Intra-Act is an after reading strategy that engages a group of readers in a reflective discussion. Individual readers reach personal conclusions or decisions based on their reading experience and this follow-up discussion.
According to Hoffman (1979), the Intra-Act process has four phases:
Comprehension PhaseStudents construct meaning from a text selection.
Relational PhaseStudents relate what they have learned about the topic with other texts and prior experiences.
Valuation PhaseStudents express personal feelings and value judgments about the topic.
Reflective PhaseStudents reflect on the decisions they have made and the values upon which these decisions are based.
Steps to Intra-Act:
Choose a reading selection on a controversial topic. Be sure that students can form clear and informed opinions about the topic.
Introduce the selection with a discussion of the differences between factual and opinionated information. Stress the need to defend opinions with supporting evidence.
Identify a number of opinionated statements from the reading selection. Arrange these statements on a grid (leaving space for student names) with "Yes" and "No" check boxes beside them. Distribute this handout (see below) to the class.
Divide the class into small groups. Each group first reads and summarizes the document.
Next, have members of each group respond to the value statements provided on the handouts, writing in their own names and responding "Yes" or "No" to reflect their agreement or disagreement with the statement.
Now, have students write in the names of their team members and predict how they will respond to the statements by marking the "Yes" or "No" boxes under their names.
Finally, ask group members to share their predictions inside the group. Mark correct and incorrect predictions on the grid. Engage students in a discussion of their reasons for supporting specific statements.
Hoffman, J.V. (1979). The intra-act procedure for critical reading. Journal of Reading, 22, 605-608.
Lenski, Susan D., Wham, Mary Ann, & Johns, Jerry L. (1999). Reading and learning strategies for middle and high school students. Dubuque, IA: Kendall/Hunt.