Bucyrus Literacy Corner
Parent Newsletter, March 11, 2022, Volume 1, Issue 2
Bucyrus Secondary School World History students recently learned a new comprehension strategy--reciprocal teaching. The purpose of reciprocal teaching is to help students reach their full potential as readers and thinkers. Along with speaking and writing skills, it emphasizes comprehension, connection, and critical thinking.
Reciprocal teaching fosters in students a sense of agency which means they can use simple guidelines to make their way through any text successfully. In groups, students read supplemental text, summarize it, question and connect it to what they already know, clarify their understanding of the material, and predict what the author will discuss next.
Mrs. Bostic's students learned the four reading tasks and put them to use with three Brown University articles on the worldwide human, economic, and social/political costs of war since 9/11. Practicing the four reading tasks in groups helped the students think about what they do while reading and consider the various contexts where they might use the strategy.
During the exercise, the students were able to identify vocabulary words that were new or challenging (e.g., militarization, encroachment, civil contractors, infrastructure, and macroeconomics), to ask quality questions (How do countries get the money for war?), to make relevant connections to what they already know (applying 9/11 profiling to Asian discrimination in the post-Covid world and the term encroachment to the initial situation in Ukraine), to hear how others interpreted what was read, and to provide specific evidence of how life has changed since 9/11.
For their first time through reciprocal teaching, they made quite a strong showing!