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Close Reading. Aims. To learn the various ways to answer the different types of questions in close reading To become familiar with the type of texts used in Close Reading passages To practice using the methods of answering the questions. Close Reading.

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Close Reading


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    1. Close Reading

    2. Aims • To learn the various ways to answer the different types of questions in close reading • To become familiar with the type of texts used in Close Reading passages • To practice using the methods of answering the questions.

    3. Close Reading Close reading is a test of your understandingof non-fiction texts, as well as your ability to analyse and evaluate the writer’s techniques. As it says above, the texts you will be analysing etc. are non-fiction so it is crucial that you are taking the time to read as much non-fiction as you can at home (20mins a week online – Times website for instance).

    4. Today’s Lesson Aims: • To establish prior knowledge and ability to ascertain what areas still need work.

    5. Today’s Lesson The best way to find out what you can already do is to give you a close reading paper. For some of you, the skills will be the same as you developed in S5. For those of you who are in S5 now, the questions are worded slightly differently from Standard Grade but the skills required are basically the same.

    6. Today’s Lesson There will be no come-back on you if you can’t do it, but you MUST make an attempt. At this stage, it doesn’t matter if you get the answer right. This is an opportunity for me to see what areas I need to focus on when teaching you the skills for close reading. There’s no point going over stuff if you can already do it!

    7. Close Reading – An Introduction Aims: • To understand the purpose of a text • To understand the stance of the author • To be able to pick out the key ideas of a text

    8. Close Reading – An Introduction The most fundamental part of close reading is that you understand the passage. This is something only you can develop. Being able to understand what you’ve read comes only with years of practice – which is why if you don’t actively read in your own time you MUST start…NOW!

    9. The Purpose of a Text Copy the following: The purpose of a text is the reason the author chose to write it. Purposes include: • To entertain • To inform • To persuade • To argue • To share an experience

    10. The Purpose of a Text Every text was written for a specific reason. Being able to identify that reason will enable to you understand it. If you can’t understand a text, you will find it very hard to pick it apart and analyse it, never mind say whether the writer has been successful.

    11. 2009 SQA Paper Let’s think back to the 2009 paper you did last week. Let’s start with the basics: • What was the passage about? • The effect the novels of Charles Dickens had on the black people in South Africa during apartheid. • What was the purpose behind the text? • To inform

    12. 2009 SQA Paper At times, the writer Carol Lee, tries to shock us (the opening line for example). Other than that, she presents the information without really putting across her opinion or trying to get anything out of us (emotions or laughter). As a result, its purpose must be to simply inform us of this information.

    13. Writer’s Stance Copy the following: The stance of the writer is their personal viewpoint on the topic. This is closely linked to the purpose.

    14. Writer’s Stance

    15. Writer’s Stance As we said earlier, the writer doesn’t present their opinion on this topic – she just presents the information. • What is the writer’s stance on the topic? • Neutral

    16. Key Ideas Being able to pick out the key ideas of a text is also a crucial skill. Again, it is a basic text of your understanding of the passage. Being able to do this is like taking a written text and reducing it to the “plan” the writer used to write it.

    17. Key Ideas Let’s take the 2009 paper again, bit by bit and see if we can break it down into the key ideas discussed by the writer.

    18. Key Ideas • Introduces Hector Pieterson • Explains the government’s plan for Afrikaans to be taught in schools • Explains how the works of Dickens influenced the people • Discusses the book shortages • Explanation of why Dickens’ books had such an impact • History of why stories are so enjoyed in South Africa • Conclusion – how Pieterson and Dickens helped get rid of Afrikaans.

    19. Homework! For Tuesday 18th September Read the article at the following address http://www.heraldscotland.com/arts-ents/visual/shining-a-light-on-rembrandts-tomb.1347156228 (on school website and in pick-up)

    20. Homework! Answer the following questions: • What is the article about? • What is the purpose of the article? • What is the writer’s stance on the topic? • What are the main things discussed?

    21. Types of Question Learning Intentions: • to learn the different types of question • to learn what the different types of questions require you to do • to learn how to answer “own words” questions.

    22. Types of Question The 3 types of question are: • Understanding (U) In answering these questions you will need to show an understanding of the key ideas of the text. You will be expected to identify and explain the important details and main points. • whatis being said by the writer

    23. Types of Question 2. Analysis (A) In answering these questions you will need to explain and comment on different aspects of the text’s structure and style. You will need to examine how the language shapes the meaning of the writing and helps the writer to be clearer or more precise. For example, you may be asked to look at how brackets affect the meaning of a sentence. • howis it said

    24. Types of Question 3. Evaluation (E) In answering these questions you need to decide on the effectiveness of a text. It is helpful to use critical terminology here and to think about the writer’s purpose and stance. Evidence from the text must be used to support answers. • how effectively is it said

    25. Techniques to Remember • Find the answer in the lines you are directed to in the text. • Be aware of how many marks are offered. This will indicate how much you need to write. • Pay attention to what you are asked to do. Use your own words unless the question tells you to quote.

