Some of you may know that for years I taught third grade. One of my favorite stories to read to my thirds was Measle and the Wrathmonk by Ian Ogilvy. The way that he chooses words makes every chapter so vivid! I just love his books! 🙂 When we adopted common core, and were asked to consider approaching more rigorous text for our firsties, I wasn’t exactly sure what direction to take. One of the things that I DO know about firsties is that if I seem excited about something…they get excited too. 🙂 So, I just jumped in and started conceptualizing how I would bring this text to them.
Because this is a chapter book geared for thirds and fourths, there are no pictures. So, I went about going through the chapter looking for good vocabulary words that I thought I could introduce to the children through the text. I made picture cards for each and added the sentence where the word was featured to help them understand that word in context.
The next thing I did was try to find You Tube video clips to highlight some of the larger themes in the chapter that I wanted to discuss.
My last step was a writing extension. This was probably the most difficult part of it for me. The text is rigorous, so…how exactly could they write about something that they could not read about? Ah HA! 🙂 They. could. DRAW!!!
I came up with a visualization rubric for them, and gave them a word bank and a space to draw me a picture…and VOILA! We. had. WRITING!!!
Last year, I emphasized the pictures more than the words. This year, I emphasized the pictures and the words.
I was surprised at how much detail they were able to put into telling me what they recalled about the ‘Horrible House’. All I gave them was the paper, some crayons, a pencil and a word bank. That’s IT! :0)
I know that common core for firsties can seem to be overwhelming at times, but the change in my kids is INCREDIBLE! When I ask for more…they actually can GIVE me more! 🙂 I’m so proud of each and every one of my learners! 🙂 Since one of the characters eats glazed donuts and pink lemonade while he plays with his train set…we wrapped up our publishing day with a ‘wee’ party! Complete with Basil’s snack!
I only prepared lessons for the first chapter of the book because I thought it was the best one for teaching the skill of visualization. The first chapter definitely has enough rigor for firsties and there is no need to read the entire book–although, trust me…they will want to! 🙂 For tomorrow’s post, I’ll break down some of the writing samples and talk about how I encourage descriptive writing with my firsties! 🙂
If you are interested in picking up my lessons on Measle & the Wrathmonk Chapter 1…click HERE to be directed to it in my TPT store! 🙂
Oh! And I did a giveaway on my blog for a literature unit from my store: The winners were…
Brooke Kendall &
I’ve already emailed you ladies to find out what unit I should send! 🙂
Of course, if you’d like this one…it’s yours! 🙂