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Robyn Webb

Assessment #3
After Reading
Once Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey
Somebody Wanted But So

An after reading assessment designed to help 12th grade students in a US
literature and composition class with Ken Kesey’s One Flew Over the
Cuckoo’s Nest is a Somebody Wanted But So graphic organizer. This strategy
is outlined by Kathleen Beers in her book, When Kids Can’t Read What
Teachers Can Do (2003) who states, “SWBS offers students a framework as
they create their summaries,” because summarizing as a whole may appear
too overwhelming for many students (145). SWBS is used to help students
break down the complexity of any written work and to move beyond
summary writing. The Somebody column is used for students to look at the
characters and to determine which ones are the main characters within the
text. Wanted is to look at the events of the plot and immediately talk about
main ideas and details. In the But column, students are examining the
conflict and in the So column, they are looking for those resolutions. With
these four components, students should be able to determine what the
driving forces were for various characters in the novel.

Colorado Academic Standards, 12th Grade:
Reading, Writing, and Communicating
Standard 2: Reading for All Purposes
Literacy skills are essential for students to fully participate in and expand
their understanding of today’s global society. Whether they are reading
functional texts (voting ballots, a map, a train schedule, a driver’s test, a job
application, a text message, product labels); reference materials (textbooks,

technical manuals, electronic media); or print and non-print literary texts,
students need reading skills to fully manage, evaluate, and use the myriad
information available in their day-to-day lives.

Grade Level Expectations:
Standard 2.1: Literary criticism of complex texts requires the use of
analysis, interpretive, and evaluative strategies
a. Analyze how an author’s choices concerning how to structure
specific parts of a text (e.g., the choice of where to begin or end a
story, the choice to provide a comedic or tragic resolution) contribute
to its overall structure and meaning as well as its aesthetic impact.
(CCSS: RL.11-12.5)
c. Evaluate the influence of historical context on the form, style, and
point of view of a written work
e. Evaluate how literary components impact meaning (such as tone,
symbolism, irony, extended metaphor, satire, hyperbole)
Through the SWBS graphic organizer, students will compartmentalize
characters and key events to determine how they are interconnected.
Students will have to take the novel as a whole to determine what a
character wanted, what the conflict was, and what ultimately happened.
They will have to look at literary components, to get a better idea of what
factors were driving the characters in the novel.

Reading Focus:
How does the Somebody Wanted But So graphic organizer assess students?
SWBS is a summary of the novel in chart form. In order for students to be
able to fill it out completely, they will have had to read One Flew Over the
Cuckoo’s Nest and be able to interpret and evaluate the novel in its entirety.
While this graphic organizer is a summary, it is not asking for basic recall. It
is asking for students to go deeper into the text and determine which actions

of the characters caused them to have conflict and then a resolution.
Students will be required to have at least five characters in their charts.
The 2014 test results released by the Colorado Department of Education
shows that only 68.11% of 10th grade students scored in the “proficient” or
“advanced” ranges for the reading category at Fort Collins High School. This
means that over one-fourth of the student body cannot be considered as
having “mastered” the concepts they were supposed to have by completion
of 10th grade. While that may seem pretty high only, only 38.5% of 10th grade
students demonstrated college readiness. In total, there were 370 10th
graders who took the exams, so 228 students who are two years away from
graduation, are not prepared for college. There is a continued need for
increasing reading proficiency in secondary students not only for the
standardized testing statistics, but for our students to be well-informed
members of society (Novey & “Fort Collins”).
This reading strategy increases a student’s ability to think critically. This
information about characters is not explicitly, so students have to infer in
order to fill out the chart. Students will take context clues from the book in
order to determine what the subject wanted, what the conflict was, and what
ultimately happened. This is going beyond basic memory questions and is
asking students to interpret the text.

Instructional Strategies
This would take place on a Friday, when classes are 45 minutes long and we
have finished One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. I will tell students that we
are going to do a summary strategy that involves a close look at individual
characters and the ways in which they drove the plot. Students will complete
a Somebody Wanted But So graphic organization in preparation for a
summary quiz they will be having on Monday. The only different is that they
will have to write the quiz in paragraph form instead of in a chart. By having

