Show Me the Evidence

I will admit that I stole this idea from Ian’s 5th grade teacher, who stole it from Pinterest. I had Dee snap a picture of it at Open House.


I think it’s a great idea and it has proven to be effective in my classroom.

As we are answering extended response questions or citing evidence from the text, I direct students to look at the back bulletin board to “Show Me the Evidence” (which I say in a dramatic voice).  It makes me smile every time as they all whip their heads around to look at it. And then the hands start shooting up.

Right now it’s still awkward for many to use these phrases, which do not come naturally.  Some of them are, however, starting to make sense of it.

My hope is that these words will become habit and they will be able to use them naturally on their own.  Modeling goes a long way with intervention students.  It works because they see themselves being successful and they feel “smart” using words and phrases such as these. Students love to read their answers out loud when they sound “professional,” as one boy told me.

The other day our copier was broken and I was unable to copy the questions for their novel. So I quickly selected half of them, took a screen capture on SMART Notebook (one per page) and we talked about how to answer the question 1) by restating the question and 2) using some of the examples from the bulletin board.

Every student got out a sheet of notebook paper. I asked for suggestions from the class and then we selected our favorite.  I modeled it on the SMART board and they had to copy these frames.   I also posted a PDF of the pages on Schoology in case they got confused.

Stave 3 Questions Writing Frames

3 responses

  1. I love that you use some humor with your dramatic voice, and it sounds like your classroom is a fun and organized place. My one worry about all of this (and it isn’t aimed at you!) is that we are all using exactly the same phrases and exactly the same structures and exactly the same posters/anchor charts. I have noticed a dramatic decline in the creativity and intellectual curiosity of my students for the past five years (I have been teaching for about 25 years), and I wonder how much of it is tied to the rigidly structured work that all of us are doing.
    Where is the “out of the box” thinking?

    1. I agree with you, but I will say this…My class and I talked about this process last week and they said they understand the questions so much better and understand the story better (We are reading A Christmas Carol).

      I just graded their last assignment using this procedure and their responses were obviously well formed because we planned it out ahead of time. The best thing was that the majority of their answers were correct because they knew exactly what I was asking and they had some confidence to answer it and not just blow it off because they had no clue.

    2. I think you have to make it your own…with the dramatic voices and all. 😉 I really understand what you are saying and I think the underlying key is the connections and relationships and getting kids to buy what you are selling…..because they are going to need it in order to be successful in the world we are forced to live (and teach in).

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