Think Aloud for Read Aloud

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hey educators my name is Megan Beth and

today we're going to take a look at what

planning a think aloud for a read aloud

might look and sound like remember read

Aloud's offer a great deal to our

students especially when we're working

in small groups with students who

require higher levels of scaffolding and

support the ultimate goal of reading is

comprehension and when we demonstrate

our thinking to our students when

reading we can really help them begin to

figure out what types of thinking they

can do when they are reading read

Aloud's offer us chances to model and

practice comprehension with our students

build their content area knowledge and

it can help us to develop our students

vocabulary and thinking skills

the first step to planning a read aloud

is selecting the text what's the purpose

of the lesson this matters a great deal

when selecting the text as you want to

select a text that will be appropriate

for your purpose

when using a text for a read aloud you

can focus on comprehension strategies

inference making character analysis

authors craft or purpose there's really

so much you can do but remember it's

best to be specific and laser focused on

your lessons so you don't get carried

away with the read aloud focus on one

thing you can use the text again later

if it has multiple purposes that it can

fulfill it's also important to not just

think about your lesson but the specific

needs of your students I want to focus

on reading comprehension skills

specifically monitoring comprehension so

I've selected a text that I think will

provide many opportunities to practice

this skill the text Diary of a worm

written by Doreen Cronin is a fictional

account of a worms life it's told from

the point of view of the diary of the

worm but it contains several pieces of

information about worms and their lives

you could say this text is a hybrid

between narrative and information the

students who I plan to work with in a

small group setting need some additional

time to think about the difference

between what is real and what is fiction

so this text will be a great way for me

to think about my teaching goal

monitoring comprehension and the

specific needs of my students within

that goal I have my focus monitoring

comprehension and I have my text diary

of a worm

I'm ready to move on to the next step of

planning a read aloud I need to read

through the text and think about how

much I can read per meeting typically

you want to chunk the text into 200 to

250 words but if you're using a picture

book it's also important to consider the

time needed to read the visuals in the

story which can play a major role in

monitoring comprehension so let's take a

look and see where to stop I can see

that the story starts in March and ends

in August stopping at the end of each

month is a little too short so I think I

will split the book into thirds it will

take three meetings with my students to

read this text completely out loud now

that I know where my stopping points are

I need to look through each section and

determine if there are any vocabulary

words that I need to explicitly teach is

there any background knowledge my group

of students will need to understand the

selections where in this text or I want

to stop and ask questions and what

questions should I ask when I stop

remember we want a more thoughtful

exploration of the text through this

type of exploration students learn how

to argue for or against points raised in

the discussion resolved ambiguities in

the text and draw conclusions or

inferences about the text so the

questions we ask need to be beyond

identification level questions we really

want to ask questions that will get the

kids thinking deeply about the text and

what is happening in the text let's take

a walk through the first section of this

text and see what it would look or sound

like to plan for a think aloud while

reading aloud you definitely want to

keep your group of students in mind

because who you're working with will

make a difference about what things that

you're going to call to attention right

and remember our overall focus is

monitoring comprehension so we want to

think about where our kids might get

slowed down and plan for ways to stop

and think out loud at that part as far

as vocabulary words Tunnel it's

definitely something that's going to

come up and I'm gonna want to stop and

think about with my kids right so I'm

gonna just write some of these down

right now to help me remember like I'm

looking at the visual right here and

it's just a picture right but it's going

to matter a lot for comprehending this

page when what's happening the fact that

it says

eight I think I'm gonna need to

definitely stop there and talk with my

kids about what is bait and hopscotch

I think that if there was a visual there

for our students they would probably

easily be able to determine hop scotch

from the context but because we're

looking up as if we're coming up from

the hot hopscotch area and these we're

thinking about a group of students with

special needs

we're probably definitely gonna have to

stop and top talk about the word

hopscotch you would continue to do this

for each section but right now we're

just gonna focus on the first section

because that's the first section we're

reading with our kids and that's all we

need to plan for it today so I've got

some words in mind so now I need to

think about what kind of questions might

come up for my kids or what kind of

questions might I want to stop and ask

them to encourage them to have a

discussion that's gonna go beyond just

identifying something on the page

because remember we don't just want to

do identification level questions we

