S.O.S: Journals

Welcome to  Spotlight on Strategies Challenge!  Our S.O.S series  provides help, tips, and tricks for integrating DE media into your curriculum.

Journals
PDF Version

Background
Carol Ann Tomlinson shared,  “There is ample evidence that students are more successful in school and find it more satisfying if they are taught in ways that are responsive to their readiness levels (e.g., Vygotsky, 1986), interests (e.g., Csikszentmihalyi, 1997) and learning profiles (e.g., Sternberg, Torff, & Grigorenko, 1998).”  Creating activities that demonstrate one or more of these activities can be challenging, but when found are rewarding for the educator and student.

Example

  • Explain to students that today you will be watching a video segment about muscles.  Though they are not to take notes during this short segment, they will be asked to draw 1 picture and describe in a few sentences something they learned.
  • Begin playing the video segment Muscles: Superhuman Strength at 2:20 and stop at 5:00.  (You may chose to pause the segment midway through and ask some prompting questions)
  • After students have finished watching segment, have them pull out a blank sheet of paper or composition notebook.  On the left hand side of the page, they will draw a picture representing something they learned and include labels.  On the right hand side they should write a few sentences describing their picture or additional facts from the segment.
  • Have students spend 2 minutes sharing their drawing and what they learned.
  • Collect journal pages and provide feedback to students.

Challenge

  • Select a reading passage, audio file, or video segment that matches your current unit.
  • Explain to students that they will be drawing a picture and summarizing their learning in a few sentences following their reading, listening, or watching.
  • This activity allows for students with lower academic vocabulary development to write a few words, while more advanced students may choose to add a few sentences.
  • Have students pair share with a neighbor to discuss their drawing and summary/facts.
  • Collect journal pages and provide feedback to students

You can take the challenge by:

  • Implementing this strategy and letting us know how it went by posting a comment below.
  • Using this strategies in your grade level planning discussions and/or professional development and reporting your events. (Remember we consider an event anytime 3 or more educators gather together… doesn’t have to be in a computer lab… could be sitting around the lunch table)
  • Photocopying the flier and distributing it in your colleague’s boxes and/or posting it to your own BulleDEN board.

So see other strategies in this series click here.  For a link to all the PDFs in this series click here.

Comments

  1. sheryl Robert

    I do this with de clips. I sometimes will show a clip without sound, have students write in the left column, repeat with sound. It helps them pay more attention to details.

  2. Tracie Belt

    Great article, Jannita. i agree that journaling is a great way for students to process language and thinking. Processing is what helps our students make sense of what they are learning and connect it to prior learning. Drawing pictures also help students clarify their thinking. Thanks for sharing this strategy. I really enjoy S.O.S. thanks for keeping us up to date on some wonderful learning strategies.

  3. Jannita

    Thanks for sharing your feedback! Sheryl, that is a great idea with the silent videos! Tracie, glad to know you’re enjoying them! Everyone, keep sharing your thoughts!

  4. David Doughton

    This is a great idea. It allows students to use both sides of their brain for writing and creative drawing. Some students that struggle with producing strong sentences can benefit with using pictures for their explanations. It’s something to consider, especially for struggling students.

  5. Jannita

    Thanks for sharing David! Be sure to check out more!

  6. FRANCES SNYYDER

    I love this and highly recommend this strategy. Just read this article, but did this very thing with my students as young as kindergarten. It was very effective and the students went on to write summaries that were shared with my boss.

  7. FRANCES SNYYDER

    I love this and highly recommend this strategy. I did just read this article, but did this very thing with my students as young as kindergarten. It was very effective and the students went on to write summaries that were shared with my boss.

Continuing the Discussion

Leave a Comment

For your photo to appear next to your name, be sure you have a Gravatar.com account created matching your email address.