How to Use the Multi-Cultural Brief Study Guides?
Pre-reading Questions: these questions draw students into the topic of the article. The rationale for these questions is that thinking and talking about the topic before reading aids comprehension. These questions can be discussed by the whole class or in smaller groups.
Vocabulary: We have selected words that seem important to understanding the overall meaning or some interesting detail. They are words that may be new for the students and that we think will be useful and interesting for them to know. The list is limited to 8-10 words because that seems to be the maximum number of new words that we can expect students to learn at any one time. You may choose different words, based on the level, needs, and interests of your students.
Post-reading Questions: These questions check a) comprehension of what is written in the article, and b) move students beyond what is found in the article to inferences and opinions. We also try to include a question about the main idea. Students may be encouraged to skim and scan for the answers, as a way to develop those reading skills. Students may write answers to the questions first and then share and discuss answers or they may find and write the answers together. Alternatively, you may have students only discuss and not write.
Write Your Experience: This is an opportunity for students to express in writing their own experiences or opinions about the topic. At this point, they are bringing together what they talked about in the pre-reading activity and in the post-reading discussion. Some of the study guides have more structured writing activities (e.g. completing sentence starters) and some have more open ended writing activities. You may choose to adjust the writing activity to fit the level of your students. The purpose however is to provide a further opportunity for students to express themselves, and to do so in writing. These stories can then be shared in class or read only by the teacher. They can be corrected and re-written or left as is.