Areas of Expertise


Adolescent Literacy

Reading Strategies

Strategy: Save the Last Word for Me

Short, K. G., Harste, J., & Burke, C. (1996). Creating classrooms for authors and inquirers (2nd ed.). Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann.

Web site:


  1. Students are given 3x5 note cards. It is explained that after reading an assigned passage, they are to find three to five quotations from the text that they really like.
  2. Students then read the material and write one quotation on one side of each card. On the other side, they tell why they like it.
  3. Students then share their quotations, one at a time.
  4. Fellow classmates are encouraged to comment on each quotation.
  5. Finally, the writers share their own comments from the other side of the cards.
  6. If the class size is large, this activity can be done in small groups.


The Web site noted above contains an example of Save The Last Word For Me using Wish You Well by David Baldacci.


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