Today's lesson will follow the CCSS for engaging my students in a class discussion about story details. We will then write about the story events. I have heard them singing the song, Little Bunny Foo Foo from music class. I thought that being Spring, it would be fun to read the story. When I went looking for the story, I found a slightly different version and decided this version would be fun to read.
"You have been singing the song Little Bunny Foo Foo. I remember singing it when I was little. Would you like to sing along to a video? Ok, let's sing."
I turn on the video and we all sing.
"That was fun. I found a book the is called Little Rabbit Foo Foo. It is a little different. What was different in the title? Let me say it again. Little RABBIT Foo Foo. Yes, this book uses the word rabbit instead of bunny. Let's read the story and see what else is different. I think you will laugh at some of the things."
I am hoping that singing the song from music class got them exited to listen to the story. They LOVE to sing that song.
"The book I am going to read to you today is titled Little Rabbit Foo Foo. Listen closely to what the rabbit bops on the head."
I read the story and we stop to discuss the picture details on each page. They laugh at the wriggle worms. We talk about what wriggly means. They think that the word wriggly is funny. The goblins caught them by surprise, they said, "those aren't goblins those are little men." They are confused by what the goon looks like, I guess the music teacher has a different version and her goon is red. They argued with me about the green goon. So, I told them they could color their goon any color they wanted to.
When the story is over I draw a bubble map for us to write all the story details on. I have to turn the book page by page to prompt them. It is good for me to show them that we can go back in the text to find the answer. This is an important skill for my students to learn. In the upper grades they will have to read a passage and go back through the text to find the answer to questions about the text.
"Let's make a bubble map of all the things we can think of about the story. My middle bubble will have the title in it. Little Rabbit Foo Foo. Let's go up and down the rows and see what you remember. I will turn the pages and help you remember the details."
After I write down all their answers, we chorally read the bubbles.
"Let's write some sentences from the bubble map. Let's start with this bubble, what can we write about this bubble? It says field mice'. I need help thinking of a sentence. What can I say about field mice'?"
My students help me brainstorm a sentence for every bubble. I do little prompting. I act only as facilitator for this part of the lesson. I really want these to be a bank of sentences that they can draw from.
We chorally read all the student generated sentences. I dismiss my students one row at a time to go to their tables. Sending them one row at a time gives me more control over the kaos that can happen during transitions. I have class helpers that pass out the writing paper to each seat. I love using class helpers. I rotate my helpers every day. Everyone has a job. I find this helps them with learning responsibility and building a sense of community.
"I would like you to write three sentences. If you can, you can write more. I will give everyone one gummy bear for each full sentence you write. I will put the front cover up on the smart board. Before we go home today, we will watch the video reading of this story."
I walk around and help my lower students. I highlight the sentence for one student who forgot his glasses. I love to watch them write they are so focused. Of course, the bribe didn't hurt their focus.
I collect the writing papers as they finish. My students sit on the carpet quietly and read library books. I don't want to rush my slower students. Sometimes they are not slow, they draw and color very detailed pictures. I like them to not be rushed so they can finish and feel the satisfaction of doing how they want to. Even though this is a structured activity, there has to be some amount of creativity.
When everyone is finished, we clean up the books and sit on the carpet ready to listen. I love this part of the lesson. It is like a miniature assessment that doesn't seem like an assessment. I will learn if my instruction was intentional enough for all my students to gain comprehension of the CCSS I used in planning the lesson. I will learn if they liked the subject. A detailed sentence and a drawing indicate that they were interested and learned some information. I will learn if I need to change my instruction to encourage the students participation in the discussions. I will learn if I need to differenciate my expectations or give more instruction to my lower students.
When everyone is sitting on their squares, criss cross apple sauce, I call a row up at a time for the reading to begin. My ELL students seem to be braver and more willing to read their writing with their friends are around them. Each students get the opportunity to read their writing and show off their drawings. We applaud and cheer after each reading.
I love to show a video of the book or a reading to help re-enforce the vocabulary, story comprehension and the love of listening to a story. I show videos at the end of the day when chairs are stacked, backpacks are on we are waiting for dismissal. Here is the reading of the story video.