The trials, tribulations and adventures of being a new Principal

Archive for the month “September, 2016”

Showing Vs. Telling

I’ve been popping in and out of different classrooms to catch mini lessons and reading groups in action.  One of the things I am noticing is the difference between showing and telling. Another thing I am noticing is differences in gradual release of responsibility.

Telling is sharing a strategy and/or an anchor chart and expecting students to practice the skill.
Showing is sharing a strategy using an anchor chart AND text.  Showing is modeling the strategy using mentor text so that the strategy is concrete for students to see.
Gradual release of responsibility takes Showing to a whole new level.  The teacher models with text,  students practice with similar text and THEN students try the strategy independently so the teacher can assess their understanding.  This may take several mini lessons and/or small group work to accomplish.
Which of these practices are most effective? Chances are that you already know that the greatest outcome occurs through showing and gradual release,  BUT you may be wondering how to connect mentor texts and strategies.  
Jennifer Serravallo’s book on reading strategies can be found at her blog:
This blog could also be helpful:  
I am planning on giving lots of feedback on this in the next couple weeks.  Let me know if you want or need more information.

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