January 4, 2017

Author’s Point of View: How we REALLY Learned the Style of a Multiple Choice Question


     Yesterday we took a  look at how I taught Author's Point of View with my students.  I had some great ideas of where we were going to go with our work, and today that's what we are going to take a look at!  
     After our great experiment in sharing questions. we began to branch off.  Because it was after Thanksgiving Break, we had to move onto a new story.  This really bummed my kids out because they were totally into sharing the questions they wrote and teaching the class!  I used this momentum to flow into the new story.  For this week, we used the story Whooping Cranes from the Wonders Anthology.  This was a beautiful story tracking the work to save the Whooping Cranes from extinction.  I started this story with a promise to my students that they would again be asking questions, and I was interested to see if they would hold the information we had learned before break.  So, here's the requirements I gave them:
1.  Write an Author's Point of View question with you literacy partner on the part of the story that you are assigned.
2.  It must be multiple choice.
3.  You must have all the correct parts to a multiple choice question and use a question stem from the Author's Point of View list.  

     What did I get-blank stares! This was the ah-ha moment for ME!  Even though I had been stressing, and sharing, and showing how multiplication questions worked, they REALLY didn't understand how to build one, how they REALLY worked!  To solve this problem, I did a sample on the board.  I showed how I could write the question using the question stems and the "assigned" page from my book.  After I wrote the question, I showed them how to write two very wrong answers using the answer stems on the Author's Point of View page, a close answer (which, by the way, some kids still debated as right) and a write answer.  This was eye opening to me!  Yet, it shouldn't be!  We say over and over how students NEED to do it before they can really understand it!  This was that moment!  Off I sent them, to see what they would produce!

    Once I got my "in need of help" students off and running, I began looking at questions.  I had one group of students who were of track with using the question stems, but once I redirected them, they really seemed to move along.  Most groups got stuck on the "close" answer.  Once they were past that, the rest was easy.  I approved their question, they wrote them on chart paper, and prepared to have a gallery walk!

     Normally, I would just set the questions up on group tables.  This time I wanted the kids to have space to think and work through their questions.  It totally worked to set them up as a clock type of rotation.  Students carried their book, clipboard, paper, and pencil with them as they worked through the questions.  

Needless to say, this was very highly engaging.  Not only did they learn more about Author's Point of View, they learned how to write a multiple choice questions, how to better answer that type of question, how to pick correct answers, how to use answer stems to guide their thinking, and they became more independent in understanding how Author's Point of View works!  

     We didn't finish here!  I have one more great day to share!  So, come on back tomorrow and see what I did to determine their independent level of learning on Author's Purpose and some data information to support this awesome learning opportunity!  

     Be sure to read more at the first  post  telling you how I started these lessons and again at this post, where we have left off!  

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