    26. Understanding Questions As you know, these questions test your BASIC understanding of what the text is about. To test you on this there are 2 main types of understanding question: • Own words • Context questions

    27. Own Words You will have come across these before. These questions require you to take what the writer has said and explain it in your own words.

    28. Own Words To answer a question in your own words you can do the following things: • Simplify what the writer has said. • Rearrange the order of the words or phrases. • Replace words with others that mean the same thing.

    29. For Example I can picture my granddad now, sitting in his chair. His tufty white hair circled around the shiny dome of his head. His blue eyes twinkled through the swirls of stinky old pipe smoke that danced in front of him. Question – In your own words describe the writer’s granddad. 2U

    30. For Practice • Many exotic fruits lined the market stalls. Everywhere I looked there were people shoving, shouting, bartering and singing. Nearby, I could hear the wail of a snake charmer’s music as people clapped and danced along with the snake. I could hardly hear myself think. In your own words describe what the market place was like. 2U

    31. For Practice • The pickpocket had selected his target and was waiting for an opportunity to strike. He watched the lady turn to look over her shoulder, exposing her purse. The thief seized the moment. He grabbed her purse and shoved his way through the crowd and disappeared up a quiet alley before anyone even noticed him. In your own words explain what has happened. 2U

    32. For Practice • The day was scorching. The sun was beaming off the cars in the car park, dazzling everyone that walked by. In your own words describe what the weather was like. 2U

    33. For Practice • The police cars came screeching around the corner, one after the other, in pursuit of the stolen van. The van ran through a red light and smashed into an oncoming bus. It catapulted into the air and slammed into the ground. In your own words describe what happened. 2U

    34. Context Questions Learning Intentions: • To learn the process to answer a context question • To gain practice at answering context questions.

    35. Context Questions This is to do with the meaning of words – but within a specific context.

    36. Context Questions For example, take the word bright. It has several meanings: • Emitting or reflecting light • Happy or cheery • Intelligent • Full of promise The meaning attached to the word depends on the context it’s used in.

    37. Context Questions Look at the following sentence: The girl was incredibly bright. She got top marks in her maths test. Which meaning of bright is used here? How do you know?

    38. Context Questions You took your clue from the context, the words and phrases that surround the word you were asked to define. This is what you do in a context question.

    39. Context Questions Copy the following: To answer a context question you need to do the following: • Say what the word means • Explain how the context allowed you to arrive at that meaning

    40. For Example Let’s take the bright example again. The girl was incredibly bright. She got top marks in her maths test. How does the context help you understand the meaning of ‘bright’? 2U

    41. For Example Possible answer: The word bright means intelligent. I know this because the next sentence says she got top marks in a test showing she must be clever.

    42. For Practice • The woman was sceptical about the deal she was being offered. It seemed too good to be true. How does the context help you understand the word ‘sceptical’? 2U

    43. For Practice • The teacher went through the essay slowly and carefully. Her scrupulous marking meant the pupil was able to improve their work. How does the context help you understand the word ‘scrupulous’? 2U

    44. For Practice • I was both impressed and in awe at the young man’s fortitude. I couldn’t believe someone could go through such great difficulties and come out it smiling. How does the context help you understand the word ‘fortitude’? 2U

    45. For Practice • The decorations in the hall seemed a bit over the top. There were banners, balloons, ribbons, streamers, photographs and posters all over the place. It all seemed a bit superfluous. How does the context help you understand the word ‘superfluous’? 2U

    46. Analysis Analysis questions ask you about the techniques the writer has used and how they communicate meaning. Techniques include : • Word choice • Figures of speech and imagery • Sentence structure • Punctuation • Paragraph structure

    47. Word Choice Questions on word choice require you to comment on the specific words the writer has chosen and the effects those words have. To answer these questions you need to think about the connotations of the word.

    48. Word Choice Look at the following list of words. They all have the same meaning – to travel on foot. Walk Skip Shuffle Rush However, the all have different connotations

    49. Word Choice • Walk – neutral, doesn’t suggest much about the person doing the walking. • Skip – suggests the person is happy • Shuffle – suggests depression or fatigue • Rush – suggests in a hurry, perhaps stressed.