Literacy Partners

The Content Share — Everything You Need to Know

The book, Don’t Forget to Share! covers four types of teaching shares — the content share, the craft share, the process share, and the progress share.

In this article, we’re going to focus on the content share.

The Content Share — What It Is

A content share is a share where you work with students on rehearsal and revision.

Before we get into this valuable practice, let’s make sure we have the logistics all sorted out.

Time: In the book, you’ll discover that this teaching share or “share conversation” needs 10-15 minutes. This may be different from what you’ve learned about teaching shares. Many of us have been telling you to give it 2-5 minutes so that you have a quick closure at the end of the workshop. I think you’ll find the idea of a 10-15 minute share conversation compelling. Hopefully compelling enough to try it yourself.

Here are some simple tips to make sure you have plenty of time to get value out of this important part of the workshop:

  • set a timer
  • get a student to remind you
  • put it in your plan book

Room Arrangement: Leah, the author of the book, also suggests the kids come back to the gathering or meeting area and sit around in a circle to create a conversation.

Set-Up: For these two types of shares you will need 1-3 students. Make sure to check with them before having them come up to share. You want to make sure they are comfortable. If they seem hesitant, you can offer to read it for them.

Steps to a Content Share:

  1. Choose 1-2 students to share their work from the day. These should be students who could use some work on rehearsing aloud and/or revising their work.
  2. Teacher says something like, “Today we’re going to hear [child’s name]’s story about [the topic of their story]. First, I’ll read their story, and then afterward, they’ll read it. That way you’ll get to hear the story twice. After we hear it, we’ll make sure we understand it by retelling it. If there is anything you’re wondering about their story, just ask. I’m sure they’ll be happy to help!”
  3. Teacher reads the writing aloud.
  4. Student reads the writing aloud.
  5. Kids retell what they heard to make sure they got it right.
  6. Kids have a chance to ask questions about things they are wondering — this promotes revision!
  7. Sometimes if there’s time, kids can have an opportunity to make a plan for how this will impact their own work. They can jot on a sticky note, or just get to making those revisions for the last few minutes at the gathering area.

When should you do a content share? 

There are a few times that work really well for a content share. The best times to do this type of share are:

  • At the start of the year.
  • During a revision unit of study (or the revision phase of a unit of study).
  • At the same time you teach students to question the texts they read during reading workshop.

Which kids benefit the most from a content share? 

We love the content share because it’s helpful for all students. It will help students find ways to both celebrate the work they’ve done and feel more confident with how to revise their writing for an audience. Kids who will benefit the most are the ones who typically resist revision and the ones who don’t often pause to question the texts they read.

We think you’re going to make some interesting discoveries with these deeper conversations inside the content share. If you have questions about implementing this or need some support getting started, get in touch! 

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