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Think Aloud Comments for Our Daily Read Aloud 2: Breadwinner by Deborah Ellis

Think aloud comments help readers become engaged with the text. The reading strategy involves talking to yourself about what you're reading. Focus on what's important, ask yourself questions, or keep a running record of your ideas and reactions. It is a great way to keep track of your thoughts while listening to a read aloud or reading fiction and non-fiction. Try to post 1 think aloud per week. 



Make an Inference/Inferring

posted 9 Feb 2015, 11:27 by Ms. C Heiss Heiss
Make an Inference/Inferring

Writers won’t tell you everything. Sometimes you need to figure things out on your won. You need to learn how to use everything you read and everything you already know. That’s what making an inference means---taking something you read and putting it with something you know already to make an inference. Ultimately, inferences are conclusions drawn from logical reasoning.

For example, a character who is glaring and has clenched fist is probably angry. You do not know that for certain; you infer it. You take the fact that the character was glaring and had clenched fists and put that information with what you already know. You know that’s the way people who are angry act, so you infer the character is angry. You read between the lines. 

For example, “I think that Bear does care for Rafe, but is just really bad at showing it. I also think that the reason why Rafe's mother had supposedly chosen Bear's side is because Rafe's mother was just really tired of both of them arguing. I know that I would be really stressed out if I was in that situation. Maybe the punishment was so that Bear and Rafe could have some bonding time. I do not think she did it because she loves Bear more than Rafe.”

Picturing the Text or Visualizing

posted 9 Feb 2015, 11:27 by Ms. C Heiss Heiss
Picturing the Text or Visualizing

How do all my senses help me make connections to what I am reading?
What do you see in your mind as you read? Draw what you think happens when you are reading. The drawings are just a way to help you discover what happens when you read. 

For example, “These images help me hear…feel…smell…taste…A feeling I had was…When I read…a mental image I had was…I can visualize the coming of fall and the leaves turning scarlet and gold. This is a very descriptive passage.”

For example, “When I read about Rafe and Bear arguing, it makes me feel sad and I start to picture my brother and stepdad arguing. My brother did not get along with my stepfather and they were always arguing about something. Finally, my brother couldn’t take it anymore and he went to live with my real dad.”

Evaluating/Making a Judgment

posted 9 Feb 2015, 11:26 by Ms. C Heiss Heiss
Evaluating/Making a Judgment

You make judgments every day. You decide which friends, movies, and music you like and which you don’t. As a reader, you will also be called upon to use what you know to make judgments. For example, suppose a novelist creates a character who speaks rudely and who is sloppily dresses. The writer will probably want you to form a negative opinion of this character. That’s probably the reason the writer included actions most readers would disapprove of—to create an impression and send readers a signal. 

For example, the most important part of this book is …

You can also evaluate the author’s purpose by asking these questions: 

Explain: Have you learned something helpful as a result of the reading?
Entertain: Did you enjoy the selection? Did it make you laugh or cry? Would you recommend it to others?
Persuade: Have you changed your mind as a result of the reading?
Enlighten: Did the reading help you think about a topic or idea in a new way?

When you’ve finished reading, look closely at individual parts and pieces. That will help you create a thorough evaluation of the subject. Pull together the different elements of the story or article. Ask yourself how the details add up and what were the strongest and weakest parts.

For example, “I think when Rafe going up to Miller and starting a fight was wrong. It would have been better if they did not start fighting. Rafe should have learned a lesson from his actions. However, since Rafe is continuing to break school rules, he did not learn from his actions."

Synthesizing

posted 9 Feb 2015, 11:25 by Ms. C Heiss Heiss
Synthesizing

When you synthesize, you look at a number of parts or elements and pull them together. You consider various parts and figure out how they make a whole. Synthesizing is like gathering up the pieces of a puzzle and turning them this way and that until you figure out how they all fit.

To evaluate a novel or story, you need to look at many different elements, such as the plot, parts of a novel at once. Use synthesizing to look closely at certain details throughout a work or to see how different elements are connected.

To use synthesizing with non-fiction, you may want to see how the beginning fits with the end or how the details in one paragraph connect to those in another. In a biography or autobiography, for example, you want to know how the person grew up, what events shaped his or her life, what character traits the person has, and so on. You want to synthesize, or pull together, all of the information into one clear picture of the person.

For example, “I think Rafe’s bad behaviour at school is connected to his home life. In a school video about bullying, I learned that bullies often have bad home lives or may be bullied at home. Rafe probably gets into a lot of trouble at school because his stepfather bullies him at home.

Making Connections

posted 9 Feb 2015, 11:24 by Ms. C Heiss Heiss   [ updated 9 Feb 2015, 11:24 ]
Making Connections

When you read, you should make connections between things you read in the book and your experiences/real life. Connecting prior knowledge and experiences to reading deepens comprehension and extends your reading experiences. You need to decide if the connections are between the book and your personal experiences with family and friends (“text to self”), the book and another book, movie, television show, article, media, etc. (“text to text”) or the book and world events, news stories at school, in your neighbourhood, in your community, etc. (“text to world”). See the examples below: 

Text to Self:
This chapter reminds me of my room, because my room is really messy, since I have a lot of things. Just like the main character, Rafe Khatchadorian, where in the picture, the author showed us, in chapter 9, his room where he keeps everything he owns. He says his mom says it's messy, but he says that he just has too many belongings. 

Text to Text:
This text differs from the one we read last year because… 
I can connect to Chapter 9 in the book “Middle School: Worst Years of My Life” through the movie “Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules”. In the movie, they show us Rodrick’s room. This is the place where Greg is getting his drum lessons. The similarities in this scene and in Chapter 9 are the room’s layout. Rafe’s room wasn’t really disorganized but there was plenty of stuff in it. This is the same as Rodrick’s room. 

Text to World:
“At Green Glade and other schools all over the world, students break rules. On CP24, the news said that a high school student was suspended for vandalizing his school. In our society and the world around us, people break rules every day. Sometimes the rules are small ones like being late for class. Other times, they are big ones like robbing a bank. Regardless of the type of rule, there are always consequences for breaking rules.”
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