Making Across the Curriculum – text deconstruction with English Language Learners

Out of Eden Learn- Footstep 3

Parts, Purposes and Complexities Out of Eden Learn Footstep 3 with ELL students.

Parts, Purposes and Complexities – Out of Eden Learn Footstep 3 with ELL students.

As part of our English Language Learners curriculum, my class participates in Out of Eden Learn’s Stories Human Migration Project. To read more about how I use Out of Eden Learn and the Global Thinking Routines by Veronica Boix Mansilla, please read this previous post.

Learning Objectives

This year, I used the Making Move, Parts, Purposes and Complexities with the learning objective of developing my students’ ability to deconstruct texts and to create conversational opportunities for verbally describing texts- to talk about the observable connections and complexities of texts.

This connects with the Making Capacities of being sensitive to design. My learning intention for using this Making Move was to encourage close observation of the texts and for students to look at and talk about the whole text and how the parts interact to engage an audience and to convey the author’s meaning.

What did we do in class?

Students used the Making Move Thinking Routine of Parts, Purposes, Complexities to look closely at a text.  In small groups, students read three different text types from Footstep 3 on Out of Eden Learn’s Stories of Human Migration. Please click the image below to read the students’ analysis. The yellow stickers are written by students in response to the poster presentation.

Student work- Parts, Purposes, Complexity analysis

What did the students learn and how do I know?

Using their posters, students initiated class discussions. While they were explaining their posters I noticed that students were looking at the texts from different levels- the ideas, paragraphs and sentence and then at a word level. This discussion provided the opportunity to make connections between the headings, layout of texts and the positioning of images and videos.

In class, we used these posters to share the three text analyses as a resource for their post response to Footstep 3, on Out of Eden Learn’s online platform. Here are two girls’ posts comparing texts.

What did I learn?

I learnt that the process of looking closely and naming the parts of a text leads to deeper conversations that explore how a ‘real’ person composed the text in a certain way to achieve their objectives.

For English Language Learners this conversation is important. It created an opportunity for them to notice and discuss how different texts can be broken down into parts and to see the purpose of the author and the reasons for their word or image choices.


Making Across the Curriculum

Making Across the Curriculum Project

Agency by Design Thinking Routines

Agency by Design Documentation and Assessment


Reflect Connect Project


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