Where Animals Live
Level D

About the Book

Text Type: Nonfiction/ Informational
Page Count: 10
Word Count: 116

Book Summary
Where Animals Live is an informational book that presents various animals and the places in which they live. The text and illustrations provide a way to introduce early readers to the concept of habitats.

About the Lesson

Targeted Reading Strategy

  • Ask and answer questions


  • Use the strategy of asking and answering questions to understand text
  • Identify the main idea and supporting details
  • Blend sounds in words heard orally
  • Identify words with r-family blends
  • Apply sentence punctuation
  • Categorize words


  • Book -- Where Animals Live (copy for each student)
  • Chalkboard or dry erase board
  • Index cards
  • Main idea and details, capitalization and punctuation 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: this, these, some
  • Content words: bird, monkey, frog, turtle, prairie dog, woodchuck, bat, bear, deer, fox, octopus, whale, people, tree, pond, burrow, cave, woods, ocean, house

Before Reading

Build Background

  • Ask students where they live (house, apartment, and so on). Ask them where birds live (trees, nests). Ask students to name other places where animals live.
  • Ask students why they think animals live in different places (food, temperature, and so on).

Book Walk

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 Where Animals Live. (Accept any answers students can justify.) Ask students to name animals they recognize on the covers.
  • Show students the title page. Discuss the information on the page (title of book, author's name, illustrator's name).

Introduce the Reading Strategy: Ask and answer questions

  • Tell students that one way to understand a book is to ask questions about the story before they begin to read, and then to look for the answers as they read.
  • Model asking a question about the cover information.
  • Think-aloud: I see there is an animal that lives in the ground. I wonder what a home that is in the ground is called. I wonder what other animals live in the ground.
  • Write these questions in a chart on the board and encourage students to add questions as you preview the rest of the book.
  • 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
  • Reinforce new vocabulary and word-attack strategies by asking students to point to objects in the pictures. Provide opportunities for students to say the words, talk about their meanings, and use the words in sentences. For example, ask students to point to the picture of the bird on page 4. Have them say the word and tell what sound they hear at the beginning. Ask students to find the word on page 4 and explain how they know the word is bird. Ask them to look at the picture and decide whether the word bird makes sense. Have them use the word bird in a sentence. Repeat the process with other vocabulary words if necessary.
  • Remind students to look at the beginning and ending sounds, the parts within words, and the pictures to help them say words.
  • Encourage students to add the new vocabulary words to their word journals.
  • For additional tips on teaching high-frequency words or word-attack strategies, click here.

Set the Purpose

  • Have students read to find out where animals live. Have them look for the answers to their questions as they read the book.

During Reading

Student Reading

  • Guide the reading: Give students their copy of the book. Have a volunteer point to the first word on page 3 (Animals). Point out where to begin reading on each page. Remind students to read words from left to right. Point to each word as you read it aloud while students follow along in their own book.
  • Ask students to place a finger on the page number in 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 answering a question.
    Think-aloud: I wanted to know which animals live in the ground and what their homes are called. On page 6, I read about prairie dogs and woodchucks. The picture shows both animals sticking out of a hole in the ground. This makes me think that their homes are in the ground. This home is called a burrow. I also read about animals that live in the water. I wonder which animals live in the water. I'll keep reading to find out whether my question is answered.
  • Ask students which animals they have read about so far and where these animals live. Ask students whether they were able to answer any of their questions. Ask them whether they thought of additional questions as they were reading. Write these questions on the chart on the board.
  • Have students read the remainder of the story. Remind them to keep looking for answers to their questions 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.

After Reading

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.
  • Invite students to share answers they found to their questions while reading. Discuss how asking and answering questions in their mind as they read made them think about what they were reading.
  • Think-aloud: I wanted to know what other animals live in the water. I learned that an octopus and a whale are both animals that live in the water.
  • Discuss additional strategies students used to gain meaning from the book.

Teach the Comprehension Skill: Main idea and details

  • Discussion: Ask students what new things they learned from reading this book. Ask which questions they were unable to answer from their reading and how they might find the answers to those questions.
  • Introduce and model the skill: Explain to students that books they read have a main idea that tells what the book is about. The title of the book and the pictures can be clues to identify the main idea. Discuss the main idea of this book. (Different animals live in different places.) Explain that there are facts in the book that tell where animals live. Point out that on page 4 the details in the book tell us that birds and monkeys live in trees.
  • Think-aloud: I know the book is about different animals that live in different places. When I read page 4, I read about a bird and a monkey. Both animals live in the trees. This is a detail that tells about the main idea.
  • Check for understanding: Have students turn to page 5 in their book. Have them tell you another detail about animals and where they live.
  • Independent practice: Introduce, explain, and have students complete the main idea and details worksheet. If time allows, discuss their answers.

