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How to Close Read the Language of Film

When students are challenged to “close read” a movie, they must not only learn how to deconstruct the story, they must also understand the many techniques that are used by filmmakers to create the total effect, says expert Frank Baker.

Focus on the Reader, Not the Complex Text

It’s hard to put down Readers Front & Center: Helping All Students Engage with Complex Texts, says our reviewer. Dorothy Barnhouse shows teachers how to focus on the reader, not the text, by using conferencing, questioning & other student-centered strategies.

How We Write Out Loud: Envisioning Hugo Cabret

Having helped her students visualize scenes and characters during read alouds, Mary Tarashuk tries the same idea with writing. She and her students “write aloud” as they create text to match the opening illustrations from The Invention of Hugo Cabret. Then they envision their own stories.

Creating Cross-Curricular Text Sets for the Middle Grades

Teachers can help students explore important connections across different genres and subjects using “text sets” – collections of books and other media with a common theme. In this MiddleWeb article, teacher educator Amanda Wall details an assignment creating text sets for ELA and math.

Reengage Your Readers with Digital Microstories

Too much close reading is boring, say Mike Fisher & Danielle Hardt, as students comb through fiction, constantly analyzing lots of text. Ask them to read and write digital microstories. They’ll build evaluation & synthesis skills and have some fun.