Revisiting the Introductory Challenge


At the beginning of this unit, you were invited to challenge yourself to imagine using one of three kinds of scaffolding strategies described in the unit. Specifically, you were asked to have a particular young person in mind, whether the young person is a student or just a child or teenager you know. We asked you to think of how you could support that young person’s understanding of a reading selection by adapting a vocabulary-building, inference-building, or a use-of-text-feature scaffolding strategy to her or his interests. We included in the Introductory Challenge, a reading selection about the completion of the first railroad across the United States.


Answer the following questions about your ideas for one of the three strategies. If you are completing this unit in a workshop or class, your facilitator or instructor may ask you to share your ideas with others.

  1. Which comprehension building block did you choose to help the student with—vocabulary, inference, or knowledge of text conventions, and what influenced your choice?
  2. How did you adapt the strategy to fit the age and interests of the young person you had in mind?
  3. Does your adaptation of the strategy seem likely to enable the young person to understand the passage better than he or she would have without the scaffolding strategy?
  4. What problem or problems did you have in developing your idea?