What Do You Notice?


That is an engaging question that I am going to start using more in my classroom instruction. Brilliantly simple and so powerful!

I recently read a blog posted on the importance of this question to preclude ‘What are you wondering?’ because naturally we have to notice something before we may wonder about it. The minute you are wondering about something you begin to be engaged with it and that is a big part of what I strive toward as an educator. Two words…Student engagement. It is there when authentic learning occurs and it is quite the domino effect as we think through the process. We can spark this domino process in our very own children at home so easily in many ways, but books come to mind.

For example you can ask your child what they notice about the expression on the little boy’s face on the first page in Hot Hands by Derrick Brown. Next, you can then get them to infer by asking “why do you think he may feel that way?” This helps them engage with the meaning of the text immediately. While reading Grambo you might ask the child what they notice inside of Grandma’s suitcase. This would lead to a question about why she may have certain items. Noticing things naturally leads to further thinking. Deeper thinking. And that is a huge part of a successful reader in a classroom and outside in the real world!

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