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Teacher Resources by Grade
|1st - 2nd||3rd - 4th|
|5th - 6th||7th - 8th|
|9th - 10th||11th - 12th|
Using Word Storms to Explore Vocabulary and Encourage Critical Thinking
|Grades||3 – 5|
|Lesson Plan Type||Recurring Lesson|
|Estimated Time||Seven 60-minute sessions|
During this lesson, students are introduced to the concept of working dogs and how they help society. Students read a variety of texts, learn relevant vocabulary, participate in purposeful writing, and are encouraged to share their perspectives. An inquiry model called POWER is used, in addition to a vocabulary strategy called Word Storms, which is designed to help students speak and write critically about the texts they read. Most of the resources for the lesson are found online.
Sample Word Storm Page: This printout helps students understand how to use the Word Storm process to learn new words.
Ellery, V. (2005). Creating strategic readers: Techniques for developing competency in phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension. Newark, DE: International Reading Association.
The following sequence of scaffolded learning adapted from this book is used in this lesson:
- Reading aloud and modeled writing: Using an interactive read-aloud, the teacher familiarizes students with specific vocabulary and models reading behaviors of fluent readers through think-aloud demonstrations. The teacher then demonstrates speaking/reading/writing connections through modeled writing.
- Shared reading and writing: The teacher and students interact with the text. A systematic schedule of word work is important during this time.
- Guided reading and writing: Students work in small groups to read and write, reinforcing and practicing the previous strategies and techniques.
- Independent reading and writing: Students spend time doing real and relevant reading and writing, which allows them to make connections and explore meaning.
Heffernan, L. (2004). Critical literacy and writer's workshop: Bringing purpose and passion to student writing. Newark, DE: International Reading Association.
Klemp, R.M. (2000). Word Storm: Connecting vocabulary to the student's database. In T.V. Rasinski, N.D. Padak, B.W. Church, G. Fawcett, J. Hendershot, J.M. Henry, et al. (Eds.), Teaching word recognition, spelling, and vocabulary: Strategies from The Reading Teacher (pp. 61–62). Newark, DE: International Reading Association.