  Instruct students to use the last page of the book to draw a picture of an animal not in the book and where it lives. Ask students to share their picture with the group.

Build Skills

Phonological Awareness: Blend sounds

  • Say the word frog by segmenting it into its individual phonemes: /f/ /r/ /o/ /g. Tell students that you can tell what the word is by blending the sounds together to say the whole word: frog.
  • Explain to students that you are going to say some words by splitting them into their individual sounds. Say the following words, one at a time, and have students blend the sounds to together to say each word: bird, bats, whale, house, trees.

Phonics: R-family blends

  • Write the word frog on the board and read it aloud with students. Circle the fr blend and tell students that the sounds of these two letters are blended together to stand for the /fr/ sound. Have students blend the sounds of the letters together to say the fr blend. Have them find the word frog on page 5 and put their finger on the letters that stand for the /fr/ sound.
  • Point out the word trees on page 4. Tell students that this is another r-family blend. The sounds of the two letters t and r together stand for the /tr/ sound.
  • Ask students whether they can find an r-family blend on page 3 (ground). Have them put their finger on and say the blend in the word. Repeat the process with the word prairie on page 6.
  • Write the following blends in a row on the board: br, cr, dr, fr, gr, pr, tr. Have students say each blend with you. Under each blend, write a word that starts with that blend: brim, crop, drab, frog, grab, prop, trip. Have students blend the sounds together in each word with you as you run your finger under the letters. Then have volunteers circle the blends in the words.

Grammar and Mechanics: Capitalization and punctuation

  • Write the following sentence on the board: Whales live in the ocean. Remind students that sentences always begin with a capital letter. Ask a volunteer to identify the capital letter at the beginning of the sentence on the board.
  • Remind students that there are different kinds of sentences and this sentence tells the reader something. Circle the period at the end of the sentence. Explain that every telling sentence has a period at the end so readers will know when to stop reading.
  • Write the following sentence part on one index card and tape it to the board: fly. Write Birds on a second index card and tape it to the board to the right of fly. Ask students how they can figure out the word that comes at the beginning of the sentence (it begins with a capital letter). Ask students to tell how they can figure out which word comes at the end of the sentence (it is followed by a period). Put the sentence above in the correct order.
  • Have students dictate sentences. Write each sentence on the board, leaving off the initial capital letter and end punctuation. Have volunteers come to the board and correct the sentences.
  • Independent practice: Introduce, explain, and have students complete the capitalization and punctuation worksheet. If time allows, discuss their responses.

Word Work: Categorize words

  • Ask students what all of the words in the book were about (animals and where they live). Review the names of the animals and write them on the board (birds, monkey, frog, turtle, prairie dog, woodchuck, bats, bear, deer, fox, octopus, whale). Review the places these animals live and write these words on the board (trees, pond, burrow, cave, woods, ocean).
  • Tell students that these words can be put into two groups. Ask students to tell what the groups are (animals and places where animals live). Write these headings on the board. Read each word and have students tell in which group the word belongs. Write or draw the word under the appropriate heading.

Build Fluency

Independent Reading

  • Allow students to read their book independently. Additionally, partners can take turns reading parts of the book to each other.

Home Connection

  • Give students their book to take home to read with parents, caregivers, siblings, or friends.

Extend the Reading

Writing and Art Connection
Write the following sentence pattern on the board: This animal lives _______. Have students choose an animal and illustrate it on a separate piece of paper. Then have them use the sentence pattern to write where their animal lives. Have students share their illustration and sentence.

Science Connection
Provide resources for students to use to find information about the various animals. Ask pairs of students to choose an animal and find out such information as: what the animal eats, what it looks like, and where it lives. Invite students to share their findings.


Monitor students to determine if they can:

  • ask and answer questions about the text
  • understand the main idea and identify supporting details during discussion and on a worksheet
  • correctly blend sounds to say words during discussion
  • identify words with r-family blends during discussion
  • capitalize and punctuate sentences during discussion and on a worksheet
  • categorize words during discussion

Comprehension Checks

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