About the Book
Text Type: Nonfiction/Informational
Page Count: 14
Word Count: 263
Animals, Animals introduces students to several unique animals in our world and interesting facts about each one. Pictures of each animal support the text.
About the Lesson
Targeted Reading Strategy
- Connect to prior knowledge
- Use the reading strategy of connecting to prior knowledge to make sense of text
- Identify details in text
- Manipulate final sounds
- Read words with ee and ea vowel digraphs
- Recognize and understand the use of commas
- Place words in alphabetical order
- Book -- Animals, Animals (copy for each student)
- Chalkboard or dry erase board
- Identify details, long /e/ digraphs, alphabetical order worksheets
- Word journal (optional)
Indicates an opportunity for student to mark in the book. (All activities may be completed with paper and pencil if books are reusable.)
- High-frequency words: very, live
- Content words: elk, antlers, wildcats, burrow, badger, puma, panther, eland, bison, camel, snow leopard, kangaroo, pouch, hippopotamus, polar bear
- Ask students if they have ever been to a zoo or wild animal park. Invite them to tell about the kinds of animals they saw. Ask them to share what the animals looked like, where they were from, and what kinds of food they eat.
Introduce the Book
- Show students the front and back covers of the book and read the title with them. Ask what they might read about in a book called Animals, Animals. (Accept any answers students can justify.)
- Show students the title page. Discuss the information on the page (title of book, author's name).
Introduce the Reading Strategy: Connect to prior knowledge
- Explain to students that good readers make connections between what they already know and new information they read. Remind students that thinking about what they already know about the topic of the book will help them understand what they read.
- Model connecting to prior knowledge using the information on the covers.
Think-aloud: As I look at the front cover of this book, I see an animal climbing on a tree trunk. It has a long tail, and its fur is covered with black spots. It has whiskers and pointed teeth like a cat. However, this animal is too big to be the kind of cat that people have as a pet. It must be a wild animal. I know that leopards are wild animals that look like large cats. The animal in the picture might be a leopard. I will think about what I know about animals as I read this book. This will help me understand the book and it might also help me read some new words.
- Have students preview the pictures on the covers and title page in the book. Invite them to share how they connected to prior knowledge.
- As students read, encourage them to use other reading strategies in addition to the targeted strategy presented in this section. For tips on additional reading strategies, click here.
Introduce the Vocabulary
- As you preview the book, ask students to talk about what they see in the illustrations and use the vocabulary they will encounter in the text. Model how to use what they know about various animals as they preview the illustrations. For example, on page 3 you might say: The antlers on the elk remind me of large antlers on a deer.
- Model for students the strategies they can use to say difficult words. For example, point to the word antlers on page 3. Model using the familiar word part ant and the picture to read the word. Then read the sentence to students, and ask whether or not the word antlers makes sense.
- For additional teaching tips on teaching high-frequency words and word-attack strategies, click here.
Set the Purpose
- Have students read the book to find out about different animals. Remind them to think about what they already know about animals as they read, such as where they live and what they eat.
- Guide the reading: Give students their copy of the book. Ask them to place a finger on the page number at the bottom corner of the page. Have them read to the end of page 6, using their finger to point to each word as they read. Encourage students who finish before others to reread the text.
- Model connecting to prior knowledge.
Think-aloud: When I read page 3, I saw a picture of an animal with that looked like a deer. I have seen deer before and I know that some deer have large antlers on their head. Using what I already know helped me read the word antlers. If I didn't already know about antlers, it might have been harder for me to understand that part of the book.
- Invite students to share how they connected with that they already know as they read.
- Have students read the remainder of the book. Remind them to use what they already know about animals to help them understand new information as they read.
Have students make a small question mark in their book beside any word they do not understand or cannot pronounce. These can be addressed in the discussion that follows.
Reflect on the Reading Strategy
- Ask students what words, if any, they marked in their book. Use this opportunity to model how they can read these words using decoding strategies and context clues.
- Think-aloud: On page 10, I saw a picture of an animal sitting in the grass. It had a long tail and nose like a dog. However, the name of the animal started with the /f/ sound. So far, the book has been about animals that live in the wild. I know that a fox is a wild animal that also looks like a dog. Using what I know about animals helped me to read this page.
- Discuss with students how using what they already know about animals helped them to understand what they read. Invite them to share how they connected to prior knowledge as they read.
