Our sight word for this week is ‘on’ and we are reviewing ‘is’ and ‘the.’ First, I review all sight words we’ve learned so far this year on flashcards. I quickly cycle through my word cards as students read me the words. The last word is always the word(s) we are working on for that week, in this case the last word is ‘on.’
I create a circle map and in the middle I write “The __ is on the ___.” As I write the words I have the kids read the words aloud to me.
Say: What do we see or what can we imagine being ‘on’ something else? I have an idea of something I have seen! The ladybug is on the flower. Now I want you t think about something you’ve seen on something else or something you imagine that could be on something else. It can be real or fantasy. (give kids think time) Turn and talk to your partner and tell them your idea for your writing.
I ask kids to share out. As they share out, I write on our circle map.
Before I read we review vocabulary words: coughed, sniffed, sneezed.. Ask: Does anyone know these words have in common? (these are things people do when they are sick with a cold) Students put words and illustrations in their dictionaries.
**While some may see this as teaching vocabulary in isolation, it really is not. We discuss the words through context and the dictionary illustrations also challenge the kids to provide context. This allows me to check for understanding. We further examine these words in the context of the story through the reading.
I show students the front cover of the book and have them read the title along with me. I say: Remember this title is something that the character Rat says often in the story. I show the first few pages of the second section of the story and I have students comment on anything that interests or puzzles them.
3rd Read: Character Analysis/Character Comparison
I do multiple reads of the same text to give students multiple opportunities to interact with the text. It also allows students to closely read the text and dig deeper into it to build a deeper understanding.
read pp. 16-39
Page 19 Ask: How are Rat and Dog like the other animals? (They all live in the junkyard, they all have to search for scraps of food to eat) How are they different from the other animals? (they don’t share; they live apart from the other animals; they don’t huddle for warmth with the other animals)
Page 23 I tell the students that one way to tell that a character is changing in a story is to think about how they were at the beginning of the story and how they are up to this point in the story. Ask: What was Dog like before the snow came? (grumpy, gruff, unfriendly) After the snow, what was Dog like? (he moved slower, stayed in his crate, quiet, didn’t look for food)
Page 27 We continue to compare Rat and Dog. Ask: What was Rat like before Dog became sick? (grumpy and gruff, unfriendly, didn’t share, lonely) After Dog became sick, what was Rat like? (he began to worry about Dog, shared his sandwich, looked for food with Dog, shared with other animals, not lonely)
Page 29 We discuss the changes in the characters Rat and Dog. Ask: What caused them to change? (they found a friend and learned to share) Think about friends you’ve made. How is the way you make friends similar to how Rat and Dog became friends? Do you share with your friends? (give think time to students) Turn and talk with a partner about how you’ve become friends with other boys and girls. You might say, “I make friends by ___” (let students share)
Write Off the Map
I review the circle map. I say: Boys and girls, do you remember our circle map from earlier? I want to use that linguistic pattern and use characters from our story to make a sentence!
I then show p. 15 of Don’t Need Friends and ask: Who is on what in this picture? The kids can tell me that the rat is on the crate. I use that picture as my example for the writing.
I write “The rat is on the crate.” on my paper and I draw a picture of the rat on the crate. I say: Boys and girls, help me read my sentence. I touch, you read. Ready? As I touch the words, the students read them aloud. If they need help, I read the word and they echo me. Students then go to their desks and use the circle map(s) to write their own sentence.