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Marissa Palminteri

Educ 139
Thompson, G. (2003) The West: Its History and People. Washington,
D.C: National Geographic.
5 copies of the book
Post-its for each student
One group poster/sheet that everyone can look onto
Paper and a writing utensil for each student
CLL (Guided Reading)
Common Core
RI.4.7 Interpret information presented visually, orally, or
quantitatively (e.g., in charts, graphs, diagrams, time lines,
animations, or interactive elements on Web pages) and explain how
the information contributes to an understanding of the text in which
it appears.
RI.4.5 Describe the overall structure (e.g., chronology, comparison,
cause/effect, problem/solution) of events, ideas, concepts, or
information in a text or part of a text.
Introduce the title of the book The West: Its History and People
o What do you all know about the West? What are some things
the West is famous for? What are some of the western states?
Picture walk with headings
o Go through the book on your own and be sure to look at the
headings on each page to get an idea of what kind of
information you might learn from those pages (go over what a
heading is) along with the visuals included throughout the
Did you notice any patterns throughout the book relating to its
structure or how it is set up?
o Headings, chronological order, real photographs, blurbs about
important people, and sketches of historical events that
occurred in the past.
Reading the Text
Now I want everyone to turn to page 10 and 11. In a few minutes
you are going to read silently to yourself about the Chinook Village. I

want you to pay close attention to the pictures and diagrams

included in addition to the text and how the pictures help you
understand the text better. I want you to put one post-it next to
whichever picture helps you the most in furthering your
understanding about the Chinook Village and briefly explain why it
was helpful.
Have students share which picture they found to be most helpful
and why and what, if any, other students also chose that picture as
being helpful or if there was another picture.
o Talk about how because people have different background
knowledge, sometimes certain pictures are more helpful to
one person than another depending on what they already
Have students turn to page 13. Sometimes the diagrams that help
us further our understanding of the reading comes in the form of
blurbs about people.
Tell students that now they are going to look through the headings
from the rest of the text and choose two more events they are most
interested in reading about. Do the same thing for each of the
events you just chose and place a post-it next to the visual that
helped you understand the text the most.
Teacher will check in with individual students to see their thinking
about pictures.
When students have finished reading about their two other events
and have included a post-it for each relating back to a diagram or
picture, direct them to close their books and wait to share.

Discussion Points
Once all students are ready, have students share out what section
they chose to read about and what picture they chose from that
section that was especially helpful when it came to their
comprehension of the text.
How did they decide which section to read about?
Do you think there are certain historical events where the pictures
were more beneficial or key to your overall understanding?
o When you know less about an idea or event, pictures can be
more helpful in visualizing such an unknown concept
compared to learning more about something you already
know or have heard of.
Processing Strategy
One specific type of visual representation that is sometimes
included in texts is a timeline. Timelines relate to the chronology of

o Helpful when you want to know the order of which things

happen or even to see any changes that occur over time.
Using the example in the book as a reference point, think about the
essential components of a well-made timeline. (If you were to make
one yourself, what would you need to think about or include)
**Done on the group poster or sheet of paper
1. What is this timeline about? How did you know?
-Need a title of your timeline that clues the reader in to
what the timeline is describing.
2. How do people decide what events to include in a timeline
-Why might you not want to include all of the events during
that time period in your timeline?
3. How do people decide where to begin and where to end?
What do you notice about the dates in the timeline?
-Increments should be the same between dates
-Dates start at furthest in the past to most recent
4. Creative elements in timelines
-Some timelines, like the one shown, include a visual going
along with the description.

Extension Activity
T-P-S this activity by having students apply the process strategy
they just learned to create a timeline of their own lives and then
sharing with a partner of how they created it and why they chose to
do it that way.
o Having a title
o Deciding where to begin and end
o Chronological order
o Deciding what events to include/most important
o Any other creative aspects done individually.
Word Work
Transcontinental railroad
o First asking kids what they think transcontinental means
o Breaking apart the word by its root and suffix
Trans means across
Continental means specific to the continent
Combining the two would help you understand across a
o Turn to page 17. Can also learn about what the word means
by reading about it in context. Or using the clues in the
surrounding sentences to derive meaning.
o A good reader uses these thinking strategies when they come
across words they might not know.