For A Raisin in the Sun, I had students keep director's post-it notes, five directions for the characters per scene for reader's theater the next day. It was a bit messy, and a family emergency interrupted the flow, but I, for one, liked it better than the quizzes.
For An Ordinary Man, the memoir we're starting this week, though, post-its and Kahoots seem a little too tedious and haphazard. And it would take a lot of maneuvering to get those strategies to connect to the deep issues I really want to touch on.
So I set up a Google Community to address each of the quotes that spoke to me on my first read through. I had highlighted quotes on my Kindle app and added notes for questions I could ask students to help them connect the reading to their lives. I copied these quotes and question notes to a Google Doc broken up by chapter so that I could copy them onto separate topic sections in the Google Community and let students choose which of them spoke to them.
- Create a Google Community with the title of the book and/or movie you are focusing on.
- Upload a picture of the book for the Community picture and add a tagline about the book and movie.
- Make a discussion topic for each chapter with the due date in the topic titles.
- Make a discussion topic for each day you will be viewing the movie in class.
- Add discussion topics for important focal points of the unit. (I made a topic each for Setting and Narration, the two literary elements that will be the focus of our film/book study for this unit.)
- Add links to due date calendars, class blogs, or other pages students can refer to for more information.
- Save the community and invite all of the students from your class (incidentally, they didn't have Google Plus set up on their school accounts, so it was handy that I had their personal addresses from working with this particular group for the past 2 years.)
- Add directions for posting in the "About this community" section, for example:
Choose 5 prompts to respond to with at least 3 sentences each for each night's reading. If the reading is over 2 chapters, be sure to choose prompts from both.
- Open the first chapter's discussion topic and add the LAST question from that chapter for your first post.
- Add posts in reverse order up to the first question from the first chapter ending with a post asking for an overall reflection on the chapter (perhaps with special emphasis on an important theme or literary element).
If these students had better access, I might make this homework, but as it is, reading assignments are already at least 20-30 pages a night, so this will be our warmup for the duration of the unit.