Tag Archive for nonfiction article

…but some animals are more equal than others.


  • ELAGSE9-10RI2 Determine a central idea of a text and analyze its development over the course of the text, including how it emerges and is shaped and refined by specific details; provide an objective summary of the text.

Learning Target: I will read an article examining false confessions and analyze the central idea of that text, and then continue reading Animal Farm.

Opening Session: 60 second recap!

Work Session: Welcome back! Today we’re going to continue Animal Farm, but first, we’re going to revisit what we discussed yesterday – why do innocent people confess to crimes they didn’t commit, knowing the punishment is death? We’re gonna read an article from the New York Times about this – Why Do Innocent People Confess? and we’re going to do a bit of margin marking on this. Here’s what you do:

  • Put a * next to anything you think would be worth discussing with the class. (3)
  • Put a ? next to anything that confuses you or that you have questions about. (2)
  • Put a ! next to any statement with which you strongly agree. (1)
  • Put a X next to any statement with which you strongly disagree.(1)

We are also going to be annotating the text. This means we’re going to be marking all over it while we read, which I’ll do on the document camera while you guys do it on your papers!

If you’re following along from home, here’s a printable version of the article: Why do innocent people confess?

After we finish that, we’re going to continue with Animal Farm with a partner reading strategy. I’m giving everyone a sticky note and you’ll be putting it next to interesting things in the book. Then we’ll do a timed-by-page strategy for chapter 9. Our goal is to get through chapter 9 today, but we’ll see how far we get after discussing our article.

Closing Session: And at the end of the day we have a little ticket out the door of course 🙂 Let’s make this one a 3-2-1. 3 things you’ve learned, 2 things you’re questioning, and 1 thing you found surprising.

Assessment: Formative – margin marking article; ticket out the door

Differentiation: Process – high level readers can read independently, highlighters given as needed.


Standard: RL.9-10.10. By the end of grade 9, read and comprehend literature, including stories, dramas, and poems, in the grades 9–10 text complexity band proficiently, with scaffolding as needed at the high end of the range.

Learning Target: Students will read an encyclopedia entry on monsters and begin their anchor text for this unit, Kafka’s “Metamorphosis”.

Activator: The Metamorphosis – Part I

Today we’re going to start reading our Big Reading for this unit, but FIRST we’re continuing with our nonfiction reading. Whoohoo! We’re starting off with an entry in the Myth Encyclopedia that’s appropriately titled “Monsters.” With a partner, I want you to read the article I give you, in any way you choose (you may read silently then discuss, alternate paragraphs reading aloud, have one person read aloud to the other, whatever you like). After you’ve finished reading the article, consider the definitions you wrote yesterday and work together to revise your definitions into a new one.

Your end product should be a 2-3 sentence concise definition that accurately explains what it means to be a monster. Yes, I’m grading it this time.

After we finish with this article, we’re going to start reading our Big Reading for this unit. This is a story entitled “The Metamorphosis” by Franz Kafka. We watched a summary video of it at the beginning of class, but for simplicity’s sake let me give you a two-word run down of this story. It is 1.) Long and 2.) Complicated.

Excited yet? We’re going to read aloud today, popcorn style, the first half of Part I of the story. That’s page 1066-1072 in our book, stopping at the end of the first paragraph on 1072. If you’re reading online, you’re reading to the sentence “his sister began to cry.”

This is a VERY hard text, guys. So we’re going to run through it very slowly and carefully and do a lot of checks for understanding. We will finish part 1 this week, and when we return from spring break we’ll do a little review before we dive right into reading part 2 :)