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Index
Name ______________________________________ Date _______________________

Says/Does Notes
Todays Key Idea: Good readers unlock the message or ideas of a text by
analyzing text structure, literary devices and specific wordsthis process is called
Says/Does.

1. You already know how to do the first step called SAYS


In the Lower School, you practiced finding the main idea of a text. You
were figuring out what the text or author literally says.
Example: Illegally downloading music may be easy, but it comes at a
severe cost. It ruins our societys artists and musicians.
In my own words, the author is SAYING that
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2. This year, we will focus on the second, more difficult step
called DOES
In order to figure out the message of a text, good readers analyze what
the author DOES (what text structures, literary devices and
specific words DOES the author use)?

Stanzas?
Interesting punctuation?
Imagery?
Figurative language?
Mostly negative words? Mostly positive?

How do these things help convey the message of a text?


Example: Illegally downloading music may be easy, but it comes at a
severe cost. It ruins our societys artists and musicians.
In this example, the author uses
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to convey the message that


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Says/Does with Poetry
STEP 1: Read the poem straight through.

If You Catch a Firef

By Lilian Moore

If you catch a firefly


and keep it in a jar
You may find that
you have lost
A tiny star.
If you let it go then,
back into the night,
You may see it
once again
Star bright.
Lilian Moore, If You Catch a Firefly from I Feel the Same Way (New York: Atheneum, 1967).

STEP 2: Read it a second time, summarizing each stanza.


What is the author/author literally SAYING?
STEP 3: Read it a third time, paying attention to interesting text
structures, literary devices and words. Look at the first and last lines of
each stanza.
What is the author DOING with these text structures,
devices and words? What effect do these things have on the
poems meaning?

HINT: A theme can be if you love something, set it free.


How is this theme show through text structure, literary
devices and words?

If You Catch a
Firef

What the passage


SAYS:

What the author/text


DOES:

By Lilian Moore
The author uses

If you catch a firefly


and keep it in a jar
You may find that
you have lost
A tiny star.

If you let it go then,


back into the
night,
You may see it
once again
Star bright.

Your Turn!
STEP 1: Read the poem straight through.
STEP 2: Read it a second time, summarizing each stanza.
What is the author/author literally SAYING?
STEP 3: Read it a third time, paying attention to interesting text structures,
literary devices and words. Look at the first and last lines of each stanza.
What is the author DOING with these text structures, devices and
words? What effect do these things have on the poems meaning?

Wash Day from The Color of My Words


Stanza 1
1.
2.
3.
4.

Saturday is wash day for Mami and me


down by the river that flows to the sea.
We carry the baskets high on our hips.
We juggle the soap, the scrub board, and clips.

Stanza 2
5.
6.
7.
8.

Our friends wave hola as we slippery-slide


On river-age stones to the other side.
Where sun rays glimmer on a whisper of shade.
And Mami and me tie our hair up in braids.

Stanza 3
9.
10.
11.

Then WHACK! I smack the clothes on the rocks


to scare out all dirt and grassy spots.
Mami scrubs them up and down,
4

12.

and we both swirl them round and round.

Stanza 4
13.
14.
15.
16.

Sparkling white, and river clean


the clothes smell like fresh-air dreams.
We clip them safe to bushes and trees
to dry in the sun and flap in the breeze.

Stanza 5
17.
18.
19.
20.

Later, under the moons blue light


Mami and me smooth the wrinkled clothes right.
We fold them into neat little squares.
And take them back home for all to wear.
Complete Says/Does on next page

Stanza
1

What the text SAYS:

What the author/text DOES:


The author uses

in
pairs

2
in
pairs

3
on
your
own

4
on
your
own

5
on
your
own

Name __________________________________________ Advisory_______________

Exit Slip: Says/Does


1. Write a summary of stanza 4 of the Wash Day poem (you can use your
notes). Answer in complete sentences.
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2. In stanza 2 of Wash Day, what is the author doing (what text structures,
literary devices or words is the author using?) Be specific with at least two
examples! Answer in complete sentences.
_________________________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________________

Name __________________________________________ Advisory_______________

Exit Slip: Says/Does


1. Write a summary of stanza 4 of the Wash Day poem (you can use your
notes). Answer in complete sentences.

#
_________________________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________________
2. In stanza 2 of Wash Day, what is the author doing (what text structures,
literary devices or words is the author using?) Be specific with at least two
examples! Answer in complete sentences.
_________________________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________________

Name _________________________________________________________
Advisory______________________ Date ___________________________

Reading Homework: Says/Does Practice


STEP 1: Read the poem straight through.
STEP 2: Read it a second time, summarizing each stanza.
What is the author/author literally SAYING?
STEP 3: Read it a third time, paying attention to interesting text
structures, literary devices and words. Look at the first and last lines of
each stanza.
What is the author DOING with these text structures,
devices and words? What effect do these things have on the
poems meaning?

Words (from The Color of My Words, chapter 2)


May I have some paper, please
Please, may I have some paper
Cause these words of mine
go walk away
they go walk away all by themselves
and get lost in the crowd.
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May I have some paper, please


Please, may I have some paper
To catch these words
and wrap them up
where they cant walk away
slip off the edge
and drown.
Words (from The Color of My Words, chapter 2)

May I have some paper, please


Please, may I have some paper
Cause these words of mine
go walk away
they go walk away all by themselves
and get lost in the crowd.
May I have some paper, please
Please, may I have some paper
To catch these words
and wrap them up
where they cant walk away
slip off the edge
and drown.
Stanza

What is the text SAYING?

What is the author/text DOING?


Why?

#
1

The author uses

The author uses

3. What is the message/theme of this poem? (HINT: Use your chart above).
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_________________________________________________________________________________
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Name _________________________________________________________
Advisory______________________ Date ___________________________

Reading Homework: Says/Does Practice*


STEP 1: Read the poem straight through.
STEP 2: Read it a second time, summarizing each stanza.
What is the author/author literally SAYING?
STEP 3: Read it a third time, paying attention to interesting text
structures, literary devices and words. Look at the first and last lines of
each stanza.
What is the author DOING with these text structures,
devices and words? What effect do these things have on the
poems meaning?

10

Words (from The Color of My Words, chapter 2)


May I have some paper, please
Please, may I have some paper
Cause these words of mine
go walk away
they go walk away all by themselves
and get lost in the crowd.
May I have some paper, please
Please, may I have some paper
To catch these words
and wrap them up
where they cant walk away
slip off the edge
and drown.
POETIC DEVICE WORD BANK:
Personification (when an object is given human qualities)
Simile (a comparison of 2 unlike things using like or
as)
Metaphor (a comparison of 2 unlike things)
Repetition (when the same word or sound is repeated)
Rhyme (when the last sounds of two lines sound alike)
Passage/Line

What is the text


SAYING?

What is the author/text


DOING? Why?

Summarize the stanza.

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1
2
3
4
5
6

May I have some paper,


please
Please, may I have some
paper
Cause these words of mine
go walk away
they go walk away all by
themselves
and get lost in the crowd.

The poet uses


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to
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________________________________
The poet uses
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to
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________________________________

7
8
9
10
11
12
13

May I have some paper,


please
Please, may I have some
paper
To catch these words
and wrap them up
where they cant walk away
slip off the edge
and drown.

The poet uses


___________________
to
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________________________________
________________________________

3. What is the message/theme of this poem? (HINT: Use your chart above). The
poet is trying to say that
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__________________________________________________________

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