Hello, Friends! We hope you are enjoying the long weekend (for some of us, anyways) and are excited as we are about all of the wonderful ideas we have been reading about this past week! We are incredibly grateful to be part of this dynamite group of literacy gurus!
We are Colleen and Stacy from The Rungs of Reading. After teaching special education for 13 years, I (Stacy) moved into the role of Elementary Reading Specialist at my K-5 school. I have been teaching reading for five years and absolutely LOVE my job! Colleen is working hard as a first-year second grade teacher after finishing her undergraduate degree in early elementary with a Master's in Reading. The idea for our little blog began when Colleen was completing her reading practicum in my classroom. She quickly introduced me to the world of teaching blogs, and I was hooked!
Today we are going to share one of our favorite comprehension strategies that we use in our classrooms called "Reading and Analyzing Nonfiction Text" or RAN, for short.
Now that the Common Core State Standards stress an equal balance of literature and informational text in the classroom, we have spent a considerable amount of time building our nonfiction libraries and revamping our lessons to include more informational text strategies. RAN has proven to be an effective strategy to use with informational text as it encompasses both before, during, and after reading activities. In addition, it requires students to use a variety of strategies including activating schema, confirming thinking, and asking questions. Finally, this strategy can be done with teacher support in a whole-class or small group setting or independently while using a graphic organizer.
When using the RAN strategy, students begin by brainstorming what they think they know about a topic. These ideas are written on individual post-its and placed in the first column of the chart or graphic organizer. Here is an example of a RAN chart after brainstorming what my second grade students knew about the topic "climate". I recorded their ideas and placed the post-its on the chart.
After brainstorming, students read the text for the first time. When they find a confirmation in the text, that post-it is transferred into the second column of the chart or graphic organizer. Here is our RAN chart after some initial thoughts were confirmed. Notice that some of our ideas are missing!
After the first reading, students review the chart and attend to any misconceptions they might have had about the content. These ideas are transferred to the fourth column of chart or graphic organizer. At this time, students can revise their thinking and add their ideas to the "new learning" column of the chart or graphic organizer.
Finally, the strategy concludes by reading the text a second time then thinking about what questions the students still have about the content. This is a perfect time to explain that sometimes our questions are not answered when reading a text and we have to do additional research to find answers.
We hope you enjoyed reading about one of our favorite strategies to use when teaching informational text. Here is a little FREEBIE to help you out when using the RAN strategy!