Saturday, May 5, 2012

Synthesizing with The Wednesday Surprise

Each year I use The Wednesday Surprise by Eve Bunting to do a lesson on synthesis. Synthesis is when your thinking changes during reading. This book is a great choice because it is short and sweet and your thinking changes quite drastically from the beginning to the end.
 I have taught this lesson for years with only one copy of the book. This year I ordered a class set and it made a big difference. In the middle we start to think  that the main character, Anna, will be reading to her father as his birthday surprise. Synthesizing through this part was the most difficult. I found we had to reread the page three times for full understanding. Having a class set really helped with this. At the end we find out that the surprise is really that the grandmother cannot read. Anna taught her to read and they surprised the father on his birthday. This was a great place it introduce the word: illiterate.
The next day I decided to review those spots in the text when the author either mislead the reader or left us a clue as to what the story was really about. I went through the text and created this worksheet.

We wrote our notes about what was happening to us as  readers on the opposite side. Christine


  1. This is a great lesson!
    I printed it for next year and tucked your notes inside my copy of the book.
    Thanks for sharing...

    Finding JOY in 6th Grade

  2. Christine, thank you so much for your thoughtful posts. I love reading your blog and have learned so much from you! Have you been introduced to Miss Bonger's blog? I follow both of you religiously. Hope you enjoy another resource :)

  3. Yes, I love her blog!!!! Thanks for commenting. Christine