The Chart in Practice
Using the KWL chart, the student will read through the chapter headings, captions for pictures, and any highlighted vocabulary words. The headings in the KWL chart stand for:
K: What I already know. This is where the student will list if there is anything in the chapter that they are familiar with. It can be a name they recognize, a vocabulary word, or a topic.
W: What I want to know. Here, the student will list any information that they want to learn more about. Maybe there is a photo that interests them, or a particular vocabulary word. If the chapter is about an individual, they may want to learn more about why this person is important.
L: What I learned. This will be completed when you are done discussing the chapter or section. Here, the student will list what they learned.
With each, you may want to give them guidelines or goals about how much to write for each section. Maybe ask for at least two citations for the W and L column, and maybe try for at least one in the K column. If possible, have each student copy the table into a notebook so that they can go back to complete the L column when the chapter is completed. Then it is also there for them to study when the chapter is completed. You may also request that they use a small three ring binder or a folder with prongs so that you can three-hole punch the tables you give them and they can be saved this way.