Teacher resources and professional development across the curriculum

Teacher professional development and classroom resources across the curriculum

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Engaging With Literature: A Video Library, Grades 3-5
Engaging With Literature

About This Video Library

Lesson Builder

Hints for Site Leaders
Video Titles:

1. Signposts

2. Voices in the Conversation

3. Starting Out

4. Responding
to Literature

5. Sharing
the Text

About This Video Clip
Featured Texts »
Classroom Snapshot »
Classroom Lesson Plan »
Professional Reflection »
Teacher Tools »
Additional Resources »

6. Building Community

7. Book Buddies

8. Finding
Common Ground

9. Discussion

Site Map

5. Sharing the Text

About This Video Clip

"Discussion is really important to the students because they learn from each other...They may be confused about something, and they may not admit it, or they may not even be aware that they were confused or didn't understand something. But...the discussion really enables them to clarify things that they've read."

BJ Namba, 3rd-Grade Teacher
Punahou School
Honolulu, Hawaii
Ms. Namba understands that her students are lifelong envisionment builders, and her goal during the year is to help them become increasingly independent. By year's end, she wants them to be completely responsible for their own literature discussions without needing her facilitation. Throughout the year, Ms. Namba uses a variety of "engagements" — activities that encourage conversation and focus on learning to use the literature to make personal connections and appreciate perspectives — either those presented in a text or by classmates — other than their own.

Ms. Namba believes in the power of what her students learn from the literature discussions in their book clubs — a sense of responsibility, ways to make meaning from texts and information, connections to themselves, their worlds, and other texts, appreciation and respect for multiple points of view, and cooperation. These, she believes, are lifelong lessons.

In this video, you will see Ms. Namba and her third graders working together in literature book clubs centered on five different novels. In this case, Ms. Namba has chosen a number of books that focus on characters and issues quite different from those this group of students is likely to encounter in their own lives.

As you watch, note the ways in which the students assume key roles in the discussion. Ms. Namba's questions typically ask for clarification or development of student-developed lines of thought rather than directing the discussion. Clearly, such discussions are the result of a great deal of previous training. In addition, these discussions take time as students work to develop their understandings of the literature and as well as their skillful use of book club time. Ms. Namba feels that this time is well spent because of the quality of student learning it allows.

For resources that can help you use this clip for teacher professional development, preservice education, administrative and English/language arts content meetings, parent conferences, and back-to-school events, visit our Support Materials page. There you will find PDF files of our library guide, classroom lesson plan, student activity sheets, and other Teacher Tools.


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