If you are not familiar with Wordle, it is a website which will take a reading passage and then based on word frequency, it will create a word cloud, showing which words are used more often than others - the bigger the size of the word, the more frequently the word is used.
This particular activity is something which you will want to do just prior to reading a story for the first time, because students will be predicting what they think the story will be about based on the words which they see. As a result, you as the teacher will have needed to preview any new vocabulary/language structures through other prereading activities.
- Cut/paste a 5-6 sentences from the reading onto the Wordle website.
- Create a word cloud using Wordle.
- Save the image and paste onto a document
- Project the word cloud onto the board and based on the words in the word cloud, ask students to predict what they think the story is going to be about. I ask students to create sentences in Latin. This is why students need to know already the vocabulary/language structures in the story.
- Students really do like to predict what they think they the story will be about.
- Because students have predicted the plot of the story, they have a more vested interest in what they are reading, as they are mentally comparing their version with the actual story
- After reading the story, I have actually had students say, "I like my version so much better than the real one." Many times, I will make a mental note of what they thought the plot to be and will write an alternate version of the story which incorporates their plot for them to read later.