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Brainy Apples: Notice & Note Book Study- Post 2
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Notice & Note Book Study- Post 2

Welcome to the 2nd post of our book study of Notice & Note by Beers and Probst. I hope you were able to read the first post over at DillyDabbles blog. Every Tuesday and Thursday now through July we will tackle sections of this book providing our thoughts and experiences, and we certainly hope you will chime in, too! There is a link-up at the end of each post so you can either read others' posts about the sections, comment with your own thoughts or questions, or link up your own post about the sections. Check out this page for our schedule. I absolutely LOVE this book. In fact, I love it so much I am reading it again! I read it last summer, but there are so many goodies contained I have to jump back in. So, without further adieu, let's dive into Part 1, Questions 3 and 4 (pages 20-26)!

2014 Notice and Note Book Study

Part 1
Question 3: Where Does Rigor Fit?
I am really glad the authors spent a little bit of time discussing rigor because I think this term is used very loosely, and, depending on who is using it, the meaning tends to vary greatly. The authors did a really good job at defining rigor not as how hard a text is or by the difficulty level of the questions we ask, but rather as the type of interaction taking place between the reader and the text. They describe rigor as the energy and attention we put into a text to understand it. Increased rigor does not mean harder. I think this is crucial to understanding how to provide rigorous activities in our classrooms. If we give students a hard text, they are going to be spending WAY more time trying to decode the words and understanding what is going on at the surface level. Rigorous reading takes place when students are authentically engaged with the text. What does that mean? Well, it means that students are committed to comprehending a text at a deeper level. You can start out by giving your students easier texts to read until their confidence grows and they have a firm understanding of your expectations. Over time you can increase the complexity of the text (which text complexity will be covered in a future post).

Question 4: What Do We Mean by Intellectual Communities?
Again, I really love that the authors took time to discuss the social aspect of school. Yes, we are all aware that test scores are important, but that isn't the end goal of school. Our end goal should be to facilitate students to become curious risk-takers who are life-long learners and problem solvers. How can we expect our students to become positive contributors to society if they don't know how to engage in conversations with peers? Discourse in your classroom helps students learn how to listen, communicate, and think critically about the ideas of others. How can we expect students to learn these skills if they are simply sitting and listening to the teacher?

These sections were pretty short but very concise. I would love to know your thoughts/questions about rigor and intellectual communities in your classroom. The authors are setting the stage for the role of Close Reading in the classroom and how to implement it. I can't wait to continue reading with you!

**Please excuse any typos as I don't have the super power of being perfect :)

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  1. I've been following your book clubs posts about this book and blogged about it at: I may just have to order this book! Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I'm learning a lot and I don't even have the book!

    1. I am glad you are getting something out of it! I would highly recommend this book as your next purchase for professional learning. It's so awesome I am reading it for the 2nd time! :)

  2. I am dying to talk to someone else who has read this book. I am trying to follow your book study. I was already reading this book b/c my sister-in-law recommended it and purchased it for me. I teach 3rd grade and I want someone's opinion if you think this would work with that age group.

    Right now, I have a chart that we refer to for reading comprehension that highlights things like how to predict, connect, summarize, question, infer and evaluate.

    I am comfortable with teaching these strategies so Notice and Note is out of my "comfort zone" but I love learning new and better ways to do things. I will say that I normally have to point out important things to notice and I would love it if my students were able to do that more independently!

    1. I do think it would work with 3rd graders. When I taught 1st grade enrichment reading kids, I taught these sign posts and they did quite well with them. My last 3rd grade class was before I had read this book, but I certainly would have used the sign posts with them. I think overall it really depends on the kiddos in your class. If you have a pretty average class, then absolutely. If you have lower kids, then you may not want to teach all the sign posts. Some sign posts are more prevalent than others, partly because some of them are primarily in more complex texts, and, if you have lower kids, you may not read the more complex texts with them (but you may through read alouds and you could definitely model how to use the sign posts).

      I think what is true with most strategies holds true with the sign posts in that, you are going to have to do a lot of modeling at first, and working with the kids before expecting them to notice the sign posts on their own. I really kind of let my kids go at their own pace. I didn't tell them they had to use the sign posts, because I felt like when they were ready and comfortable enough, they would. I just made sure I did a lot of modeling and thinking aloud for them. The last year I taught, I also had 3rd and 4th grade EIP reading, and I taught the sign posts to those kiddos, and, although it took them longer to being noticing them, they did eventually. My goal for them was as along as they used most of them by the end of the year, it would be a success because they had never heard of them before. I also took my time introducing each sign post, one at a time, and was very deliberate in the text choices I made in highlighting the sign posts. I wanted to make sure the text I chose clearly contained the sign post we were working on.

      I had a goal for myself the first year I used the sign posts, that I would incorporate 1 sign post every 2 months because I didn't want to overwhelm myself. If I incorporated more than 1 every 2 months, then I felt like I was doing well. I would suggest that to you if you are wanting to use the sign posts. Aim for 1 every 2 months. If you keep that pace, you won't get through all the sign posts, but some of the sign posts aren't present in every text you will read. I would use the more common sign posts at first, and that way if you don't get to all of them, you have at least taught the main ones. The following year you will be more comfortable with it :)

      It honestly took me a little bit of time to figure out how to incorporate the sign posts with what I was already doing (I also had anchor charts for the comprehension strategies like you) and I didn't want to throw those to the wayside. But after a couple of months, I was able to get into a groove, and I am sure you will, too!

      Definitely follow our book study because as we progress into the sign posts, hopefully people will share their experiences so you will be able to gain more insight and begin thinking about how you can use them in your classroom :)

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