Think of interesting ideas and questions to write about:
* I make predictions
* I write my opinions about some parts I did not understand
* I connect what I read to something that happened to me
* I copy a particular line or phrase that I thought was well-written
* I compare stories and characters
* I tell why I chose a book
* I tell about some writing techniques I learned from the author that I want to try in my own stories
I show that I understand literary elements such as plot, setting, character development and theme:
* I describe a character’s traits (selfish, helpful, shy, friendly, and so-on)
* I tell how a character changed and give reasons for the change
* I describe the story’s problem and its resolution
* I describe the story’s setting (where it took place)
* I write about the story’s theme (the main idea or message)
I describe the writing styles and authors:
* I tell what I like about the way an author writes
* I compare books with different authors
* I copy the author’s descriptions that put pictures in my mind
* I copy lines from a story that show how the author writes
I tell about myself a reader:
* I write about my favorite books and authors
* I describe my childhood memories or stories
* I write about an experience I had in a library, a bookstore, or book fair
* I write about the ways I have changed as a reader
* I write about my reading habits. Where, when, and how I liked to read.
* I write about people, family, and friends, who influenced my reading
• REACTIONS: Take time to write down your reaction to the text. If you’re intrigued by certain statements or attracted to characters or issues, write your response.
• MAKE CONNECTIONS: What does the reading make you think of? Does it remind you of anything or anyone? Make connections with other texts or concepts or historic events. Do you see any similarities?
• ASK QUESTIONS: What perplexes you about a particular passage? Try beginning, “I wonder why…” or “I’m having trouble understanding how…’ or “It perplexes me that…” or “I was surprised when ….”
• AGREE / DISAGREE: On what points, or about what issues, do you agree or disagree? Write down supporting ideas. Try arguing with the author. Think of your journal as a place to carry on a dialogue with the author.
• QUOTES: Write down striking words, images, phrases, or details. Speculate about them. Why did the author choose them? What do they add to the story? Why did you notice them? Divide your notebook page in half and copy words from the text onto the left side; write your responses on the right.
• POINT OF VIEW: How does the author’s attitude shape the way the writer presents the material?