Today the ninth grade class I work with met for a discussion about their books. They did a phenomenal job! I stood in awe as I watched the groups come together, students listen and respond to one another, and understandings emerge. The thoughts in my mind spinning around so quickly they tripped over each other
- They are staying on a line of thinking and figuring out the important ideas.
- They are supportive and friendly.
- He’s genuinely interested in what his group mate is saying.
- He really read the book and thought about it.
- Look at her, referecing the page number to clarify the misunderstanding — and in such a tactful way.
- It’s loud in here, but everyone — yes everyone — is focused on his/her group.
- This is amazing.
- What, did he just say, Thanks for saying that, I would have never thought about that before?
- Remarkable, it’s been twenty five minutes and no one has said We’re DONE. They are all in the thick of their discussions.
Note: Credit must be given to Nancy Steineke’s remarkable book: Reading & Writing Together: Collaborative Literacy in Action, which I’ve absorbed and have used as a guide to literature circles.
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