I chose this book because it has great illustrations and text evidence. The kids can make inferences easily because they have schema about vegetables and animals in a garden. They made some great connections between the animals in the story, which really added to their understanding of the book. When students can describe these connections (the hornworm digs in the garden next to the worms), between scientific ideas and concepts, they are strengthening their own comprehension. (RI.2.3) Since this story had familiar animals and a topic that they knew about, I wanted to give them the opportunity to find clear examples of evidence and use their schema to make conclusions. They also liked this book because it's like a mystery - they enjoyed guessing what the animals were and it turned into a bit of a science lesson when we looked up pictures on the iPad at the end.
This is the second lesson in my unit about inferencing and making conclusions. I encourage you to look at my other lesson, Draw the Dot, Draw the Conclusion for more practice with a literature example.
Underlined words below are lesson vocabulary words that are emphasized and written on sentence strips for my Reading & Writing word wall. I pull off the words off the wall for each lesson, helping students understand this key 'reading and writing' vocabulary can be generalized across texts and topics. The focus on acquiring and using these words is part of a shift in the Common Core Standards towards building students’ academic vocabulary. My words are color coded ‘pink’ for literature/’blue’ for reading strategies/’orange’ for informational text/'yellow' for writing/’green’ for all other words)
Common starting point
Give the purpose of the lesson
Introduce strategy - teacher models
Practice strategy - guided practice (these are my students comments - you'll have different input from the kids, and maybe have different conclusions)
The real purpose behind this lesson is to make the kids 'close readers', those that read with a purpose and pay attention to the evidence. They are demonstrating understanding of the plot by asking and answering questions and making inferences. They are making conclusions and using illustrations and words from the text. (RI.2.1) These are the kinds of readers that the Common Core Standards are written for - those that question as they read, using what they know (schema) and evidence from the text to answer questions and demonstrate understanding of what they have read.
Extend what you've learned
Scaffolding and Special Education: This lesson could be easily scaffolded up or down, depending on student ability.
Students with limited language ability may struggle with finding the evidence in the lesson. You could read this on an Elmo and give them prompts by pointing to the words or pair them with a friend.
Those with higher language ability should be able to use some higher level language and vocabulary in their evidence and conclusion. Instead of saying, 'they will eat a snack', students could infer using a simile - 'the kids are like the animals in the garden - they will have a turn to eat.'