Sunday, September 25, 2011

Textmapping

Before I begin. . .  what a long week it was!  Sorry for the lack of posts this week.  I have been swimming in work and haven't had a moment to post anything.  In the past week, I have created and/or significantly revised 48 different literacy center activities, eight activities in six different literacy areas.  That means thinking of what I need them to be, then typing them up, putting them in folders, and listing all the extra materials and copies I need to gather in school to complete the centers. Of course, the type A in me also had to search Google for 48 different clip art images to make each one fun.  Creating these center activities also meant making and gluing 48 center names on 48 folders.  So, that's what I have been doing with my nights this week in addition to the regular classroom planning and grading. This job can be so consuming at times!  If you teach you know exactly what I'm talking about!

I'm posting today about an instructional technique I used in class this week with great success.  During the week, I will also be posting a few quick posts on some anchor charts my friends and I have created along with a couple of organizing tips.  But, on to today's topic. . .

Have you tried TEXTMAPPING? 

Here's some background info from The Textmapping Project explaining exactly what it is:
 (If you click on the the link above, it will take you to their site, which has a wealth of information.)

Overview of Textmapping

Bullet point Textmapping is a graphic organizer technique that can be used to teach reading comprehension and writing skills, study skills, and course content. It is practiced on scrolls , which are an alternative environment to books. Textmapping and scrolls can be used strategically, but they are not strategies. They are enabling technologies - simple, basic tools which can be used for reading and classroom instruction. The same strategies that can be taught in books can be taught more clearly and explicitly by using scrolls  and mapping .
  • Textmapping involves long paper scrolls, colored markers, and a spatially-descriptive form of marking called mapping.
  • It has seven key instructional benefits
  • It is easy to learn and easy to implement in the classroom.
  • Implementation costs are very low.
  • It has been used with mainstream, ESL, and special needs classes at all levels, from elementary through college.
Bullet point Textmapping enables teachers to clearly and explicitly model reading comprehension, writing and study skills in the course of regular classroom instruction.
Bullet point Textmapping shines a light on the pre-reading process. It focuses more attention on, and spends more time with, the text itself - lingering on the page, delaying abstraction, forcing readers to engage in a more careful in-context comprehension of both the big picture and the details, and enabling teachers to explicitly and systematically model comprehension processes.
Bullet point It is low-tech, easy to learn, easy to teach, requires no special equipment, and can be adapted easily and inexpensively for use in the classroom. All you need is access to a copier, tape or glue-stick, and colored pencils, markers, or crayons.

Here's what it looked like in my classroom:


This was a literacy lesson in my reading class.  My objective was to teach features of non-fiction text.  I like to do a quick lesson on this at the beginning of the year because they do encounter this from day one.  If I waited until we do our non-fiction unit, a lot of learning would be lost.  For this lesson, I copied the next lesson we would be covering in our social studies class. 

I paired my friends, they taped together their scrolls, and we went to work.  I posted this on my Pro Board, and worked through it with them.

My friends really enjoyed this lesson.  First of all, it had them out of their seats and using highlighters!  More to the point, I liked the lesson for several reasons:
  • I found having the entire lesson visible at the same time, rather than just two open book pages, allowed them to see and make connections across the lesson that they wouldn't usually make. 
  • Highlighting and discussing the different text features really drew their attention to the set-up of non-fiction texts, particularly our social studies textbook since that is what we used.
  • I totally killed two birds with one stone with this lesson.  The section of text I copied was the social studies lesson I was to read and teach the next day.  Because my friends had so much interaction with the text during mapping, I was able to skip the lesson part and jump right to the assessment which they did very well on.  Their comprehension was spot-on.
So, if you haven't tried text mapping, I would suggest visiting the site for The Textmapping Project and reading more about it.  I think you will like it.

By the way, they write it as one word: textmapping.  I'm thinking it should be two words: text mapping.  So, just to be fair I think I mixed it up in this post! Totally on purpose, of course! ;-P

26 comments:

  1. I've done text mapping in the classroom, and the kids LOVE it. My classroom is on the small side, so when we do text mapping we have to stretch down the hallways ... which the students also love. ;)

    Jen
    Runde's Room

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    1. Here's more about Why to Use Scrolls: http://www.textmapping.org/whyUseScrolls.pdf

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  2. Nancy, I love this idea! We do parts of this all the time but the cohesiveness of this lesson is great. I'll definitely be borrowing this idea. :)

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  3. Hi Jen and Stacey! So glad you liked this idea. It was introduced to me at at workshop, and I couldn't wait to try it. I have to say, it is always a good lesson!
    Thanks for commenting!

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  4. This is such a great idea! Our ELA person has shared this as a strategy but I hadn't ever tried it! I definitely will this year! This looks awesome!

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  5. This is great! I am going to try this with my small ELD group first and see how it goes. Thanks for the ideas...the photos really help.

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  6. Whooo, this looks interesting. I am starting non-fiction soon and think I will try this!
    Beth
    Thinking of Teaching

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  7. Very cool! I am glad you found the site, and that you are using scrolls and textmapping with your students!

