Embedded Reading

Simplify, Scaffold, Succeed!!

Student-created story from David: In Latin and in English

Here is a message and embedded reading from David Maust who teaches LATIN!!  He and several colleagues have found great success.  We’ll try to post more from them!  Thank you David for sharing this !

I had a lot of fun with this “bottom-up” embedded reading activity today. Wanted to share:

Today I tried an alternative to the regular “PQA-Ask the Story” routine. Instead I used Laurie Clarcq and Michelle Whaley’s “Bottom-Up Embedded Reading” format that they presented at NTPRS. It was very successful. The kids were very engaged for a whole block period (with a couple brain-breaks) and I got high reps on the structures. There was also not too much dead-time or English use that happens sometimes during the “Asking the Story” format because the details were already decided ahead of time (but still all chosen by the students).

I first gave the kids a short English story script the day before with blanks to fill in like a Matava or Tripp script. They did this on pieces of notebook paper. It took about 5 minutes. The story went like this:

_____ and ______made a trip to _______ because they wanted to ________. When they arrived, they said, “______!” They said that because _________. Then they began to ______.

The Key Structures were:

  • -iter fecerunt – made a trip
  • -cum pervenissent – when they arrived
  • -tum coeperunt – then they began…

I also ended up adding the structure convivari – to party, because that was in my final story I chose.

For the block period (100 minutes) I got:

  • 79 reps – iter fecerunt – made a trip
  • 67 reps- cum pervenissent – when they arrived
  • 78 reps – tum coeperunt – then they began…
  • 59 reps – convivari – to party

So after I got the suggestions from the kids, I reviewed them at home and put together a 3 location story script. Then I put each location into a powerpoint slide that would let me add in one sentence at a time.

I asked for the suggestions on Friday before Thanksgiving Break and presented the story on the Monday following the break. I presented it without any PQA; I just put up the first sentence, translated the new words, gave them the ASL signs, had them do the signs and started circling the sentence. It was great and comprehension was high. Then I did the same routine through the first location, taking about 45 min. to do this. I included actors about half-way through and we added a couple details just for fun, but I would actually not do the detail adding again – it was a little distracting. Just keeping to the script was plenty of input by itself.

I also added into my circling some of the other kids’ suggestions orally. This was a good way to use some of the material that didn’t make it into the official written story, but was still funny stuff and supported getting reps on the key structures.

After we had the first location well done and probably about 50 reps on each structure (I checked in with my rep counter), I had the actors sit down and we did a choral translation of the first location.

Then I went through the other two locations more quickly, but still pausing to circle and do comprehension and translation checks. Then we chorally translated each new location, but reading was faster since we had practiced the structures some already. Attention started to wane some on the last location, but this was understandable. Maybe next time I will save the other location(s) for the next day.

The kids gave me positive feedback at the end of the activity and I could tell it was a change of pace that helped hold attention. We’ve done about 5 scripted stories so far this year in addition to mini-stories at the beginning of the year and I felt like they needed a change of routine, especially on the first day back from Thanksgiving break.

Plus, I found that the energy that I needed to deliver in class was less in terms of trying to craft the story on the spot. This was nice for me, especially on the day back from vacation – just having a script there to follow that still had input that kids came up with. And if I did it again, I may only do one or two locations. I found that by the third location attention was starting to wane so it may be better to add in the third location on the following day in an embedded reading instead of doing them all in one day. For a non-block schedule, I think one could easily do one location in one day and still get great reps. I notice I loose a lot of time when you’re asking the story and deciding it, but with this model the asking was done the day before on paper and it only took about 5 min. (but took me about 45 min. at home to put the story together).

My plan for the rest of the week is to present one or two more versions of the base story as embedded readings with added details, titles, dialog, etc. The base story is below.

Laurie and Michelle! Thank you so much! I’m going to do this all the time! – David

STORY:

English version:

Luis and Steve made a trip to Sea World. Luis and Steve wanted to party with the ladies! When they arrived at Sea World, they said, “Woo-woo!” They said that because they saw a lot of ladies. Then Luis and Steve began to play Tactical-Monopoly-Supreme with the ladies.

The next day, Luis and Steve made a trip to Middle Earth. Luis and Steve wanted to party with the Hobbit ladies! When they arrived at Middle Earth, they said, “This is stupid!” They said that because they saw Gandalf bobble-heads. Then Luis and Steve began to play softball with the Hobbit ladies.

The next day, Luis and Steve made a trip to “Build-a-Bear Workshop” with the Hobbit ladies. The Hobbit Ladies said, “We like Build-a-Bear!” When they arrived at Build-a-Bear Workshop, they said, “O.M.G.!” They said that because they saw a stuffed panda with a jar of peanut butter.

Then Luis and Steve and the Hobbit ladies and the stuffed panda with a jar of peanut butter began to make a trip to Middle Earth because everybody wanted to party in Middle Earth.

