Metacognitive Skills - Synthesizing
- Definition: the combining of information from various sources. In this sense, synthesizing is creative. Readers must create a single understanding from a variety of sources. Being literate in the 21st century means being able to deal with multiple information sources and make sense of it all.
- The ability to take information and put it together to form something new.
- “Synthesizing involves reflection across text.” (p.149, Duffy, 2003)
- “Synthesizing often results in a product. We usually synthesize because we are creating something new or producing a solution to a problem.” (p.149, Duffy, 2003)
- Readers need to bring together parts or elements of text to create a new understanding. (Fountas & Pinnell, 2001)
- “Synthesizing is the strategy that allows readers to change their thinking.” (Harvey & Goudvis, 2000)
Clearly Identified Key Outcomes
Balanced Assessment Practices
- T-Charts that list predictions (before) and support (during) reading. After finishing a selection, a third column should be added where students can adjust their predictions. Evaluate students based on whether or not their prediction is logical rather than if it’s correct.
- Teacher-student discussions.
- Student-student conversations.
Purposeful Instructional Strategies
- KWL charts
- Graphic and semantic organizers
- Conversations (teacher – student & student – student)
- Deepen background understanding
- Explain synthesizing as: “putting the pieces together in a new way”
- Verb list for synthesizing: create, imagine, extend, compose, predict, hypothesize, compare/contrast, explain, invent, infer, improve, design, suppose that, produce, connect, outline, sort, synthesize, and categorize
- Answering questions about the text while reading – using Bloom’s Taxonomy
- Generating questions while reading – using Bloom’s Taxonomy
- Story maps, retelling, story questioning as they read
- Stop and clarify – check for understanding as reading
- Reading with the intent of expanding personal understanding by integrating reading with personal knowledge
- Relate important ideas to each other
- Summarizing learning in KWL chart
- Questions – Bloom’s Taxonomy
- Create summaries by consolidating short paragraphs or passages, into only the most important, main ideas.
- Summarize text by identifying main ideas and supporting details.
- Expanding personal understanding by reflecting on how the text can be integrated with personal knowledge
- What connections does this reading make for you?
- What are you thinking or wondering about now?
- How have our opinions and ideas, feeling and thoughts about the text changed?
RESOURCES TO SUPPORT OVERALL DEVELOPMENT
- Provide a description of important information to know and include specific strategies.
Personalization of Learning
- Have students relate information from text to their lives.
- Student questions: “What am I taking away with me?”, “What information is useful to me?” and “How does it fit, or not fit, with what I know?”