IMG_9557My 2nd graders have been working on Into the Sea–a book about Emma L. Hickerson by Stephanie Herbek.  I chose this book 1. because it’s a fabulous book, and 2. these students were working on an ocean book in their small group within the classroom and I always love opportunities when I can connect with what they are doing in the classroom.  Students have been working on text features and note taking (using a T chart) within the classroom.

IMG_9558We started out by locating text features within the book and also using the book they had been using in the classroom as well.  We used their book from the classroom as somewhat of a “mentor text” as Linda Dorn’s new thinking in Guided Reading Plus is to add a “Preparing for the Phases” portion where you really build background knowledge the first portion to help the students become more successful in the reading of their new book.

I had the kids write down important vocabulary words that would help them in their reading and writing based off of a vocabulary graphic organizer I created myself using the one from Linda Dorn and then one I received from a colleague of mine.  If you would like a copy of what I used please let me know–I’d be happy to share that with you.

IMG_9560Students then read through Into the Sea with a partner and then were asked to create a T chart with their partner locating the equipment Emma needed for her job and the use for each piece of equipment.  Students were to sticky note the pages each time they found a piece of equipment for easy reference.

We started out as a group listing pieces of equipment and the use Emma had for each and then students broke up into partners to continue finding equipment.  We came back as a large group and shared all of the pieces of equipment and uses.  I started to write all of them on the board as they shared so if they didn’t have the same things other students had they would have a complete list.  They did such a good job of finding things that I ran out of room on my white board.  I was proud with how thorough they were with their findings.

IMG_9559The 2nd graders did a really great job of working collaboratively with each other and taking notes.  You can see in the photo to the left and then at the very top how students took notes on the table whiteboards as they read for quick reference in their book and then put their notes from their white board into the chart in their writing journals.

We’ve really been working on finding the important parts of the information we are given and summing up things in a more efficient and effective way.