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Strategy #3: How can I extend my unit plans to respond to culture and language?

This strategy builds on the weekly overview you created for your content area unit or cross-content area unit to help you examine the extent to which your chosen activities address cultural and linguistic variations in your classroom. For each activity on your weekly overview, make notes about specific students' language or culture that need to be addressed when planning for the activity.

Weekly Overview for content area unit

Week # Objectives Activities Response to cultural/linguistic characteristics
1

[Word study objective]

[Comprehension objective]

Use pre-writing strategies.

Spell frequent words.

Reading: Read together Commander Toad and Tuesday. Choose a fantasy to read during silent reading. Response: Identify problem and solutions.

Writing: Use Wiesner books as places to start writing from. Talk about dreams and write.

Make words: Commander

The puns in Commander Toad will be especially difficult for Juan, Ali and Haojing to understand because puns require familiarity with Engish vocabulary to get the joke. We'll begin by talking about puns. Ask for some from the students so our class is using familiar words that we can illustrate for our ELLs. Write ideas on chart paper so everyone can see the words in writing. Then we'll read the stories and, in pairs, talk about what made them funny. Ask ELLs if they have puns in their language--if so, have them add to chart paper.

Since the pictures in Tuesday are critical to looking for clues, emphasize the use of drawings in ELLs' stories. This book centers on notions about time--find out what we can about the concept of time in Chinese, Mexican and Arabic cultures before this lesson and try to bring those ideas into the conversation.

2

[Word study objective]

[Comprehension objective]

Characters’ thoughts and motivations

Set a purpose, consider audience and replicate authors' styles.

Use pre-writing strategies.

Spell frequent words.

Reading: Van Allsburg Author Study. Read Two Bad Ants and Jumanji together. Read Mysteries of Harris Burdick aloud. Students must read two other Van Allsburg books during silent reading. Responses: write about characters. How do you know it’s a Van Allsburg? Make class list of Van Allsburg traits. Students must cite evidence.

Writing: Quick writes from pictures in Harris Burdick. Tell stories aloud to partners. Write scratch stories to develop ideas.

 

Many native speakers will be familiar with Jumanji since it has come out as a movie. Have children talk about their experiences with the movie and fill in others who have not seen it.

Have ALL students work in pairs with native speakers to identify what makes the book a Van Allsburg book, since these may be totally new to them.

Download this form for Content Area Unit Overview and form for Cross-Content Unit Overview: PDF version for printing...MS Word version for revising...RTF version for Revising