Powerful Words - Word Meaning & Choice Teaching Guide

Teaching Guide

Recommended Text Set
Powerful Words

Skills

Primary Skills
Word Meaning & Choice

Secondary Skills
Central Idea, What the Text Says, Point of View/Purpose, People-Events & Ideas

Reading Behaviors

Nonfiction

  • Interpret words and phrases from how they are used in a text
  • Analyse how specific word choice shapes meaning and tone
  • Determine technical (denotative), connotative and figurative meanings of words from context
  • Solves and understands content specific words using graphics and tools from the text

Newsela Articles

This section is organized by nonfiction skills necessary for students to become strong readers. These articles can help you target student understanding for skill. We’ve included at least three articles for each subskill. We suggest that you use one for guided instruction, one for independent practice, and one for re-teaching.

Solving Words Maintaining Fluency Using Word Choice & Meaning to determine Central Idea & Summarize Using Word Choice & Meaning to Understand the Author’s Purpose

People use dictionaries to look up words they hear on the news

The winner of this Year’s Spelling Bee must know harder words than ever

Famous Speeches: President George W. Bush’s “Islam is Peace”


I Have a Dream Speech

No free speech for reporters, editors in China

Native Americans at Standing Rock want more fair treatment

Senator delivers 15-hour speech to lawmakers, demands vote on gun law

The New Colossus: Emma Lazarus’ 1883 poem for Lady Liberty

Famous Speeches: Ronald Reagan, “A Time for Choosing” 

Prize Winner Malala tells why she tries to make the world better with words

Primary Sources: Ernest Hemingway gets a letter from his WWI love

Famous Speeches: Cesar Chavez’s 1984 Address to the Commonwealth Club

 

Formative Tasks

The tasks provide teachers with relevant resources for classroom implementation. Teachers can use these activities and assessments to determine student learning.


PRO Teacher Resources & Lesson Plans

These resources are available right on the article.  They can be used whole class, small group, and as independent practice.

People use dictionaries to look up words they hear on the news
(Pre-reading: Which words are most popular?)

People use dictionaries to look up words they hear on the news
(Post-Reading: Being a lexicographer)

No Free Speech for Chinese Reporters.(Live Reporting Activity)

*Not yet in Article*

I Have a Dream Speech
(Carousel Rotation: What if Martin Luther King Jr. Was Alive Today?)

Native Americans at Standing Rock want more fair treatment
(Carousel Rotation: What are Assumptions & Project: Making Connections to Civil Rights)

The New Colossus: Emma Lazarus’ 1883 poem for Lady Liberty
(Powerful Words - Issue, Audience & Delivery)

The New Colossus: Emma Lazarus’ 1883 poem for Lady Liberty
(Poetry Writing: Writing a Sonnet)

Senator delivers 15-hour speech to lawmakers, demands vote on gun law
(Paired Writing: The Second Amendment in our own words) 

Primary Sources:  Ernest Hemingway gets a letter from his WWI love
(Author’s Purpose PIE)

* Not Yet in Article

Prize Winner Malala tells why she tries to make the world better with words
(Persuasive Writing:  Power of Taking a stand)


PRO Assign

These are the instructions you can use when you assign any of the articles above.

As you read the article, highlight words that you don’t understand in blue.  Then, using context clues and prior knowledge, write an annotation that attempts to define the word.

And/Or

As you read the article, highlight any “technical words,” the words that are specific to the topic of the article, you come across.


Choose a section of the article to read out loud.  When you come to word that trips you up, highlight it.  Afterwards, study the words you had trouble with. Reread the passage out loud and focus on reading it the way you talk.

Read the article and identify words and phrases that capture the main idea. Highlight these in blue. Then, write an annotation restating the main idea in your own words.

And/Or

Read the article and highlight the most important information required to summarize the central idea of this article. At the end of the article, write a one  sentence summary of the article. 

When an author chooses to quote someone in an article, good readers ask themselves: 3 questions:

- What is this person’s perspective?

- What are the qualifications of this person? Are they trustworthy, if so - why?

-Why did the author include this quote?

After reading this article, highlight one quote the author included.  Using this quote, answer the three questions by responding to the write prompt provided.


Recommended
Annotations

These annotations are available on the article page.  All you have to do is share them with your readers.

Famous Speeches: President George W. Bush’s “Islam is Peace”

I Have a Dream Speech

Native Americans at Standing Rock want more fair treatment

The New Colossus: Emma Lazarus’ 1883 poem for Lady Liberty 

Famous Speeches: Ronald Reagan, “A Time for Choosing”

 
Primary Sources: Ernest Hemingway gets a letter from his WWI love

Famous Speeches: Cesar Chavez’s 1984 Address to the Commonwealth Club


Annotations
for all
Articles

These annotations can be used in any of the articles above. These annotations could be added to any Newsela article that targets Word Meaning and Choice. 

What does the author mean when they write X?

Using context clues, what do you think [x word] means in this sentence?

What’s another word the author could have used instead of x?

Where else have you seen this word used?

Write a sentence where you use this word in a different way.

 
Describe the tone in this paragraph. What would a person look and sound like if they were speaking this paragraph out loud.

What words in this passage/article signal a(n):

- category
- cause or effect?
- comparison?
- conclusion?
- illustration or example?
- main idea?
- definition?


What key details support the central idea?

What is the central idea of this text/ section?

How does the author organize the details?

How did you find the key details?

What words help you understand the central idea?

Why did the author use this language?

Why did the author point this contrast/ contradiction? Does this reveal a bias or just new knowledge?


Why did the author choose to quote this person? How does this quote support the author’s opinion?


Assessments
& Binder

These can be used as formative assessment throughout.  

For summative assessment insights, go to your Binder and filter by the date range you assigned these articles. Reflect on the progress students have made in the skill.

Quiz
Students should take quizzes for all articles.

Write
Have students respond to at least one write prompt from the articles listed above.

Annotations
Respond to at least one annotation for each student. Be sure to give specific feedback.


Quiz
Students should take quizzes for all articles.

Write
Have students respond to at least one write prompt from the articles listed above.

Annotations
Respond to at least one annotation for each student. Be sure to give specific feedback.


Quiz
Students should take quizzes for all articles.

Write
Have students respond to at least one write prompt from the articles listed above.

Annotations
Respond to at least one annotation for each student. Be sure to give specific feedback. 


Quiz
Students should take quizzes for all articles.

Write
Have students respond to at least one write prompt from the articles listed above.

Annotations

Respond to at least one annotation for each student. Be sure to give specific feedback.

Powered by Zendesk