Latin version:

Luis et Steve ad Sea World iter fecerunt. Luis et Steve cum feminis convivari volebant! cum ad Sea World pervenissent, dixerunt, “Woo-woo!” hoc dixerunt quod multas feminas viderunt! tum, Luis et Steve Tactical-Monopoly-Supreme cum feminis ludere coeperunt.

postridie, Luis et Steve ad Middle Earth iter fecerunt. Luis et Steve cum feminis Hobbitis convivari volebant!!! cum ad Middle Earth pervenissent, dixerunt, “HOC EST STUPIDUM!” hoc dixerunt quod Gandalf Bobble Heads viderunt. tum Luis et Steve cum feminis Hobbitis molipila ludere coeperunt.

postridie, Luis et Steve cum feminis Hobbitis ad Build-A-Bear Workshop iter fecerunt. feminae Hobbitae dixerunt, “Build-A-Bear nobis placet!” cum ad Build-A-Bear Workshop pervenissent, dixerunt, “O.M.G.!!!!” hoc dixerunt quod Stuffed-Panda-cum-Peanut-Butter-Jar viderunt. tum Luis et Steve, et feminae Hobbitae, et Stuffed-Panda-cum-Peanut-Butter-Jarad Middle Earth iter facere coeperunt quod omnes in Middle Earth convivari volebant!

I wanted to clarify one point – the above reading was only the base reading (with the three locations). I was trying to give the kids a format they were familiar with, and that is the typical stories we create from scripts in class, but I just wanted to make it in a different way. And I agree with some of your first impressions: it gave me a chance to use some great ideas from some of the shy kids who never volunteer in class, and it gave me the chance to intentionally use some info from kids who I wanted to engage in a special way by using THEIR details.

So, this was my base reading and then the next day I presented a second embedded reading which I’ve pasted below. When we read this in class I chose the following method:

1. first we read the base reading again and I circled and asked some comprehension and translation questions.

2. I had the kids hold their papers in front of them and said: “We are now going to have a experience much like you might in your English class with Silent Reading, but I am going to be helping you some. I am going to read a paragraph or two out loud and I want you to read silently along and try to create a movie in your heads of what I am reading. You will know most of the words, but there may be a few you don’t recognize. Don’t worry about this. Just keep reading and enjoy the story. After I read a paragraph or two, I will translate them in English. Most of you will not NEED the translation, but if there were any words you were unsure of, the translation will likely clear them up. Just enjoy the reading – I made this reading for you to give you a pleasurable reading experience in Latin, much like you would have when you read an English book.”

So that’s what we did with the second reading and as I read in Latin I noticed that kids actually laughed at appropriate times and seemed to enjoy it. When we were done I asked for some feedback and the kids said that the comprehended a lot and enjoyed it.

Some new elements I added were: title and subtitles, dialogue, Latinized names (the names were Anglicized in the first version, but the Latinized names give me the ability to more accurately inflect them according to how Latin grammar works).

Here’s the second reading below:

English Version:

Alovisius and Stephanus Make a Trip

The Trip to Sea World
One day, Stephanus and Alovisius were in Frances’s Bar. Alovisius said to Stephanus, “Stephanus, it pleases me to make a trip to Sea World. Does this please you?” Stephanus said to Alovisius, “Alovisius, why do you want to make a trip to Sea World? Do you want to see Shamu?” Alovisius said, “No way! Shamu is stupid! It pleases me to party with the ladies in Sea World!” Stephanus said, “Me too!”

And… Alovisius and Stephanus made a trip to Sea World because they wanted to party with the ladies. When they arrived at Sea World they said “Woo-woo!” They said this because the saw a lot of ladies. The ladies were really beautiful and were playing Tactical-Monopoly-Supreme.

“Hello ladies!” said Alovisius and Stephanus. “Hi Alovisius and Stephanus!!! Tee-hee-hee-hee-hee!” said the ladies. Does it please you to play Tactical-Monopoly-Supreme? It’s the best!”

Then, Alovisius and Stephanus began to play Tactical-Monopoly-Supreme with the ladies. They played Tactical-Monopoly-Supreme for seven hours.

The Trip to Middle Earth
The next day, Stephanus said to Alovisius, “It was pleasing to me to party with the ladies in Sea World, but today it pleases me to party with the Hobbit Ladies in Middle Earth!” Alovisius said, “Me too!”

and… Alovisus and Stephanus made a trip to Middle Earth because they wanted to party with the Hobbit ladies. When they arrived at Middle Earth they said, “THIS IS STUPID!” They said this because they saw Gandalf-Bobble-Heads.

The Hobbit Ladies said to Alovisius and Stephanus, “Hello Alovisius and Stephanus!!! Tee-hee-hee-hee-hee! Does it please you to play softball? It’s the best!”

The Gandalf Bobble Heads said to Alovisius and Stephanus, “Bobble-bobble-bobble!” Alovisius and Stephanus said, “STUPID!”

Then Alovisius and Stephanus played softball with the Hobbit Ladies. They played softball for seventy seven hours.

