DRAFT: This module has unpublished changes.


Instruction Commentary

Task 2: Instructing and Engaging Students in Literacy Learning


1. which lesson or lessons are shown in the video clips? identify the lesson(s) by lesson plan number.

The lesson shown in the video clips is Literacy Lesson # 2


2.      Promoting a Positive Learning Environment

In response to the prompt, refer to scenes in the video clips where you provided a positive learning environment

  • How did you demonstrate mutual respect for, rapport with and responsiveness to students with varied needs and backgrounds, and challenge students to engage in learning?

The scene with the launching of the lesson clearly demonstrates mutual respect for rapport and responsiveness to students with varied needs and background.  Using the strategy of turn and talk with a partner (i.e sharing their predictions) lends itself to establishing a rapport with student to student. Asking students to share aloud their prediction of what they think is inside the mystery box is a demonstration of students’ responding to question asks by teacher.

Using the pictograph/bar graph showing the average temperature of a week as an instructional tool to teach prediction challenged the students to become actively engaged in learning.  The pictograph/ bar graph serves as a visual aid for those students who are visual learners.  It also appeals to the students who are mathematically inclined to identify a pattern that will help in solving the problem of predicting what the weather would be like on Saturday.


3.      Engaging Students in Learning

Refer to examples from the video clips in your responses to the prompts.

a.  Explain how your instruction engaged students in developing an essential literacy strategy and requisite skills.

 Laying the foundation by defining the new vocabulary word prediction and letting students know that when you predict you make a movie in your mind of what you think will happen next in the story based upon the character’s action. This is a strategy that is not taught in isolation. It is also taught with other strategies such as envisioning and inference.  Making predictions is a strategy that can be applied to other reading materials such as the heading/ title of a newspaper and across the various subject areas. For example in the video this application is shown by having students predict the temperate for Saturday using a mathematical approach. Students solve the problem by identifying a pattern in the rise of temperature for each new day and then they use that pattern to predict for the final day of the week.


b. Describe how your instruction linked students’ prior academic learning and personal, cultural, and community assets with new learning.

 Prior to this lesson students’ were taught the comprehension strategy of visualizing (make a movie in your mind). Students know that weather forecasters use temperature to predict the daily weather. The temperature influences the type of clothing worn on each day. So having students predict what the temperature will be like on Saturday linked their prior academic learning and personal and cultural and community assets with new learning. The instruction is linked to prior knowledge and new learning because they are able to link the same process of making a movie in their mind for visualizing with doing the same for making predictions.


4.      Deepening Students learning during Instruction

Refer to examples from the video clips in your explanations.

 a.  Explain how you elicited and built on student responses to promote thinking and apply the literacy strategy using requisite skills to comprehend or compose text.

After the read aloud of the specific text (Missing Files) I pause and ask the class to write a prediction. In the previous lesson we discuss about making a movie in in your mind and think about not only what the character will do but how.  Students were prompted to draw on their personal knowledge of similar experiences to anticipate the upcoming text. During this exercise I was able to elicit the vocabulary word consequences for one student before previewing the word on the vocabulary chart.


 b.  Explained how you modeled the literacy strategy in a meaning-based context.      

 The academic language function – making prediction is the central focus of the learning segment. Modeling this strategy in a meaning based context took the form of a mystery box and asks students to think about what is inside the box. Students based their predictions of the content of the box on their knowledge and experience of what a similar size and design box (as the one shown) may contain.  Another example of meaning based context is the use of a bar graph, having students analyzing the graph to make a prediction during the mini lesson.


5.      Analyzing Teaching


Refer to examples from the video clips in your explanations.


What changes would you make to your instruction –for the whole class and/or for students who need greater support or challenge—to better support student learning of the central focus (e.g., missed opportunities)?


Modification will be made for both students who need greater support and for those who are high achievers who need a challenge. For the students who need greater support in addition to doing a picture walk as in lesson one I will do a picture puzzle where students rearrange the pictures of a story in the correct sequence and then predict what the story is all about. I will also use the strategy of questioning to get students to think. For example -Your friend invite you to the movie Gorilla, what do you expect to see in the movie? Then read the specific chapter of the main text which is Charlotte’s Web. Next I will model (by writing on a blank graphic organizer) how to complete the making prediction graphic organizer for students to follow suite. The graphic organizer will also be used for summative assessment.



Consider the variety of learners in your class who may require different strategies/support, such as students with IEPs, English language learners, struggling readers, underperforming students or those with gaps in academic knowledge, and/or gifted students.


b.      Why do you think these changes would improve student learning? Support your explanation with evidence of student learning and principles from theory and/or research.

Struggling readers and those with a learning disability needs visuals and some may even need hands on material to help them grasps or understand the concept.


Visual Images – Struggling readers


Richard Sinatra and his colleagues show how teachers can facilitate better comprehension of all learners by helping students to create visual images.  The recommended strategy support the learners the learners active engagement in the construction of meaning.  The intent of using these strategies is to get students engaged, and improve their clear understanding of the new vocabulary.


Continuing to use graphic organizers to teach the learning function –making prediction is one that is supported by both teachers and researchers. Teachers can use a variety of instruction tools such as graphic organizers to facilitate the process of teaching comprehension strategies which should be taught explicitly and assessed for understanding (Gorleski, 2009). “Rather, opportunities to engage learner in writing reinforce understandings needed for reading (Clay, 1975).  And writing activities that occur in relation to specific readings contribute to learner engagement and enhanced comprehension” (Tierney and Shanahan 1991).

questions are the master key to understanding.  Questions propel us forward and take us deeper into reading.



Ormrod, J.,(2011); Educational psychology – Developing learners: Pearson Education Inc., Boston MA02116

Strickland, D., Ganske, K., and Monroe, K., (2002); Supporting struggling readers and writers; Portland ME; Stenhouse

DRAFT: This module has unpublished changes.