- Discuss additional strategies students used to gain meaning from the book.
Teach the Comprehension Skill: Identify details
- Discussion: Ask students which animals they were already familiar with in the book. Invite them to share something they already knew about the animal(s) and something new that they learned. Ask if they thought about other animals as they read the book.
- Introduce and model the skill: Explain to students that they can organize information they read. Draw a copy of the identify details worksheet on the board. Ask students to tell the names of the animals in the book. List these animals in the first column. Model identifying details about the elk.
- Think-aloud: The first animal I read about was the elk. I read that elk are excellent swimmers and can run very fast, and that males have large antlers. I will write elk in the column under the heading Animal and swimmers, runner, and large antlers under the heading Detail.
- Check for understanding: Have students identify details about wildcats in the book. Have them write at least two details about wildcats on their worksheet. When they have finished, discuss their answers.
- Independent practice: Introduce, explain, and have students complete the identify details worksheet. If time allows, discuss their answers.
Phonological Awareness: Manipulate final sounds
- Say the words hunt and ant without the final sound in each word: hun, an. Ask students to say the words hunt and ant, and then say each word without the final sound. Ask them which sound is missing (the /t/ sound).
- Say the following words to students: fast, trunk, land, drink, hump, stand, plant. Pause after saying each word and have students say each word without the final sound.
- Have students say the word cat. Then have them change the final sound to /p/ and say the new word (cap). Have them change the final sound in the word cap to /b/ and say the new word (cab).
Phonics: Long /e/ vowel digraphs
- Write the words tree and eat on the board. Have students find the words on page 4 and 5 and read the sentences in which they are found.
- Ask students what vowel sounds they hear in the words (long /e/). Circle the ee letter combination in tree and the ea letter combination in eat. Explain that when these vowels appear together in a word, they usually represent long /e/ sound.
- Have students look on page 5 to find another word with the long /e/ sound represented by two vowels (mean).
- Write the words sheep and seal on the board. Have a volunteer come to the board and circle the vowel digraph in each word. Have students say each word and then say the sound of the circled letter combination.
- Independent practice: Introduce, explain, and have students complete the long /e/ digraphs worksheet. If time allows, discuss their answers.
Grammar and Mechanics: Commas
- Review or explain that commas are often used to separate items in a list. Explain that readers briefly pause when they read a comma.
- Have students turn to page 4 and read the last sentence. Point out how a comma appears after each item in the list.
- Write the following sentence on the board, leaving out the commas: I put on my socks pants and shirt. Have volunteers come to the board and add the commas in the appropriate places.
- Write the following words on the board: apples, oranges, grapes. Have students use the words in a sentence with commas on a separate piece of paper.
Word Work: Alphabetical order
- Write the words puma and camel on the board. Underline the first letter in each word. Ask students which letter comes first in the alphabet: p or e.
- Review or explain that words are sometimes placed in a list by ABC, or alphabetical, order. Words are placed in alphabetical order by looking first at the initial letter in each word and deciding which letter comes first in the alphabet. Explain that elk would come first in an alphabetical list.
- Write the words elk and camel on the board. Underline the first letter in each word. Ask students which letter comes first in the alphabet: e or c. Explain that camel would come first in an alphabetical list.
- Independent practice: Introduce, explain, and have students complete the alphabetical order worksheet. If time allows, discuss their answers.
- Allow students to read their book independently. Additionally, partners can take turns reading parts of the book to each other.
- Give students their book to take home to read with parents, caregivers, siblings, or friends.
Extend the Reading
Writing and Art Connection
Have students draw a picture of their favorite wild animal (from the book or another source they have observed or studied). Have them write a few sentences explaining why the animal is their favorite. Then have them share their picture and sentences with the group.
Have students select an animal to research with a partner. Have them create a poster that includes a picture of the animal and the following information: the name of the animal, where it lives, what it eats, its size, one interesting detail.
Monitor students to determine if they can:
- consistently use prior knowledge to read unfamiliar words and understand new information during discussion
- correctly identify details in text during discussion and on a worksheet
- accurately recognize and understand the use of commas during discussion
- correctly words long /e/ vowel digraph words during discussion and on a worksheet
- accurately recognize and understand the use of commas during discussion
- correctly place content vocabulary in alphabetical order during discussion and on a worksheet
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