computers to find articles of their own
    interests. Students felt empowered by their understanding of search

   Students loved designing their tiles based on their
    newly gained and/or confirmed knowledge from
    their selected articles.
Tile Picture
Tile Footage

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