Today my eighth graders read “Louie, His Cousin, and His Other Cousin.” In this vignette, we’re introduced to a family of cousins that live on Esperanza’s block (one of which is Marin, the oldest, who we will talk about tomorrow!) and one of them is the unnamed cousin who one day shows up with a brand new, shiny, yellow car. Everyone’s super excited at first, riding around and around the block. But suddenly…the cop sirens go off and Louie tells everyone to get out and speeds away.
We read this section aloud and then talked about what happened. It doesn’t directly state anywhere that the car was stolen, so the students had to make this inference based on the fact that Louie was quick to speed away as soon as he heard the sirens.
To try something new with my students, I asked them to pretend they were newspaper reporters, and write the scene from the mind and voice of a reporter. They first had to explain what they thought happened (from their mindset) and then write a paragraph from the mind of a local reporter.
This was fun (for most kids!) 🙂 They had the freedom to be creative–name Louie’s cousin, give a date, add details to the event, and expand as they pleased!
Here’s a few student examples:
Even though some kids complained about this, they did well! And I had fun reading and assessing what they came up with.