Select and read a complex text (for example, a text filled with metaphors, similes, and complex terms) . Select two or three sample passages to use as a model.
Introduce Say/Mean Chart.
The Say/Mean Chart is fundamentally about translating. For example, if you had a list of phrases in Spanish, you would write the word in Spanish in one column and its meaning in English in the other column. When we are reading texts with complex language, it requires us to translate from the literal to inferential meaning.
Model the Say/Mean Chart.
Create a t-chart with the headings “Literal” (what it says) in the left-hand column and “Inferential” (what it means) in the right-hand column. In the ”Literal” column write a passage from the text. Think aloud as you write the meaning of the passage in the “Inferential” column. Depending on the experience level of your students, a mini-lesson on making inferences or using figurative language may be necessary. Give students a sample passage; ask them to write down what they think it means. Review the answers together.
Complete the chart.
Students work individually to review the text, select difficult passages, and complete the chart.
Conduct whole-class share-out.
Lead a whole-class share-out. Be sure to ask probing questions to uncover student thinking. For example: · How did you figure that out? · What were the clues in the text that led you to that meaning?
Ask students, “How did the Say/Mean Chart help you better understand the text? Use examples from your chart to support your thinking.”