November 11, 2014

Tried It Tuesday: Spotlight on Text Evidence

I can not believe it's been more than four months since I've joined Holly from Fourth Grade Flipper for...

I saw these goofy little finger flashlights on Amazon several months ago. It was one of those "customers who purchased this item also purchased these items" ads that appear near the bottom of your order page...

... and I thought, "Why not?" I purchased a pack of 40 lights for under five dollars (they have since increased in price.) The box arrived and I examined them, thought they were cute, took them to school, and left them on the shelf... until last Friday.

I'm not sure what made me remember the little dazzlers, but I'm VERY glad that I did. 

My fifth grade language arts students are not the most motivated when it comes to close reading, returning to the text to locate specific details to support their responses to questions. They prefer to remember the answer... sigh! We have been learning how to operate in Literature Circles, a strategy that demands close reading and text engagement. My kiddos have been balking at returning to the text during their circle discussions. They needed some encouragement and more guided practice. 

TA DA... enter, stage right... Spotlight on Text Evidence!

I passed out the finger flashlights amid whispers, giggles, and funny looks. I explained how to use the little lights, turning them on and off and putting them correctly on a finger. Next I posed a "big idea" question to my fifth graders about the book we are currently reading in class and stated that they were to spotlight a piece of text that would support an answer to the question. Every student went in search of an answer in the text and not just from their memory! 

Sure wish I had thought of these little miracle lights sooner. Such a simple, yet very effective teaching aid. You can bet we will be using them again and again to spotlight text evidence!

Don't forget to stop by Fourth Grade Flipper to read more Tried It Tuesdays. There are always great and unique ideas shared by teacher bloggers found there.


  1. We have those exact ones that I use for Flashlight Friday. LOVE!

  2. This is such an engaging idea!!! Love it. I am going to go pick some of these little lights up! Teaching Science With Lynda

  3. I love this Angela! Those little flashlights I have noticed on blogs but can't find them around here. I'm sure I could use them for math too. Thanks so much for linking up, friend!
    Fourth Grade Flipper


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