My students struggle with writing about textual evidence. They can find evidence in the text to support their idea(s), but they can’t always articulate their thoughts about the piece of evidence. I've made the process more engaging for students by comparing writing commentary to making a sandwich! When students see the process as more formulaic, they are more confident in their writing.
I use this strategy to help my students “dive in” to literary analysis. After my students practice, I like to give them a new piece of literature to practice this skill. It will work with all pieces! This exercise takes practice and scaffolding, but my students have tremendously improved their commentary writing/literary analysis skills because of this process.
- Link to video for walking students through the process
- Printable guide for students to practice skills
- Overview of activity for teachers