One item we used a lot in my Interpretation Book Club session at TCRWP was the Narrative Writers Aim Towards Goals Such As… sheet (see picture above) found in the Middle School Writing Units of Study. Our instructor recommended using it as early as third grade to help students talk about author’s purpose and intent.
Each of the boxes should have previously been taught in a minilesson so we began our work in partnerships with these directions: “Talk about the ones you know (use the words AND the pictures).” We then watched a digital text and used the cards to finish this sentence: The authors goal is to (State text in one of the boxes)…when…(provide example from text).
The next day we added the above technique cards to deepen our discussion even further. It was recommended to copy these technique cards in a different color and even cut them out so students can stick them in their books when they find evidence.
Here are the prompts used when using both set of cards together:
- The author’s goal is to…(State Goal Square)…(SHOWS student read text)
- The author does this by…(State Technique Card)…(SHOWS student read text)
- For instance…(Refer to text)
- This example illustrates/shows…(provide reason, explain thinking, no right answer, higher level thinking)…(SHOWS student UNDERSTOOD text)
If students were going to write out their thinking before a book talk you might provide this scaffolding:
The author used __(Insert Technique)___ to ___(insert goal) _____. I’m noticing the author seems to have ______________. He/She might have done this by _______________.
The cards were easy to use and the pictures were engaging. They worked well with adults and it will be interesting to try with students!