The Spotlight On Strategies series (CDN subscribers) is one of Discovery Education’s most popular resources. First introduced 2012, these strategies help teachers use media in effective and engaging ways in their classrooms.
The best part about the SOS is that they are flexible and can be used across grade levels and content areas. We are excited for SOS Story: a new SOS series that spotlights teachers showing how they put the SOS to work in their classrooms.
Name: Francie Snyder
District: District: Manatee County, Florida
Role: K-5 Educator of the Gifted
Francie’s SOS Story
The SOS page has become one of my first places to go to when lesson planning. It has been my experience that, by themselves, each SOS is powerful, but can be even more powerful when combined or “mashed” together.
One recent example of successful SOS mashing involves intentional scaffolding that I did to help guide my students to think deeper about the topic we were discussing: Veterans’ Day. I used the Discovery Education video segment Observing the Holiday, which is about four minutes long. Then, I combined SOS strategies Silence is Golden, See-Think-Wonder, and Quick Writes to help them deepen their understanding of this significant holiday.
Before students watched the video segment, I had them set up a graphic organizer for the See-Think-Wonder strategy. They divided a piece of paper into three columns and labeled them.
Next, I used the Silence is Golden strategy and played the video for students without sound, pausing the video every 30 seconds to one minute. During the pause, I asked students to only write down what they saw or observed in the video. They recorded these things in the SEE column of their paper. I stressed to my students that at this point they were to only write down things they observed. This forced them to pay very close attention to what was happening on the screen, which included details that could be easily missed without careful observation.
Students then re-watched the video a second time, again with no sound. Each time the I paused the video, I asked students to record what they were thinking about in the center section of their paper. We discussed what we saw and how that affected what we thought. I encouraged students to explain why they might have those thoughts. Many times their response included, “It reminded me of …” I helped them realize that they were using the skill of inferring and I encouraged them to continue making connections to prior knowledge to make sense of the new information they were gaining from the media. Before playing the next section of the video, I made sure students recorded things about that section they were wondering about or had questions about.
After the finishing the second viewing of the video I asked students to participate in a Quick Write variation. They used their See-Think-Wonder notes to write what they thought this video was about. The final step was to watch the same video with sound to check for accuracy.
A bonus extension of this could be to ask students to listen for information that helped them answer the questions they listed in the Wonder column of their See-Think-Wonder paper. They could then share their new insights with partners or in small groups.