On this page, I'm demonstrating how I would model "Reading is Thinking" with an upper junior or intermediate class. I will be using Teresa Toten's book from the Seven Secrets series, 'Shattered Glass'. This would be a read aloud and students would be responsible for keeping track of their thinking as we read using sticky notes and their reading response journals. I would stop and explain my thinking at different parts of the read aloud. Whenever I stop I would put a few jots on a sticky and put it in the place where I stopped.
I would begin with a prediction, having never read this book, read other books from the series or even another book by this author. Predicting is something we do automatically when we contemplate reading a story. It helps us determine whether we think we'll enjoy the book or find it appealing in any way. A prediction is made after looking carefully at the cover, the blurb on the back, author information and after reading the 1st page.
Mrs D's Prediction
(to be written on class blog, but especially on chart paper and displayed where the class can always refer to what a prediction looks like)
Toni is dreaming about fire because I believe she was injured in a fire probably set (accidentally) by her mother. The title 'Shattered Glass' makes me think about broken windows in the fire but her shattered life. Hers is a life that she has to piece together. The LP on the cover speaks to the time period and the importance that music plays in the story. It's 1964, Twist n' Shout is the name of the first chapter. Toni is a typical teen of the 60's, a music lover. Music is her escape, a way for her to forget her situation. Betty was her best friend at the orphanage, the only one who has ever shown love to her? Maybe there will be a love interest in the story? These are the things I think this novel will be about.
Reading Response #1 - Sept. 17, 2015
(I would do 1 response a week and have it displayed in the class as well. Students are required to write about their reading on a daily basis, but need to hand in one reading response a week to be read by me)
This first part of the book we learn that Toni finds a place to stay and a job. She will be working at a coffee house that hosts music acts. I really hope Ian Tyson does NOT turn out to be her father! I feel like it's too early in the book for her to find her dad, but I hate it when stories end too perfectly! I believe her past does have something to do with this music scene in which she has been immersed. I love her apartment and the character of Mrs. Grady. Toni needs someone to show her the ropes and erase some of the naivete! I have always dreamed of living in a big city and a having an apartment like the one described in this part of the novel. This so far reminds me of books that I have read about young people trying to make their way in a city. It's usually NYC so it's nice that this is about Canada and Toronto is the big city! I can picture Yorkville in this time period. Maybe Big Bob is her dad...
Reading Response #2 - Sept. 18, 2015
(again, written on blog and on chart paper for students to read and refer to)
I'm really surprised to read the mature content of this part of the novel. I guess it's nothing that most of you have not already seen in movies or tv shows. This book reads to me like an adult novel however. We are starting to learn more about Mrs. Grady's drinking problem. And I'm also starting to think that Toni is a dreamer! Very naive and quick to jump to conclusions. She is desperate to find her father but she is quick to think anyone is her dad. I like the character of Ethan. I think he likes Toni and that's why he gives her such a hard time. Toni is too naive to notice. She has been sheltered from the world in the orphanage. I think about Annie and Anne of Green Gables which have been mentioned in the novel so far. Kids living in conditions like these characters do not have the life experiences like those who have been raised through other means. Back to Mrs. Grady though, she is a main character who emerging importance makes me think she is more important to the story than just as a support and leader for Toni. She has an interesting past and I would have to predict that she is either Toni's mom or knows critical information about her mother. Could I be right???
Reading Response #3 Oct. 8, 2015
I took a hiatus from the book due in part because Teresa Toten came to speak to our school about her books and writing in general! A great visit! See my separate blog about her inspiring talk!
I was so worried for Toni when she is upset after learning about the ship the Noronic! She is so vulnerable! I remember feeling like no one cared for me and was out of my element without my friends and family around me - the people who know me best. One time was when I was a little younger than Toni and I went away to work for the summer. I had to make friends with people who knew nothing about me. It is a hard thing to do. Think about a time when you have been surrounded by people who don't know you and you have to start from the very beginning and make them see who you are. I think it's important that people put themselves in situations like Toni is finding herself. It teaches you a lot about who you are at your very core. This happened again to me when I went away to University. Talk about feeling alone! I still remember that dark ache the first night I was in residence, sitting in a huge hall, on the floor, surrounded by strangers. I remember thinking to myself that my life would never be the same again. So dramatic! But I was right. It was never the same again and it turned out just fine! Another experience I had was when I went traveling in Europe with a group of strangers. A great experience, but man! did I learn about myself on that trip! This is how I believe Toni is feeling all the time. She yearns for the comfort of being surrounded by those who know and love her but she hasn't found it yet. I think Toni needs to know the truth about her past before she is going to feel at ease in her new life. One word of advice for Toni at this part of the book (from a somewhat older and wiser female) DON'T TRUST CASSIDY! Can you say bad news? He is totally taking advantage of her trust and innocence. Dodgy Dave gives her the best advice: "not everything pretty and shiny is what it appears to be". Hopefully she listens to this advice.
Reading Response #4 Oct. 13, 2015
End of the book!
Total ick-fest alert! That awful party! You just KNEW something bad was going to happen and that Cassidy was bad news. I thankfully have never been in a situation like this, but what a great opportunity for young girls and boys to discuss what happens when you are in a situation that you know is wrong and you need to get OUT! A tough life lesson for Toni and I'm glad she was so lucky to have such a good friend in Ethan. Ethan, ah, one prediction where I was correct! Great kissing scene - sorry to those YA readers who aren't ready to read a great romantic scene! I KNEW he was crazy for her. Reminds me of many good love stories I've read in the past. The English Patient (the best ever in my opinion), Anne of Green Gables, Some Kind of Wonderful (true confession - only saw the movie)... the list goes on and on. Girl meets boy, she doesn't realize he's bad news, he's a jerk to her and nice boy is there to pick up the pieces. Or how about this; girl meets boy, boy is mean to girl because boy is really nuts for her and doesn't know how to appropriately show his affection? Yep that's it - Textbook romance storyline :) I have to say, I started to predict the circumstance in which Toni as a little girl was scarred and left an orphan. This part was not a surprise for me, but it made for a good ending. I was glad that she got her answers and that she had been wrong about her mother. A good ending to a good book. Can't wait to read the rest of the series!