really want to help our kids go deep and

think deeply about what's happening in

the text first and foremost we could

have a conversation about because we're

wanting to focus on what is real and

what is not real that's something that

my students are struggling with so I

think the diary aspect is going to be

very important would an earthworm really

write a diary if they wouldn't why is

that something that the author chose to

do so that's going to be a question that

I'm gonna ask the one thing you really

want to keep in mind is we're planning

for a think aloud and reading a lot in

front of our kids and we want to be

planned and have these moments where we

know we're gonna stop to support them

but we wanted to come across authentic

so anything I'm writing or doing now I

have to repeat in front of the kids I'm

not going to pull out my pre-written

sticky note and say hey guys here's the

thing I already planned it it's it's

going to be authentic in front of them

so anything you do in this planning

period is just to help fix in your mind

what you're going to do when you're with

the kids so wood in wood and earthworm

keep a diary

remember to go deeper with questions you

can say why tell me more about that what

makes you think that is there something

from your life or your experience that

makes you think that remember we're

trying to get the kids to talk more

teachers talking less so I'm just gonna

write tell me more on my sticky note to

help me remember that I'm just gonna

stick this back in my little planning

notebook to come back to then as I keep

going here I can see a spider and a worm

hanging out Woodworks and spiders really

be friends that's gonna be something my

kids are probably gonna want to talk

about it's also something that can lead

to a deeper authentic research question

because we can actually look up and

research do spiders and worms get along

so we can begin to see the difference

between what is fiction and what is real

so our spiders and worms friends again

you want to write these so that they'll

be fixed in your mind but it's not gonna

be something you have stored you're

going to be doing it in front of your

small group of students oh this page

about the bait right it's talking about

fishing season started today we all dug

deeper and there's some images here

right so why would why would worms need

to dig deeper during fishing season

there's a lot of conversation in that

question and then we can get into that

vocabulary word we can talk about bait

what is it that worms are well they're

bait what is bait why would we want to

hide and not become bait right so

there's a lot of conversation there that

can help us not just with monitoring

comprehension but again once again

thinking about our teaching goal what's

real and what's not real so that's just

a little we just went through the first

section there we could keep going

obviously you want to do this with the

whole book so we want this to be natural

in front of our students even though

we're writing the questions now we will

write them over and over again in front

of our students as if we were asking

them for the first time what we did here

is just for planning to generate

possible questions for your students

when you're actually with your students

you might even end up changing some of

these in the moment or creating totally

new ones but

because you're gonna be responsive to

the needs of your students this is the

way we can plan for thinking aloud while

we're reading aloud before we go let's

take a look at the read aloud cycle and

remind ourselves what we discussed today

the first thing we need to do is select

a text consider our purpose and our

students we will then chunk that text

into sections of 200 to 250 words or

less depending on the needs of our

students and the amount of visuals in

the book we want to select vocabulary

concepts that we need to specifically

teach or talk about and be aware of

those as we're planning are read aloud

before reading we will preview the

selection and introduce the vocabulary

words for the days chunk to our students

we will then read the section aloud to

students and in this read aloud cycle it

says we won't stop but since we're

working with students in small groups

thinking about their specific needs we

are going to take time to stop and think

out loud and ask questions which is why

we made sure to plan for that then we

will have our students retell the text

to us maybe making an inference and we

will scaffold the use of their

vocabulary when we're able to we really

just want to make sure that all of our

students have opportunities to use the

specific vocabulary words that we have

been able to teach them through this

read aloud then we can reread the text

directing our students to listen for

things like the target vocabulary or

other things that we discussed the final

step after reading is extending

comprehension through deep processing of

vocabulary knowledge and text content we

can have the students turn and talk we

can have them write we can have them

create their own endings to the stories

there's so many things and you if you

look at your read aloud cycle you'll be

able to think more about that

to recap select a text make sure you

consider your teaching purpose and the

needs of your students chunk the text

where will you stop find vocabulary

words what words do you want to spend

some time on create questions think

about questions you could ask your

students that would create discussion

feel free to adjust these questions as

you're actually doing the read aloud but

do not go into the read aloud without

having any plan questions thanks for

joining me today as we thought about

planning for

aloud for your small group of students