When teaching a new concept, it is good practice to review something previously taught that can tie the children's schema to the new information. We will briefly discuss previous book that we read before we jump into our lesson.
Boys and girls as we gather on the rug today, I want you to think about the main characters of some of Eric Carle's books. Let's see, we heard about the Grouchy Ladybug, the Mixed-up Chameleon, the Very Hungry Caterpillar, the Lonely Firefly, etc... Each of Eric Carle's characters that we listed had a book named after them. Today's story is called The Very Quiet Cricket. Hmmm, I wonder if there is a clue there. Who can tell me what it means to have a main character in a story? That's right, it tells us who the story is mainly about. Let's hear the story to see if our guess is right.
It is important to have the chart done ahead of time so that the children stay focused while you are teaching. The more times I expose my student to the concepts of character and setting, the more it will become part of their daily reading strategies.
Well, children what do you think? Who is the main character in the story? How would you describe him? What are some of the other characters that the cricket encountered? When you can identify the main character and some of the other characters, you can better understand what the story is all about. I have started a chart for us to gather our information about the story. Do you see this symbol on the chart? You will need to recognize this when you do your seatwork. Tell me again, who is the main character, because I am going to write it next to that symbol on the chart.
Now let's dig a little deeper into the story. We are going to look at the setting. Who remembers what the setting is?(where and when does it take place) What is the setting of this story? I will turn the pages of the book, and by you looking at the illustrations, I think you will figure out the setting. Who thinks they have an idea now? (Accept: in a field, meadow, garden, yard, a grassy place.) Do you see this symbol that looks a little like a cloud on the chart? You will need to recognize this, too. Tell me again, what is the setting, because I am going to write it next to that symbol on the chart.
There is one more symbol on the chart--it reminds me of a sign. It says, "The little cricket was born from an _________." Why do you think it might be important to know from where the cricket came? When we are learning about characters, we want to know about their background or history so that we can see why they make the choices that they do. Being that the cricket came from an egg, we can begin to understand that he is an insect, and from what we have learned about insects tells us that it takes some time for parts to develop--like his wings.
In a few minutes, you will get a paper that asks for the same information as our chart.
Once you have your paper, I will explain what I would like you to do. If you match the symbol from the chart to the shapes on the paper, I think you will be able to fill in the spaces. I would like you to illustrate your boxes so that I can see if you understand what you are writing about.
First, please write your name.
Secondly, fill in the shapes with your writing.
Thirdly, illustrate your writing and color the paper in neatly.
I will be walking around and talking to students to have them explain their choices, and their understanding of the story.