With a spring nearing and with this school year nearing the last quarter. I can sense my students getting a little restless and wishing things were back to normal. However, we still have one special time of day, which is of course read-aloud time.
It seems students are more engaged during our read aloud time. They love listening to and discussing each new story. I wanted to share our recommended read-aloud’s for spring. Each book was carefully selected to ensure that we could meet all the Reading Literature standards. Read below to see how you can incorporate activities from each read-aloud. For this post, I’ve chosen only 1 activity per book. However, typically we cover many standards in each three to five-day close read .
For one of our lessons, we decided to focus on informational text standards with with our Diary of a Worm read-aloud. Diary of a Worm, by Doreen Cronin follows a young worm through his diary entries.
Kids find that the worm isn’t so different from them. He has a mom and dad and he goes to school each day. We discussed the diary format of the story and how the story follows the dates in chronological order. Then the students chose three events from the story and put them in chronological order by date, which hit standard 3 for informational text.
Tops and Bottoms, by Janet Stevens is one of our all-time favorite children’s books. Kids love that the book is designed to flip from top to bottom (instead of left to right), and this unique structure complements the “top to bottom” theme. Tops and Bottoms is a traditional trickster tale about Hare, who solves his financial problems by outsmarting Bear. As he strikes a deal with Bear, Hare and his family plant and harvest crops on Bear’s land, then split the crop in half. Hare tricks Bear into choosing the “wrong half” each time, leaving hare with the “right half” each season. For one lesson, we chose to focus on key ideas and details standards by having students “plant the crops” using a vegetable cut and paste. This activity helps students understand how Hare tricks Bear each season with the “tops and bottoms.”
Muncha, Muncha, Muncha!, by Candace Fleming is a humorous story about Mr. McGreely and his ongoing battle with the bunnies, who repeatedly find ways to sneak into his garden. He builds fences, moats, and finally a fortress to protect his vegetables. Kids can’t wait until the end, to see who will win the battle. Kids love the sound effects, repetitive phrases, and humorous illustrations. This is a great story for teaching the craft and structure standards with cause and effect.