RL.4.7 – Ideas for Teaching Kids to Make Text-Media Connections

Looking for ideas on how to teach Common Core State Standard RL.4.7? Check out these examples of media for classic literature. Your students will make connections between text, visual and oral presentations. In addition, they’ll analyze poetry, songs, videos, and art.

Ms. Sneed Teaches RL.4.7

Our favorite fourth grade teacher wrinkled her brow. “Hey,” she said to her co-teacher, “how on earth are we going to teach this weird standard:

RL.4.7 Make connections between the text of a story or drama and a visual or oral presentation of the text, identifying where each version reflects specific descriptions and directions in the text.”

Mr. Frank shrugged. “What does that even mean?”

Without hesitation, Ms. Sneed clicked to the Common Core Anchor Standards for Reading. Here’s the statement for all grade levels:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.R.7 Integrate and evaluate content presented in diverse media and formats, including visually and quantitatively, as well as in words.”

“Ah,” Mr. Frank said, “media. Obviously, they want fourth graders to analyze media.”

Ms. Sneed nodded. “That makes sense.”

After a bit of searching on Teachers pay Teachers, she found a helpful literature unit. “Take a look at this text-media resource,” she said to her partner. “It would be a fun addition to our ELA block.

Direct Instruction of RL.4.7 – What Are Media?

Mr. Frank peered over her shoulder. “Um-hm. Looks like this teaching progression begins with a slideshow.”

“Right,” Ms. Sneed responded. “In the beginning, kids learn about media. Then they consider one stanza of ‘The Queen of Hearts.’ After visualizing, they are presented with four different images. Then they discuss how each image changed they way they felt about the character.”

“This would also reinforce elements of poetry,” Mr. Frank added.

To satisfy RL.4.7, kids consider how four different images change the meaning of a stanza of "The Queen of Hearts."
Are you feeling “pinspired”? Feel free to pin images from this post.

RL.4.7 Practice with “The Queen of Hearts”

Next, Mr. Frank looked more closely at the preview. “After direct instruction, kids study images that correspond to ‘The Queen of Hearts.’ Interestingly, they were created by Randolph Caldecott.”

“The guy that the Caldecott Award was named for?”

“One in the same. First, kids analyze these illustrations. To satisfy RL.4.7, they consider how the illustration supports the text. Then they consider what they would do differently if they were the illustrator.”

Kids analyze four images that support "The Queen of Hearts."

“Wow!” Ms. Sneed exclaimed. “That’s takes them to the highest level of thinking. Love it.”

“To wrap up their work with this poem, kids match eight sketches with stanzas they support.”

More Practice with My Father’s Dragon

Ms. Sneed clicked on the next preview. “For more practice with RL.4.7,” she said, “kids read a story called My Father’s Dragon. As they read, they match images with text and annotate.”

For more practice with RL.4.7, kids read the full text of My Father's Dragon and match illustrations with passages.

“Cool! Definitely going to be a hit with our kids.”

Exploring Media for Alice in Wonderland

Finally, Ms. Sneed clicked on the preview of the bonus file. “Look at this,” she said. “as a grand finale, kids analyze all kinds of media for Alice in Wonderland. In addition to this shape poem, they can access stories, songs, plays, audio, videos, and art. Wow. Just wow.”

For more practice with RL.4.7, kids explore a shape poem. Links for more media are included.

“Sometimes,” said Mr. Frank, “I like to take an idea and run. You know, make my own stuff. But I think we should just buy this unit for RL.4.7. After all, how long would it take us to create something literature activities this?”

Ms. Sneed laughed. “Agreed!”

Enjoy Teaching

Investigating connections makes learning fun for kids. Whenever you read a story, ask students to analyze visual presentations. First, how do they reflect specific descriptions and directions? Second, how do they alter the meaning? And third, if you were the illustrator, how would you do it differently? When you make this a habit, kids notice media more. Furthermore, they tune up their critical and creative thinking skills.

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