Showing posts with label nonfiction reading. Show all posts
Showing posts with label nonfiction reading. Show all posts

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Fourth Grade Close Reading Lesson Plan

Title: Close Reading of Informational Text


RI4.1 Refer to details and examples in a text when explicitly explaining text and when drawing inferences
RI4.2: Determine the main idea from text and explain how it's supported by key details; summarize text
RI4.4: Determine the meaning of general academic and domain-specific words or phrases in the text
RI4.5: Deseribe the overall structure of information in a text (chronological, compare/contrast, cause/effect, problem/solution)

Learning Target

Students will determine the theme or main idea of the text by summarizing gist of article as demonstrated by participation in a close reading activity.


Materials: Paper, pencils, post-it notes for students, poster paper, markers for teacher, ELMO

Engagement Strategies

Students will read informational article
Students will annotate article
Students will pair share with left/right partners


1. Teacher shares that class will be completing a close reading selection in order to help them understand what they are reading and be able to ask questions about it (setting the purpose). He will also introduce the title (and author) of reading selection. Tiger Tale  or

2. Teacher refers to learning target above.
3. Teacher instructs students to read article to get familiar with it.
4. Teacher allows five minutes for students to red the article. Teacher observes students by circulating around the room.
5. Teacher explains the pair/share grouping with their A/B partners to discuss the main idea of the article with four details. Check for understanding by questioning.
6. Teacher initiates discussion to get students motivated to talk about reading selection. Students follow, speaking when called upon using fairness cards.
7. Teacher announces that student will read the selection one more time, but in a different way, so they can remember the important points of the reading. Teacher instructs and models to students how to annotate by thinking aloud when writing on the selection under the Elmo, demonstrating a few annotations (one key detail, one confusing word and one question) he would make.
8. Students read the selection once more but this time with a pencil, annotating (making notes) on their article by writing on it. These annotations are required to include one key detail, one confusing word and one question about the reading selection. The teacher will repeat the directions and ask questions to check for understanding, then students will read for 6 min.
9. After allotted time, teacher instructs students to pair-share with their table partners what they wrote down.
10. Teacher instructs in learning strategies context/dictionary/oral for defining unknown words.
11. Teacher uses fairness cards to ask students to share their key details, confusing words or phrases and unanswered questions with the class. Teacher writes down a few examples of each while students share their findings.
12. Teachers defines author's purpose and reading selection organization (chronological, compare/contrast, cause/effect, problem solution)
13. Teacher instructs students to do a third reading in which students search for the author's purpose and determine text structure.
14. Teacher allots five minutes for students for students to "dig deeper" by finding the reading selection's purpose and organization. Teacher circulates around room for informal observation.
15. Teacher instructs students to pair-share with left/right partner or table what the author's purpose and text structure is for the article.
16. Teacher uses fairness cards to ask students to share what their partner/group has discussed and writes down each students response to come up with a general statement about purpose and organization.
17. Teacher reviews how to make text-to-self and text-to-world connections by thinking aloud to model each connection from article.
18. Students are directed to read article one more time to make text to self and text to world connections.
19. Teacher instructs students to pair-share with their right/left partners their connections.
20. Teacher uses fairness sticks to have students share their connections with class. Teacher writes connections on white board.


Teacher asks class to hold up fingers to rate their opinions of the article, using a rubric scale of 1-4, with four being very good.


Repeat lesson with new article, allowing for more guided and independent practice. Mini lessons on context clues, text structure, main idea and details.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Common Core Nonfiction--Hurricanes, Tornados and Tropical Storms

As you might have heard the emphasis of common core is nonfiction, that is the standards address the fact that students will be reading more nonfiction titles than fiction ones.

A popular and relevant nonfiction topic would be hurricanes and tornadoes--popular because the topic is one that generates a high interest level among students and relevant because of the increased activity of these storms in the United States. The conversation is bound to come up whether you are covering them in the curriculum or not. A lesson about these storms is a must.

The first consideration you will want to keep in mind is why these two types of storms are paired together. When students learn about hurricanes and tornadoes at the same time, they get the opportunity to compare and contrast these two types of tumultuous weather events that subtly contrast each other at the same time as having many characteristics in common.

From there, students will have the opportunity to write a compare/contrast essay, an essential skill they'll need when they graduate from high school, and that's what the Common Core are all about--preparing students for the future whether it be a career or college.

When students finish reading a selection about this topic, say, for instance, Tornados and Hurricanes (Cy Armour, 2011, Time for Kids) they can complete a double bubble thinking map (Venn diagram) as the first step of the writing process. Three more lessons can follow: writing an outline, writing the rough draft from an outline, revising and editing.