It is essential that students understand that reading is so much more than memorizing details within a story so that they can robotically summarize it back to us. So often it seems students, and teachers for that matter, get stuck within the text, causing conversations surrounding text to be dull and stuck at surface level.
This is a great beginning of the year activity to get students to consider how taking discussion to the beyond and about the text levels and getting the opportunity to generate their own discussion points surrounding texts makes reading so much more enjoyable and engaging.
I use the beginning chapters of Sharon Draper's fabulous novel, Out of My Mind, as a read aloud and then hand out the activity which includes three different sets of reading questions (without the students knowing this). From there, students discuss the activity with other students who answered the same questions as them (still without knowing that other groups had different questions).
After that, we come together as a whole group to debrief and analyze how the different questions impacted the different group discussions and ultimately, to talk about how students want to be treated as readers. A great way to set the tone for the school year that reading is THINKING!