Emily Lima
During Reading Strategy

PLAN (Predict/Locate/Add/Note)

Example: Frost’s “After Apple Picking”

The PLAN (Predict/Locate/Add/Note) graphical organizer helps students summarize the content of a reading selection. This instrument incorporates a number of reading and learning strategies into a single note-taking tool.
Using the PLAN organizer students . . .

  • selection content based on prior knowledge and experiences.
  • familiar and unfamiliar words and concepts.
  • new information to prior knowledge.
  • how new information can be applied to everyday tasks.

The PLAN organizer is useful because it activates students’ prior knowledge, helps them build new knowledge onto existing schemas, and asks them to apply their knowledge in a relevant way.

Steps to PLAN

Select a reading passage with a well-defined central concept and distribute copies to students.

I distribute copies of Robert Frost’s poem “After Apple Picking.”

Have students quickly scan the document and make predictions about its content from titles and key words.

Students scan the poem and come up with predictions. Examples of some possible predictions include: “the poem has to do with winter, apples, dreaming, and sleep.”

Provide students with a graphical organizer (like the one below) and ask them to create a "map" of their predictions. The top of the map should contain a prediction of the overall content of the document. Each "arm" of the map should contain predictions about specific content items and "evidence" supporting these predictions (key words or phrases from the selection).

I pass out the graphic organizer. Each student creates a map. Example of one student’s map could be: the main prediction is “apple picking” and three “arms” are “winter,” “sleep,” and “dreaming.” The student provides specific lines of the poem where these predictions are evident.


Have students place an identification mark (an asterisk or question mark) by any unfamilar or unknown information listed in their predictions. At this point, the "map" should clearly distinguish between known and unknown information.

Students put question marks on their maps next to information they are unfamiliar with.

Next, have students carefully read the selection and evaluate their predictions. Students should "adjust" their "map" to better reflect their close reading of the document. Special care should be taken to add new information learned while reading.

Students read “After Apple Picking.” They evaluate each prediction, and, if necessary, add new information to either support or revise their original predictions.

Finally, challenge the students to describe specific applications for this newly gathered information in "real world" tasks.

Teacher-led class discussion on how this new information can be applied in the real world.

(Activity adapted from __http://www.justreadnow.com/strategies/plan.htm__)