them summarize the information in paragraph form, I can check their ability
to synthesize information, such as the standard states above.
15 minutes: When students walk into class, I’m going to have a blank
Somebody Wanted But So chart on the board. I’m going to explain that
we will be creating summaries through characterization charts,
allowing us to look at the novel in different sections, instead of taking it
as a whole. By this point, we have finished the novel and we all know
what happened at the end (with Randle being killed by Chief Bromden,
who then escapes the hospital). As a class, I will explain what each part
means (character, what said charated or desired, what the conflict
was, and what the resolution was). Students will be broken up into
groups of 2-3 (depending on how many people are in class) and will be
given butcher paper to complete their charts. Their task will be to pick
five characters from the novel and fill out at least three things in the
“wanted, but, so” column per character. We will looking at Randle
McMurphy together as a class and I will walk through the columns with
them, using him as an explain. However, since he is one of the main
characters and we are only filling out one reflection on him, students
may still pick him as a character and write three new sections on him.
20 minutes: Students will be given the majority of class time to work on this
project, because I want them to critically think about the novel and the
role characters play within it. This is the only sort of summary work we
will be doing, so I want them to take it seriously. Students will also
have to keep in mind that they will be taking a quiz on the characters
the following Monday, so the more work they put into this now, the
easier it will be for them to pass. While I think an overarching summary
is important, this book is driven by its characters and the actions of the
characters (for the most part, there is only one scene, after all). So,
students need to realize what the impact is on the story by these
characters. Like the vocabulary tree, students will have to write in

different colors so that I can see the amount of participation each
student puts into the chart.
10 minutes: We will reconvene as a class and I will ask them to share some
of the major characterizations and plots they came up with from the
story. It is likely that the groups will have similar ideas, but I think it is a
good idea to share the work they spent most of class time doing. As a
whole, I want us to make connections between the characters and see
if there are cross plots between some of them (like Randle and Chief
Bromden, for instance). I also want to take this time for students to ask
questions, which I will deflate back to their peers. It is my goal to open
up a larger class discussion on this novel and to get them talking about
the major themes and concepts within it.
Sample Chart for SWBS Graphic Organizer (Students will create
their own in their notebooks or on Microsoft Excel, if they prefer)



Randle McMurphy

To push Nurse
Ratched to her
breaking point, to
see her when she
loses control

She has power
over when he is
going to be
released mental

He decides that
the only way he is
going to get out
of there is if he
breaks out of
there himself.

Nurse Ratched
Chief Bromden
Dale Harding
Billy Bibbit

Assessment and Assessment Tools
I am a strong believer in collaborative assignments in-class, because
students will need to know how to work with other people for the rest of their
lives. I want them to feel comfortable working with their classmates and
communicating with everyone in the room, so that when they go into the real
world, they are familiar with working with different people.

Students will be given participation grades for their involvement in the
creation of their graphic organizers. Students will also be graded on the
depth of their graphic organizers. If they quickly fill out their graphic
organization for the sake of being done, they will receive a lower grade on it.
On Monday, they will also be given a quiz, which they will know about the
day they complete their graphic organizers; however, they will need to turn
their SWBS charts in by the end of the class period on Friday, so it will be in
their best interest to pay attention and work together as a team. Their quiz
will require that they write on paragraph each about two characters. They
will be graded on a simple rubric, of whether they followed the same
guidelines from the graphic organizer or not. Students will be marked down if
they did not write in paragraph form or if they write in incomplete sentences.


I correctly identified a
character from the
I identified what my
character wanted within
the novel
I identified what conflict
was preventing my
character from reaching
his/her goal
I identified what the
resolution was the
character had

I did not correctly
identify a character
from the novel
I did not (correctly)
identify what my
character wanted
I not identify what
conflict was preventing
my character from
reaching his/her goal
I did not identify what
the resolution was the
character had

Research Base
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest has a lot of characters and even I had a
different time keeping them all straight. As I read this book, I actually kept a
list running of who everyone was and the different nicknames he/she might
had been called by. Each character is doing something different and
important for the driving of the plot and it is important to spend time
discussing what that is exactly. This chart will be a great way for students to
get a summary of the book in a creative way, while also digging deeper into

each of the character. This overall concept (Somebody Wanted But So [144])
was adapted from Kylene Beers and her text, When Kids Can’t Read What
Teachers Can Do. Beers states that this graphic organizer goes beyond
summary writing and helps focus students as they look at individual
characters. This strategy “not only provides a scaffold for writing summaries,
it also helps students to identify main ideas and details, recognize cause an
effect relationships, make generalizations, identify character differences, and
understand how shifting the point of view emphasizes different aspects of
the story” (149). Strategies are especially effective when they are engaging
for the students and help them get so much out of the work, even when they
are only filling out a chart on the characters.

Beers, Kylene. When Kids Can't Read, What Teachers Can Do: A Guide for
Teachers, 6-12. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, 2003. Print.
"Fort Collins High School Test Scores." US News. U.S.News & World Report
Education, n.d. Web. 18 Mar. 2015.
Kesey, Ken. One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest. New York: Viking, 1962. Print.
Novey, Madeline. "PSD Students Outpacing Statewide Peers on
Assessments." Coloradoan. The Coloradoan, Aug. 2014. Web. 18 Mar.