ELA.RL.9-10.1

Common core State Standards

  • ELA:  English Language Arts
  • RL:  Reading Standards for Literature 6-12
  • 9-10:  9th & 10th Grades
  • 1: 
    Cite strong and thorough textual evidence to support analysis of what the text
    says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.

Download Common Core State Standards (PDF 1.2 MB)

Silent Tea Party: Pre-Reading for Challenging Texts
Lesson Objective: Make predictions from quotes to prepare for a challenging text
Grades 9-12 / ELA / Literature
ELA.RL.9-10.1

Thought starters

  1. How do the quotes and questionnaire help students prepare for a challenging text?
  2. What evidence must students provide to support their questionnaire answers?
  3. How does Ms. Fulco ensure students understand the 'big ideas' during the whole class discussion?
31 Comments
I would love to use this with my six graders. Would suggest any modifications?
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Thanks for giving me new insight about pre-reading activity. Got to try it soon..:)
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Wow I love this idea for a lesson! Fun, incorporates movement, challenging, engaging.
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This is a great idea! I love that it challenges students and it forces them to analyze, and use their critical thinking skills. It's a great way for students to get to know characters before actually reading the text. It encourages common core skills, and for students to grow as learners. Students in my class would benefit from this lesson plan.
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i would love to have a copy of your lesson plan and if you could send this video, since we cant download it from here teacher Mary Elizabeth. Thanks so much! here is my email: michaelracelis@rocketmail.com
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Transcripts

  • TEACHING CHANNEL / SILENT TEA PARTY
    INTERVIEW WITH MARY ELIZABETH FULCO

    MARY ELIZABETH FULCO:
    My name is Mary Elizabeth Fulco and

    TEACHING CHANNEL / SILENT TEA PARTY
    INTERVIEW WITH MARY ELIZABETH FULCO

    MARY ELIZABETH FULCO:
    My name is Mary Elizabeth Fulco and I'm a 10th grade English at Staples High School, and my lesson idea is a silent tea party. I start the silent tea party lesson at the door, giving them their questionnaire sheet and a quotation that was taken from the first chapter of The Catcher in the Rye that has significant meaning to draw about the character or the setting or the plot of the story.
    (classroom)
    As we start this challenging book, I’m going to be exposing you guys to some quotes from the first chapter, so you guys can familiarize yourself with this complex character, OK, that is going to be a challenge to really figure out.
    (interview)
    I like to use it as a way of getting the students excited about a text, and as an introduction to a new book. It’s an anticipatory set. It’s the fact that they don't really know the story, they don't really know the character. It’s all a mystery.
    (classroom)
    What this activity is called is called a silent tea party. And as we do this activity, you're going to be gathering a lot of quotations, and you're going to be using those quotations and interpreting them, analyzing them to answer these questions.
    (interview)
    The quotations that I give them are actually attached to a questionnaire sheet. That questionnaire sheet has seven questions. It asks about how the character's feeling, or where is the character when he's speaking. They use those quotations to answer those questions.
    (classroom)
    Before I let you go and you do your activity -- silently -- you need to look at your quote, because your quote is a clue, too.
    (interview)
    Each student has their own quotation. By having everyone have a different quotation it guarantees that no matter who you match yourself up with, you will always have something new, something to do on the questionnaire, something to add on to a thought.
    (classroom)
    Are we set to be silent? Get up, move around, shake hands.
    (interview)
    The rules of the activity are to first get up and move around the classroom. They will be interacting with each other but they will have to do that silently. The silence really assures that they're really trying to work it out on their own. So in order to interact silently, they will be shaking each other's hands. The handshake indicates that they will be exchanging their quotes. They will then read the new quote that they receive and then try to figure out which question on the questionnaire sheet they can use this quote to answer. The objections are analysis, deep thinking, close reading, looking at the meaning of that sentence, and trying to apply it to a broader meaning. They then write their response to the question. They record the quotation number that they used to answer that question, and then once they're done they will shakes hands one more time and get their original quote back, and then move on. I will only give about ten minutes, with the expectation that they will not have finished, and that actually sets it up to make the next step of the lesson more valuable. The second stage of the lesson is for them to work in small groups. They work together going over all of the questions, trying to fill in any of the answers that they do not have, and talk, communicate, clarify anything that they might not understand.
    STUDENT 1:
    He says, "I’ve left schools and places I didn't even know I was leaving them. I hate that." so it sounds like he doesn't like leaving.
    MARY ELIZABETH FULCO:
    The closing stage of the lesson is for them to be brought together as a big class, and what that allows is for me to know that they actually use that time wisely.
    (classroom)
    What question could I use this quote to support? "I was flunking four subjects and not applying myself in all."
    STUDENT 2:
    You could answer with number five.
    MARY ELIZABETH FULCO:
    Number five. This one's interesting. Right? I think you're spot on. How old do you think the narrator is? Why do you think this? How could this quote, Josh, possibly give you a clue for how old this narrator is?
    STUDENT 2:
    Well, he says he's in school, so he's probably below 18.
    MARY ELIZABETH FULCO:
    That is awesome!
    (interview)
    I think that the design of this lesson actually promotes success. They feel very confident, and they analyze without knowing it.
    (classroom)
    Where do we think he is?
    STUDENT 3:
    Maybe he got taken out and put in a mental facility, or some kind of hospital?
    MARY ELIZABETH FULCO:
    Mental facility, whoa. Where did you get that?
    STUDENT 3:
    Uh, well, he used the word madmen stuff.
    MARY ELIZABETH FULCO:
    Good.
    (interview)
    I like it because I get really good results. They really do analyze, and they really do read closely, and they make wonderful connections.
    STUDENT 4:
    In quote number nine he said, "I felt like I was sort of disappearing."
    MARY ELIZABETH FULCO:
    So how could I use that word, disappearing, to come up with a feeling?
    STUDENT 4:
    He feels lonely.
    MARY ELIZABETH FULCO:
    Why would you use that as evidence for him feeling lonely?
    STUDENT 5:
    If he feels like he doesn't exist, and he feels like he's not getting any attention, he's not really there, so he may feel like nobody really cares.
    MARY ELIZABETH FULCO:
    They grow as learners, they grow as readers, and they become very excited about reading a challenging book, which is always a victory.
    * * *END OF AUDIO* * *
    * * *END OF TRANSCRIPT* * *

School Details

Staples High School
70 North Avenue
Westport CT 06880
Population: 1885

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Mary Elizabeth Fulco

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