Shared Devices

4 Class Periods with ThinkCERCA

This video will guide you through using ThinkCERCA across four sessions.


Session 1

Introduce or review a key skill or concept using a Direct Instruction lesson. Using a smartboard or projector, watch the lesson as a whole group, pausing frequently to elaborate or expand upon the skills and concepts and being taught.

At the end of this Direct Instruction lesson, have students answer the five multiple choice items as a comprehension check. Ask them to rotate through available computers, spending 5 to 10 minutes to answer the comprehension check.

While students are waiting to access computers, have them write a summary of the Direct Instruction lesson to solidify their learning.

Session 2

In Session 2, students will begin working on the Writing Lesson that corresponds to the Direct Instruction lesson they completed in Session 1. To get started, review the topic and Class Discussion Question from the Writing Module.

Have students write down on a piece of paper a response to the short answer prompt in Step 1 of the Writing Lesson (projected on the screen). Their answers can be referenced later when writing their formal essay in Step 6.

Next, ask students to break up into five stations for the following activities. (Tip: If possible, set stations up before class to save time.)

  • Close Reading Station (online) – Students complete Steps 2-3 of the Writing Lesson independently on devices (connecting with, reading, and engaging with the text).

  • Writing Station (online) – Students complete Steps 4-5 of the Writing Lesson independently on devices (summarizing the text and outlining their essay using our Argument Builder tool).

  • Vocabulary Practice Station (offline) – Students work on vocabulary from the lesson using an activity from ThinkCERCA’s Vocabulary Routines resource.

  • Socratic Discussion Station (offline) – Students engage in a student-led Socratic discussion using the Class Discussion Question from the Writing Module.

  • Teacher-Led Skill Review Station (offline) – Facilitate a review of a skill or concept that you would like students to focus on. Reference ThinkCERCA’s Direct Instruction lessons for ideas and support.

Have students rotate through 2-3 stations in Session 2 (20 to 25 minutes each).

Session 3

Set up the same stations from Session 2 and have students rotate through the ones they have not completed. Each station should take 20 to 25 minutes.

Session 4

In this final session, ask students to complete Step 6—writing their CERCA essay. Show exemplars and set expectations so students know exactly what you are looking for. This step can be completed online or offline with paper and pencil. Circulate around the room to provide each student with additional support. Consider giving students additional time at home to finalize their essay.