In my last post I discussed the beginning of my journey with the Super Six Comprehension Strategies. I have found that I use the Super Six in every lesson I teach— from Years 7-12 and I simply cannot teach without using them. If you would like to start your Super Six journey with a FREE 28 page Super Six Mini Bundle, click here for more details.
One of the most successful ways I have used the strategies was with my Year 9 Music class earlier in the year. The Assignment for my students was to complete an analysis of a song and short biography on the composer/performer. Prior to using the Super Six I would get a “copy and paste” of a biography that the students found online, and this did not help build their skills in any way, shape or form!
So my mission was to lead them through the finding of information, and then actually using that research to write their own short biographical paragraph. I decided to include a few different pages from my Super Six Reading Strategies book (which I use all the time!) in the assignment. (You can try my favourite strategies and activities for FREE by clicking here to get your free 28 page Super Six Mini Bundle!)
The class that is discussed in this post used Music Analysis Assignment 1. You can purchase each of the parts individually, but save yourself some hard earned $$$ and buy the Bundle! I have used these Assignments every year, for the last ???? years!!! (It’s been too long in the classroom!)
Here are the steps we took to complete the paragraph. It is quite detailed what I asked them to do, but the results and the skills they learned were certainly well worth it.
The very first step, after finding and printing their information, was for them to use the MAKING CONNECTIONS strategy. I asked them to look at all of the headings, pictures, and any other parts of their research before actually reading it. They are very used to doing this strategy as I always use this strategy before reading any text in class with them. I found that by printing their information out they could write/draw/highlight all over it as they needed.
I then asked them to read through the information and highlight any words that were unfamiliar to them—this is a simple MONITORING strategy. They usually asked me questions about word meanings here, I would either tell them the meanings or ask them to look it up, depending on the student and their ability levels.
They were then asked to read it a second time—just for familiarisation
After the second reading I asked them to complete a QUESTIONING activity which was included in their assignment booklet. (see the image below). The theory is if they can write a question about the information they can answer it!
The next strategy to use was SUMMARISING. The students had a few different options of pages to complete here—and I let them choose which ones to complete, again depending on their ability level.
After this they were given a Biography Paragraph Planning sheet. This was a must do step in the process—it forced them to only put in the details that were important and not just trivial dribble!!!!
The final step was to actually write the paragraph. Even my lower ability students were able to do this, they just needed a little more support along the way, and overall I was very pleased that I actually got original pieces of writing and not a “copy and paste” from the internet.
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Until next time
Julia from Jooya