8th Grade Social Studies
7 Steps to Building a Language Rich Classroom
- One strategy I will try in my classroom is...
Step 1: What to say instead of "I DON'T KNOW" p. 11
- Would you please repeat the question?
- May I please have some more information?
- May I ask a friend?
- May I have some time to think?
- Where could I find more information?
Step 2: Speak in Complete Sentences p. 17
- Students write the same way that they speak.
- If we expect them to write in complete sentences, we should also expect them to speak in complete sentences.
- Provide students with sentence stems and starters.
- Give them the gift of Academic Language!
- One reason women's rights are important is...
- In addition...
Step 3: RANDOMIZE AND ROTATE WHEN CALLING ON STUDENTS p. 23
The goal is to have everyone involved in discussions so that we can assess all students' understanding of concepts, not just those students who enjoy participating.
Phrases to avoid:
- "Who can tell me...?"
- "Let's see who knows...?"
- "Does anyone know...?"
- "Can someone tell the class...?"
Step 4: Total Response Signals p. 29
Response signals allow students to prepare for oral or written participation.
Response: Every student makes a choice
Signal: Give a response with a signal
Fold the Line
- Review each phrase from the Preamble to the Constitution.
- Select one and create a non-linguistic representation of that phrase on a post-it note.
- Be prepared to describe your non-linguistic representation with a partner using the following sentence stem:
I drew this picture to represent _________________ because...
Step 5: USE VISUALS AND VOCABULARY STRATEGIES THAT SUPPORT YOUR OBJECTIVES p. 35
- Photos, drawings, movie clips, graphic organizers, etc…all scaffold student understanding of new content vocabulary.
- Visuals also provide structured opportunities to use new words in context, increasing retention of new vocabulary and depth of understanding.
Step 6 & 7: HAVE STUDENTS PARTICIPATE IN STRUCTURED CONVERSATIONS, READING, and WRITING ACTIVITIES p. 43 & p. 49
•Much more engaging because the process includes 100% student participation.
•Provides enough structure to get all students involved both physically and mentally.
•Maximizes “engagement” time in the classroom and minimizes single-student responses.
•Reading and writing activities should be purpose-driven and strategies selected should scaffold the types of thinking that need to occur for complete understanding.
•Clearly define the purpose, plan and the process for each activity.
•Students gain a deeper understanding of content concepts.
Benefits of QSSSA
What is QSSSA?
S- Thinker's Chin
S- Talk to a Partner
S- One way the Constitution has created a "more perfect Union" is...
A- The person with the longest first name