Lesson Plans for FOODS AROUND THE WORLD Level N

About the Book 

Text type: Nonfiction / Report
Word Count: 886
Page Count: 24

Text Summary
How does grilled antelope sound? Or perhaps caterpillars dried and cooked with onions and tomatoes? This entertaining and informative book takes us on a culinary trip around the world in search of the delicious and disgusting (at least, to our palate). Appetizing photographs accompany the text. 

About the Lesson  


  • Organize information using a map
  • Use commas in lists
  • Understand compound words 

borscht, cannolis, delicacy, escargot, flying foxes, game, rich, specialty, sushi 


  • Book - Food Around the World (copy for each student)
  • Chalkboard or chart paper
  • Worksheets 1 and 2 

Before Reading 

Building Background

  • Ask students about their favorite foods. Do they like pizza? Chocolate cake? Ice cream? Talk a bit about the national origins and histories of some of your students' favorite foods.
  • Ask students to name some foods from the different continents. What do they know about Asian food, European food, African food? What kinds of dishes or cooking techniques do they think of when they imagine these places? 

Previewing the Book

  • Hand out the books to students and have them look at the photographs. Do any of the foods look appetizing? Where do they think each food came from?
  • Turn to the table of contents. On which page will students read about Asia? How is the food from Europe described? What kinds of things do they think they'll read about in the chapter on Europe?
  • Point out the maps within the book. Using a world map in the classroom or on the comprehension worksheet, instruct students on how to position the smaller maps on the larger maps. 

Introducing the Comprehension Skill: Organizing information using a map

  • Hand out the comprehension worksheet and allow students to cut out the names of the foods at the bottom. Have students place the names on the continents where they predict the foods came from.
  • Model: Using a class map or globe, make a prediction about a food. Use think-aloud strategies: I see papaya listed on the worksheet. I enjoy papayas, and I live in North America. So I'm going to put papaya on North America. Tell your students that they will revise their predictions after reading. 

Set the Purpose
Tell students that they will read to find out where each food comes from and to link the maps in the text with the map on the worksheet. 

Word-Attack Strategies
Remind students to use any or all of the following strategies when they come to unfamiliar words:

  • Reread the sentence
  • Sound out the word using what they know about letter/sound relationships
  • Look for known prefixes, suffixes and roots in the word
  • Keep reading and think about what might make sense 

During Reading 

Student Reading
Allow students to read silently at their own paces. Monitor the student reading and provide prompts if it appears that a student is having difficulty. For example, if a student seems stuck on a word, suggest he or she try to sound out the word or use structural analysis skills such as knowledge of base words. Tell the student to think about whether the word he or she came up with makes sense.

After Reading 

Reflect on Reading Strategies

  • How did using prior knowledge help students understand what they read? Ask them to explain how thinking about the foods before reading helped them better understand what they were reading.
  • Discuss any other strategies they used while reading. For example, ask students to show you a word in the book that they sounded out. Or, ask them to explain how looking at a photograph helped them understand what they read. 

Applying the Comprehension Strategy: Organizing information using a map

  • Guided Practice: Use think-aloud strategies to revise your prediction using the book: Does anyone remember where we read about papayas? If I look on page 16, I read that papayas are a popular food among people in the South Pacific. The countries of New Zealand and Australia are located in the South Pacific. If I hold up the map in the book next to the map on the worksheet, I can match the shapes of New Zealand and Australia, and I'll know where to place the word papaya on the worksheet.
  • If students need more guidance or are stumped by a particular food, you may wish to provide more help.
  • Independent Practice: Have students complete the map on the worksheet. If students have time, they may color the map when they are finished.

Building Skills 

Grammar, Mechanics, and Usage: Using commas in lists

  • Have students turn to page 4 and circle all the commas on the page. Point out the listed phrases in the last sentence of the second paragraph.
  • Instruct students that whenever they have a list, they will put a comma between the items. Listed items can be nouns, verbs, adjectives, or, as here, entire phrases or clauses.
  • Tell students that if the items in the list are joined by conjunctions, they do not need commas. Make it clear that this rule applies only when all the items are joined by conjunctions. In the list on page 4, the last item is joined to the list by the word and, but the list still uses commas.
  • Have students read on to page 8, underlining lists as they go. Point out the two adjectives, crunchy and delicious on page 8. Write the two words on the board with a word-sized space between them. Ask students what they need to put between the two words. Add the comma. Then, erase the comma and write the word and. Point out that if there is a conjunction, no comma is needed.
  • Hand out worksheet 2. Instruct students to put commas between all the items in the lists. Remind them not to use commas if all of the items have conjunctions between them. 

Vocabulary: Compound words

  • Write the words world-famous, wildlife, and New Zealand on the board. Tell students that these are examples of different types of compound words. Each example has two parts that make up one word meaning; some are separated by hyphens, some are joined, and some are separate.
  • Ask them to tell you the two parts of the words. Ask how knowing the meanings of the words wild and life can help them understand the meaning of wildlife.
  • Pair students and have them search the book and underline other examples of compound words. Have them use one color for two words joined, another color for hyphenated words, and a third for separate words. Words they will find are: everyone, shortbread, leftovers, seaweed, nearby, wingspans, northwest, rattlesnakes, Midwest, everyone, West Africa, sweet potatoes, sour cream, ice cream, South Pacific, Latin America.
  • Once students have finished, have them share the words they found. Record them on the board. Ask students to identify the two words that make up each compound word and explain how the two meanings combine. 

Building Fluency 

Reading Independently

  • Allow students to read their books independently or with partners. Partners can take turns reading in the book. 

Home Connection

  • Have students take their books home. They can read them to parents, caregivers, siblings, or friends.

Expanding the Reading 


  • Have students create acrostic poems about their favorite foods. Acrostic poems use each letter of a word to start a word or line about that word. Have them refer to the Building Background discussion to help them come up with ideas.
  • Students can try using only one word for each letter of the food. Alternatively, they could try writing a phrase that begins with each letter:

Mouth watering
Easy to eat
Luscious taste
Out of the garden
Nice in hot weather    

  • Students can draw a picture of their favorite food to illustrate the poems. 

Social Studies Connection

  • Have students research the national origins of their favorite foods. Students can research just the dish they enjoy, or they can get as specific as the origins of the ingredients (for instance, tomatoes, so prevalent in Italian dishes, are native to the New World and only entered European cooking after Columbus)
  • Using a world map, students can create diagrams showing themselves enjoying their favorite food in their own country with arrows pointing from the various origins of that food.


  • Review students' map worksheets to assess how well they can remember, look up, and organize information by location. Note whether they are able to connect the maps in the text with a new map.
  • Review students' comma worksheets to check if they understand how to use commas in lists and not to use commas in lists joined by conjunctions.
  • Monitor the discussion of compound words to assess how well students understand the different forms. Ensure that students do not mistake separate words for non-hyphenated, separate compound words.

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