Sunday, July 12, 2015

What are Think Sheets???

What are Think Sheets and why would you need them in your classroom? Let me tell you!

Do you ever look around your room at the students who are supposed to be reading and see them staring off into space instead of actually reading their text? You know what I mean, the nose-pickers, the ones playing with their shoelaces. Those guys. 

I had plenty of them and it drove me NUTS! My kiddos were more interested in the weather outside than what was in the book in front of their face.

I realized that I couldn't expect my students to really engage with their text unless I gave them a purpose for reading. Enter think sheets!

Think sheets were designed to track student learning as they read. They give students an opportunity to document their thinking as they are reading. I love using think sheets in the classroom during a group read aloud, guided reading, or even giving them to students to use independently.

We often start a new inquiry unit by making a KWL and a read aloud about our new subject. Students can use their think sheets during the read aloud, and write down questions about the new topic or new things they have learned. 

One of my favorite things to see students write on their think sheets are answers to questions we had come up with during guided reading or on our class KWL. My kids are always so excited to show me when they have found an answer to one of our questions!!

I could go on and on about think sheets forever, but first let me show you how they work!

I copy my think sheets back to back so that students have at least seven boxes to document their learning. I don't ask them to fill out every single box but I do hope that they will!

Next we fill out the information at the top of the think sheet. Name, Title of the Text, and the Author. Make sure your students write this down so that you know what text they are referring to!!

Now we start reading!! As we read through the book, I always open my guided reading groups for discussion. If a student is reading about snakes and tells me that she thinks what she just read is "so cool!" I tell her to add it to her think sheet! Gradually, my students become so accustomed to using their think sheets in guided reading or during our whole group read aloud that they want to use them on their own when they are reading. Take a look at some of the learning we found in this reptile book!

I always make sure to ask my kiddos to write down their page number so that I can tell where they found the information they are writing about on their think sheet. I have provided a spot for them to do this on the think sheets!

You're probably wondering what those letters in those little boxes mean. Those are our text codes. We always start the year with a lesson on how to use our text codes. Each letter stands for a way to track their thinking! Here are some examples:

NL = New Learning

V = New Vocabulary Word

C = Connection

Inside this pack you will learn all about the different text codes and see how to use them in your classroom. I like to print my text codes out on bookmark size paper (template provided in the packet) and give them to my students to use while they are reading. There are tons of text codes in my think sheet packet and you can check it out here!

Feel free to comment with any questions and I hope you find think sheets as helpful in your classroom as they were in mine!!

In the meantime, grab your own copy by clicking the picture below!

Hope you had a great weekend!

No comments:

Post a Comment