Wednesday, May 1, 2013


Connect:  This thinking routine was to continue the work our class has done on Fridays with non-fiction articles.  We had been doing the red/yellow/green light as our normal routine, so we thought it would be fun to switch it up.  I have been very hesitant to use this routine, but after reading it had wanted to try it.  I finally was brave enough to get it a shot!  

What I did:  Lately our Friday lemonades have been very student directed as we had done the routine for over 14 weeks!  They share and lead discussions and I just facilitate more than anything.  This week I was very deliberate in my demonstrations and modeling.  We had examples from previous articles and newspapers to show them what they could look like.  They had very little schema about writing them, and so we did a lot of examples together about our field trip from the day before.  We were getting a lot of answers like “Field Trip” and eventually through examples from me and Jaime they got to “Students see Tropical Rainforest in Denver!”.  For dividing the students this week I took all the girls and Jaime took all the boys.  I made sure to keep circling around and helping them through their thinking.  The final product was actually pretty good!  The girls seemed to get a deeper understanding of what we were looking for and the boys didn’t quite get there.

Extend:  My plan is to use this routine again because it was a great way for students to pull from the 3 parts of our traffic light and then synthesize it together in one sentence.  I also think I will continue to have them work in groups or partners as it still seems like a lot for each child to do at this point.

Challenge:  I think the students overall did a great job on their headlines.  It was much more successful than I thought it was going to be.  I think the biggest challenge was building enough background information and schema about what the headlines look like.


  1. I would really like to know why your results with the girls were so much more impressive than my results with the boys! Your little ladies did a super job, and it looks like they put a lot of effort into their work. Whatever you did... nice job!

  2. I use headlines in my classroom every Monday to have kiddos synthesize the weekend's events. I love that it makes them sythesize their experience and the headline format forces students to determine importance and choose their words wisely. How interesting that you seperated the girls and boys and the girls had an easier time. Did they get to talk through it? I wonder if the conversation in the two groups was different.