Literature of the U.S. Civil War
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OVERVIEW OF CONCEPTS AND GOALS:
In approaching this unit of study students will use various skills in listening and reading comprehension, problem solving, and critical thinking. These skills are tested on the Connecticut Mastery Tests. Strategies to facilitate learning will be through whole group, small group, and individual activities. The Unit starts out with whole group book talks led by me. This process will then move into the realm of half group size, then to small groups of four or five. In small groups there is a job for everyone which will be discussed later. In the beginning we read books together so that I can model expected rules for holding a book discussion and interesting ideas can be heard by all as well as my positive responses to student's reflections. When I move to smaller group variations, students have a more personal stake in the discussions: they get more chances to talk. I group students heterogeneous in ability so they learn to respect and appreciate each other's value. With the mix the students who views themselves as slow in reading will perhaps be appreciated for superior responses. The faster readers, on the other hand, might realize that in their haste they missed some key passages in the book. However, there is still room for the homogenous group concept. These are good for equal level projects and healthy competition. In the individual work each student realizes they are responsible for their work in their reading/writing journals and portfolios of work, which is evaluated on a scale 0-6, 0 representing no effort and 6 reflecting outstanding work.