Dialectical Journals

What are Dialectical Journals?
~They are a double-entry not- taking process. It provides two columns which are in dialogue with one another, not only developing a method of critical reading but also encourageing habits of reflective questioning.

Why is this style of notetaking helpful to our reading?
In the right-hand column, we "own" the new facts by putting them in our own words or by raising our own questions. By keeping a dialectival journal, we begain to think for ourselves about a text, and practice our thinking skills in general.

Guidelines
• you will be writing 25 entries in your dialectical journal over the course of reading a novel
• you will need to have two columns. The left column is used for traditional note forms of direct quotations and citations or summaries. The right column is used for commenting on the left-column notes. As you take notes, regularly re-read previous pages of notes and comments, drawing any new connections in a right-column summary before starting another page of note-taking/note-making.

Need help comming up with things to write about?
summarize sections of the text to keep your mind focused on what you have read.
Make predictions and ask questions about what you don't understand.
Write notes about your thoughts and reflections.
write down any confusing or unknown vocabulary.
write down information that you consider important to the understanding of the story.

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