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  8. Wow! This is amazing. What a great way to tie in social studies into a literacy block! I'm going to recreate this lesson this week with my kiddos. Thanks for a wonderful idea!

    Elizabeth

    Fun in Room 4B

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  9. This sounds very interesting! I am thinking about using it with a Social Studies lesson, just to see how it goes. My kids love using highlighters and pens.

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    1. Oh, Anon! Do it! I promise you and your friends will love it. If you do it, pop back in and let us know how it went.

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  10. My goodness! I LOVED this idea when I found it on Pinterest. That's why I started following your blog. I just did text-mapping yesterday and today (I'm going with a dash in the middle, lol) and it was FABULOUS! I even posted about it on my blog. I linked back to you. I love your blog, and I loved this idea! My kids loved it too.

    http://www.nerdynerdynerdy.com/2012/03/text-mapping.html

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    1. Hi Mrs. Thompson. I'm so glad the text mapping worked for you. (Notice no day and a space! LOL!!) I just did it again this week myself. The kids really do love it and they get the content in a fun way. I think it is great that you blogged about it. More people need to try it!

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  11. I just started blogging and have to say I am in love with your blog! I have yet to post on mine but have found so many useful and creative ideas from your posts that I can't wait to get back into the swing of things (I am currently on maternity leave). Thank you so much for taking the time to write all of this great information. As a new-ish teacher it is wonderful to find so many great ideas. I feel like I hit the jackpot!

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    1. Hi Mrs. Bent! Thanks for the kind words. Good luck with your blog. I always encourage teachers sharing ideas and blogs are a great way to do it.

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  12. Question/Clarification - you glued/taped several copies of a non-fiction text that were related (S.S. lesson?) or different smaller non-fiction pieces? Onto what did you glue/tape these non-fiction pieces? thanks

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    1. Hi Anon. I made copies of a lesson from their social studies textbook. The kids then tape the papers together in order, taping from the back. That creates the long scroll you see in the pictures. The point is that they see the entire lesson spread out rather than just two pages at a time. It allows them to make connections they may not have made viewing it in segments as we do in a book. This is a great way to text map with students of any age.

      If you wanted to use different articles on the same topic, you would need to come up with some specific things to hightlight such as; new vocabulary, main idea, etc. I would use one color highlighter for each, such as all new vocab in any article is pink, the main idea in each article is yellow. That will allow you to easily compare the info you find across the articles, sort of treating it like one text. I would only suggest this approach if you have older students. If you have a youger crowd, I would stick to using one cohesive piece such as a social studies or science lesson. Hope this helps!

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  13. I love your blog, too! It's so upbeat and full of great ideas. Do you think textmapping would work with fiction pieces? I was also thinking of doing it for my poetry unit--tape several poems that have similar themes together. Students can then highlight figurative language, support for theme, tone/mood words, etc. Keep up the great work!

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    1. Good questions! I haven't really thought about it before, but I think textmapping would work nicely with poetry. You really have to have that common thread though that will tie it all together in some way. I'm not so sure it would work as well with other types of fiction just because of the length. I think it would be neat to see different types of poems on a similar topic scrolled together.
      I do believe the real power of textmapping lies in its use with nonfiction text. But, yes, I do think it could work with poetry. If you try it, please check back in and let us know how it worked. I would love to hear!
      Good luck!!

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  14. Hi Nancy! I found this via my friend Elizabeth from Fun in Room 4B. I just wanted to say a huge thanks for all of this information! I am starting this right away this week during S.S. I love your blog!!! :)

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  15. What a great idea! I was wondering if I could borrow it and post about it on my blog (giving you proper credit, of course)?

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  16. do you think this would work with 2nd graders? I do have the gate cluster in my class and think that most of them would do really well?

    Sylvia

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    1. YES! YES! YES! I promise your second graders will love it, and you will be stunned at how much they will get out of the text! Good luck! Let me know how it goes.

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  17. I'm not sure that I fully understand how to do this. It looks like to me that this is a prereading strategy that you do with non fiction. The students are noticing the text features and highlighting them. I would think you could could also highlight vocab words and context clues. Maybe even ask questions before reading. After you do all that you read it. Am I understanding this right? Also, do you read it on the scroll or in the book? After you read it do you do anything else with the scroll?

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    1. Kim, you pretty much have it. It is a great pre-reading strategy that focuses students on identifying text features. But, as you noted, you can adapt the lesson in many ways for many purposes. One of the reasons I like to use it, beyond the text feature lesson, is that it presents a textbook lesson that would normally be visible two pages at a time as a whole. It makes it easier for the kids to make connections in the text between pages. As for reading the lesson, you can always read it in the textbook, but I like reading it off the scroll. Once they have some practice with it, you won't need to copy the book pages and do this. They should be able to apply the skills and strategies to the book.

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  18. I love the all-in-one view-- genius! Thanks for sharing. Caitlin (The-Room-Mom.com)

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