Jigsaws: A Strategy for Understanding Texts
Lesson Objective: Examine texts through different lenses
Grades 6-8 / ELA / Reading

Thought starters

  1. How does focusing on one element of the text encourage close reading?
  2. Notice how the groups share their findings with the class. How does this deepen understanding for both the sharers and the listeners?
  3. In what ways is the jigsaw a time-saving strategy?
I really enjoyed this video on the Jigsaw strategy, the students were divide into groups and then given a topic to discuss each students was engage within the group.
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Hi. I agree with Julia. I have been employing the jigsaw method as part of cooperative learning pedagogy for about two years now. At first, I attempted to use the jigsaw method as it is, as I had been taught previously; however, in some situations, especially when working with low level students, I had to modify it to be able to cater for their individual needs. In most of these cases, I got my students to work in expert groups without having any "home groups". Yet the results were fabulous. Even the low ones developed some complex skills as they were interacting with each other in their expert groups.
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Awesome job! The vocabulary was intense and how well the students unpacked it and worked together was such a great job! The knowledge they shown was outstanding. I am liking how common core was applied here and suddenly it does not seem so bad. LOL..
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This is a great way for the students to break open and unpack a persuasive text, and the collaboration is a great formative experience that will help you know they are ready for the next step, be that reading another persuasive piece on their own or writing a persuasive paper. Very impressed by your students and this lesson.
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I am very impressed with the knowledge your students brought to the discussion. The vocabulary of persuasion such as ethos and pathos, as well as their consideration of the use of parallel structure. This lesson included a synthesis of information the students must have acquired over time. Do you have a text of some kind for reference, or do you find all of the resources on your own? Great lesson and excellent application of common core goals!
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  • Strategies: Jigsaw Method
    00:00:04 JULIE MANLEY: One of the things that I do to move students through fairly complex tasks is

    Strategies: Jigsaw Method
    00:00:04 JULIE MANLEY: One of the things that I do to move students through fairly complex tasks is to use a jigsaw method. I distribute a model text of a persuasive speech and wanted students to look at that speech to analyze its argumentative elements. TEXT:
    Julie Manley
    8th Grade ELA Teacher
    Chinook Middle School, Bellevue, WA
    00:00:22 JULIE MANLEY: So, you guys are going to be group one. You guys are group two. You guys are three. TEXT:
    Divide students into groups
    00:00:29 JULIE MANLEY: I use the jigsaw for close reading of informational text where I gave student groups one element of argumentation to read for and really become an expert on so that they could talk about it with the peers that also were expert on that one element of argumentation and then teach the rest of the class. TEXT:
    Give each group a different task
    00:00:49 JULIE MANLEY: So, guys, it sounds like you're about done chatting with each other. I'm going to ask for volunteers at this point.
    00:00:54 BOY: I said a counter argument to support the other side of the topic. TEXT:
    Groups report out their task
    00:00:59 GIRL: I said that you need to make a poignant claim that you can credibly backup with logic and reason.
    00:01:05 BOY: I said that they should have rhetorical devices such as anaphora and parallel structure.
    00:01:13 GIRL: I think it works okay; but since he's kind of targeting the audience of his peers, he could, the ethos or I mean the pathos could be really easy for him. But, he couldn't, he didn't use it. And he didn't use any anecdotes in his paragraph. TEXT:
    Generating explanations increases understanding
    00:01:28 JULIE MANLEY: Guys, I hope you're madly writing that down. That is so important.
    00:01:33 JULIE MANLEY: What I find most effective about the jigsaw is students are at the center of the learning and translating it into their own language so that they can then teach their peers, and I'm able to be really a facilitator of that learning and that knowledge making.

    Tch TeachingChannel

School Details

Chinook Middle School
11650 S.E. 60th
Bellevue WA 98006
Population: 1026

Data Provided By:



Julie Manley


TCH Special

Grades 6-12, All Subjects, Civic Engagement

TCH Special

Grades 6-12, All Subjects, Civic Engagement

TCH Special

Grades 6-12, All Subjects, Civic Engagement

Teaching Practice

All Grades / All Subjects / Collaboration