Students are used to doing multiple drafts of a writing assignment. This process introduces them to the idea that it often takes multiple readings to understand a text, especially a challenging one.
This is process that language arts teachers or teachers in other disciplines can use to help students understand non-fiction texts. It is meant to be used with very short texts or excerpts. It will guide students through three readings of the chosen text, each time asking them to focus on a different element of the text. First, they will focus on the big ideas (modeled on the the SOAPStone method). Second, they will look at the structure of the text, and finally they will note the details.
This guide is intended for high school students with some background knowledge about non-fiction texts. However, it can easily be scaffolded for less experienced students. Teachers may model any of the three sections or use any section for a whole-class guided reading. Students may also work on this process in pairs or small groups. This is also a perfect reading assignment prior to a Socratic seminar on a short text or excerpt.