HOTS: Higher Order Thinking Skills – Understanding Literature

HOTS

1.   Comparing and contrasting

2.   Distinguishing different perspectives

3.   Explaining cause and effect

4.   Explaining patterns

5.   Inferring

6.   Uncovering motives 

LOTS: Lower-Order Thinking Skills

Thinking Skill

Students will be able to:

Sample Tasks/Questions

Recognizing key vocabulary, setting, characters and events in the text

relate to the literal meaning of the text.

Who? What? Where? When?
Do you know…? Can you identify…?

Higher-Order Thinking Skills

Thinking Skill

Students will be able to:

Sample Tasks/Questions

Classifying

categorize the elements of the text according to criteria.

Categorize the characters according to their relationships/values.

Comparing and contrasting

find similarities (comparing) and differences (contrasting) and draw conclusions when appropriate.

  • Compare and contrast the conflicts/ problems/dilemmas in two stories or poems.
  • Compare and contrast the text and the film.
  • Compare and contrast characters in a text.

Distinguishing different perspectives

identify the different perspectives within the text and/or among the readers of the text.

  • Identify how different characters relate to a specific event in the story.
  • How does your understanding of thecharacters’ actions/events in the story change as you read?
  • Do you share the same perspective asthe narrator? Explain.
  • How does your understanding of thestory/the character/the scene differ from other students in your class?

Thinking Skill

Students will be able to:

Sample Tasks/Questions

Evaluating

make judgments about different aspects of the text and justify opinions.

  • What makes this a good story? Explain.
  • Is ___ a believable character? Explain.
  • Is the resolution of the conflict satisfying? Explain.

Explaining cause and effect

describe and explain the causal relationships between actions or events in a text.

  • What were the results of ___’s action?
  • What caused ___ to think that ___?

Explaining patterns

identify and explain different patterns in the text and explain their significance.

  • Explain why certain lines/phrases/words are repeated.
  • What behavior does the character repeat?

Generating possibilities

generate alternatives and/or create new ideas and/or expand on existing ideas,

Create a new character for the story and explain how s/he will affect the story.

Identifying parts and whole

explain how the parts function together within the whole text.

  • How does one part of the story contribute to your understanding of the whole text?
  • How does the title/ ending relate to different parts of the text?
 

Inferring

infer implicit meaning from the text by being able to read-between-the-lines.

  • What do you think the character meant when s/he said, “___”?
  • What does ___’s behavior suggest?
  • What different meanings can beinferred from this line in the poem?

 

Thinking Skill

Students will be able to:

Sample Tasks/Questions

Making connections

make connections between specific aspects of the text.

make connections between the text and other contexts in relation to theme, historical and cultural contexts or pertinent information from the author’s biography.

  •   How is ___’s behavior influenced by his past/home life/religion?
  •   To what extent do events in the text reflect events in the life of the author?
  •   How does your understanding of the story/the character/the scene differ when you learn about a topic related to the literary text?

Predicting

predict the content or the outcome of the text, either before or during reading based on available information.

  •   How do you think ___ will react?
  •   How do you think the story will end?

Problem solving

identify a problem/dilemma and either identify its solution in the text or suggest a possible solution, taking into account the constraints and the options present in the text.

  •   Define the problem facing the protagonist.
  •   How should ___ decide what to do?
  •   What should ____ take / have takeninto account?
  •   What dilemma does ___ face at thispoint in the story? What are possible solutions?

Sequencing

explain how the sequence of events in a text, when not in chronological order, affects understanding of the text.

  •   Sequence the events in chronological order.
  •   How do flashbacks affect your understanding of the text/plot?
  •   Why do you think the events are not in chronological order?
 Higher-Order Thinking Skills (continued)

Thinking Skill

Students will be able to:

Sample Tasks/Questions

Synthesizing

change their thinking about the text as they read.

  •   What event changed your thinking about a character’s behavior?
  •   How did what you learned at the end of the story change your understanding of ___’s actions?
  •   While reading the text, how did your understanding of the events/character’s behavior change?

Uncovering motives

identify motives that explain the character’s behavior and support this with evidence from the text.

  •   Why do you think that __ did __? Support your answer.
  •   What made ___ change his/her mind? Give supporting details.

Vocabulary for Thinking Skills

Thinking Skill

Vocabulary

Classifying

arrange, belong, categorize, category, classify, element, exclude, group, hierarchy, include, label, match, order, part of, separate, sort

Comparing and contrasting

also, although, but, compared to, different than, even though, however, in contrast with, in the same way, like, likewise, nevertheless, on the contrary, on the one hand…on the other hand, similar, similarly, still, unlike, while, yet, (comparative adjectives)

Distinguishing different perspectives

attitude, differences, however, on the one hand/on the other hand, outlook, outside/inside, perception, perspective, point of view, standpoint

Evaluating

assess, judge, judgment

Explaining cause and effect

and in order to, as a result (of), because, cause, consequence, due to, effect, encourage, end, if….then, outcome, persuade, provoke, result, thanks to

Explaining patterns

again and again, always, as a rule, consistently, on a regular basis, pattern of behavior, recur, regularly, repeat, repeatedly, repetition, similar

Identifying parts and whole

background information, belongs, breakdown, connection, divide into parts, element, item, major part of the story, missing part, part, separate, split up the story, story within a story, trigger, unity, whole

Inferring

assume, conclude, deduce, infer, read between the lines, understand

Generating possibilities

create, guess, hypothesize, imagine, make up, propose an alternative, speculate

Making connections

associated, connected, influenced, linked, related

Predicting

clue, expect, expectation, predict, suggest

Problem solving

answer, choose, crisis, difficulty, dilemma, explain, find out, options, predicament, process, resolve, solution, solve, trouble

Thinking Skill

Vocabulary

Sequencing

after, after a while, at last, before, eventually, finally, first, flashback, foreshadow, last, order, next, progression, second, sequence, series, simultaneously, subsequently, then

Synthesizing

change, integrate, thinking, understanding

Uncovering motives

aim, drive, goal, intention, motivation, motive, purpose, reason

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