Making Connections with Text Lesson #1

Making Connections with Text - Three Free Lessons

This is the first of three lessons on teaching ‘Making Connections with Text.’ Teaching students to make connections between previous knowledge, experiences, and emotions and the text they are reading, will —

    • help the reader become more involved with the text
    • improve attention span when reading
    • enhance understanding of difficult material
    • help students retain information

Where to Begin

Bloom's Taxonomy

Begin by modeling for your students. Offer information such as:

Text to Text

  • This book reminds me of —- [another book] because —-.

Text to Self

  • I felt like —- when —-.
  • If this happened to me, I would —-.

Text to Media

  • This story reminds me of — [name specific TV show, movie, etc.] because —.

Text to World

  • This reminded me of what is happening in [name specific event] because —-. 

Often ‘text to self’ is the easiest place to start. Once students have seen the teacher model, they will often began making connections on their own.

Next ask questions to get students involved in the discussion. These might include:

Text to Text

  • How did something you have read help you better understand this?
  • How is this text similar to or different from other things you have read?
  • What other book does this remind you of?

Text to Self

  • How did reading this make you feel?
  • Have you ever experienced something like this?
  • What has happened in your life to help you better understand this?

Text to Media

  • What [movie, TV show, song, or other media] did this remind you of?
  • What did you learn from [television, films, songs, etc.] that helped you better understand this text?
  • How did the [song] help you understand this text?
  • What part of this text relates to the movie you saw?

Text to World

  • What has happened in the world that is similar to this text?
  • How did your knowledge of [what is happening in the world] help you better understand this text?
  • What part reminds you of something in the world around us?

Graffiti Notes Organizers

Get the printable here.

Free Graphic Organizers to use when Teaching Making Connections with Text

For students to begin making their own connections without prompting, you may wish for them to have an organizer with guiding questions.

Having students draw and color notes (a left brain activity) while studying facts (a right brain activity) promotes learning since both sides of the brain are active. The improved communication helps students focus and retain information.

The organizers provided are based on this idea. I call this type of resource “Graffiti Notes.” If you have students cut away the borders, these will fit into an interactive notebook to use as a reference.

Color copies may be used as class displays. Black and white versions may be duplicated for students.

Select the version that works best for you. Three connections and four connections are provided. If you wish to include movies, songs, video games, TV programs, etc. in the ‘Text to World’ connection use the version with three connections.

The student copies with lines may be used for writing definitions and/or question prompts. 

Gay Miller

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