The Trip to Build a Bear
The next day, Alovisius et Stephanus made a trip with the Hobbit Ladies to Build a Bear Workshop. The Hobbit Ladies said, “Build a Bear is the BEST!” When they arrived they said “O.M.G.!” They said this because they saw a Stuffed-Panda-with-a-Peanut-Butter-Jar. The Stuffed-Panda-with-a-Peanut-Butter-Jar was gigantic.

Stuffed-Panda-with-a-Peanut-Butter-Jar said, IT PLEASES ME IN MIDDLE EARTH TO PARTY!!! I WANT TO MAKE A TRIP TO MIDDLE EARTH!!!”

Everyone was afraid of Stuffed-Panda-with-a-Peanut-Butter-Jar. But… Stephaus was brave. Stephanus said, “Stuffed-Panda-with-a-Peanut-Butter-Jar, you may make a trip to Middle Earh. Come with us to Middle Earth!”

Then everyone said, “Hooray!” Everyone was happy.

Then Alovisius and Stephanus and the Hobbit Ladies, and Stuffed-Panda-with-a-Peanut-Butter-Jar made a trip to Middle Earth because everybody wanted to party! In Middle Earth they partied and played Tactical-Monopoly-Supreme for seven hundred seventy seven hours!

Latin Version:

ALOVISIUS ET STEPHANUS ITER FACIUNT
iter ad Sea World
uno die, Stephanus et Alovisius in taberna Francescae erant. Alovisius Stephano dixit, “Stephane, mihi placet ad Sea World iter facere! placetne tibi?” Stephanus Alovisio dixit, “Alovisi, quare tibi ad Sea World iter facere placet? tu vis Shamu videre?” Alovisius dixit, “MINIME! Shamu est stupidus! mihi placet in Sea World cum feminis CONVIVARI!!!” Stephanus dixit, “ego quoque!!!”

et… Alovisius et Stephanus ad Sea World iter fecerunt quod cum feminis convivari volebant! cum ad Sea World pervenissent, dixerunt, “Woo-woo!” hoc dixerunt quod multas feminas viderunt! feminae erant pulcherrimae et Tactical-Monopoly-Supreme ludebant.

“salvete feminae!” dixerunt Alovisius et Stephanus. “avete Alovisi et Stephane!!! Tee-hee-hee-hee-hee!” dixerunt feminae. “placetne vobis Tactical-Monopoly-Supreme ludere? est OPTIMUM!”

tum, Alovisius et Stephanus Tactical-Monopoly-Supreme cum feminis ludere coeperunt. Tactical-Monopoly-Supreme septem horas ludebant!

iter ad Middle Earth
postridie, Stephanus Alovisio dxit, “mihi placebat in Sea World cum feminis convivari, sed hodie mihi placet in Middle Earth cum feminis Hobbitis convivari!!!” Alovisius dixit, “EGO QUOQUE!!!”

et… Alovisius et Stephanus ad Middle Earth iter fecerunt quod cum feminis Hobbitis convivari volebant!!! cum ad Middle Earth pervenissent, dixerunt, “HOC EST STUPIDUM!” hoc dixerunt quod Gandalf-Bobble-Heads viderunt.

feminae Hobbitae Alovisio et Stephano dixerunt, “salvete Alovisi et Stephane!!! Tee-hee-hee-hee-hee! placetne vobis MOLIPILA ludere? est OPTIMUM!”

Gandalf-Bobble-Heads Alovisio et Stephano dixerunt, “BOBBLE-BOBBLE-BOBBLE!” Alovisius et Stepanus, “STUPIDUM!!!” dixerunt.

tum Alovisius et Stephanus cum feminis Hobbitis molipila ludere coeperunt. molipila septuaginta sepetem horas ludebant.

iter ad Build-a-Bear
postridie, Alovisius et Stephanus cum feminis Hobbitis ad Build-A-Bear Workshop iter fecerunt. feminae Hobbitae dixerunt, “Build-A-Bear est OPTIMUM!” cum ad Build-A-Bear Workshop pervenissent, omnes dixerunt, “O.M.G.!!!!” hoc dixerunt quod Stuffed-Panda-with-a-Peanut-Butter-Jar viderunt! Stuffed-Panda-with-a-Peanut-Butter-Jar erat MAXIMUM!

Stuffed-Panda-with-a-Peanut-Butter-Jar dixit, “MIHI PLACET IN MIDDLE EARTH CONVIVARI!!! ITER AD MIDDLE EARTH FACERE VOLO!!!”

omnes Stuffed-Panda-with-a-Peanut-Butter-Jar timebant. sed… Stephanus fortis erat. Stephanus dixit, “Stuffed-Panda-with-a-Peanut-Butter-Jar, licet tibi ad Middle Earth iter facere. veni ad Middle Earth!”

tum omnes dixerunt, “EUGE!!!!!!!!!!” omnes laeti erant.

tum Alovisius et Stephanus, et feminae Hobbitae, et Stuffed-Panda-with-a-Peanut-Butter-Jar ad Middle Earth iter facere coeperunt quod omnes in Middle Earth convivari volebant! in Middle Earth convivabantur et Tactical-Monopoly-Supreme septingenti septuaginta septem horas ludebant!

 

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