This complete, differentiated unit teaches students to write constructed responses. Kids learn to find evidence in the text, write a topic sentence, support with detail sentences, cite, and conclude. You'll love the results: improved student responses and improved test scores.
The unit takes you through an entire learning cycle:
- Direct Instruction: An editable PowerPoint provides a powerful introduction to answering questions. Students read the first passage, “Spring,” and follow along as the presentation models how to answer two questions with constructed responses.
- Guided Practice: Members of your class read a second passage, “The River Bank” and construct a response together.
- Independent Practice: Students practice with three more passages: “Rowing,” “The Rescue,” and “The Apology.”
- Assessment: After reading the final passage, “Rat’s House,” students answer a final question or two for as a test.
Six one-page passages tell the ongoing story of Rat and Mole. Each text, adapted from The Wind in the Willows, has been differentiated for three reading levels: high, average, and low. Now you can teach and reach all students in your class with one lesson! Two questions (one explaining and one inferring ) correspond to each text. Each response sheet features a checklist to reinforce understanding of this skill.
BONUS: A companion website stores all files (and more) in one convenient place. Just click and go. Differentiated reading comprehension passages and questions have also been saved as paperless Google files. You can grab the URL to share with your students or on a closed class website. It's perfect for Google Classroom!
Created by master teacher Brenda Kovich, these activities are classroom-tested and kid-approved. They are also part of the Fourth Grade Literature Skills Bundle, which addresses all fourth grade literature standards.
- Lesson plans
- Poster with steps for answering questions
- PowerPoint presentation that models the process for answering a question (editable)
- Six one-page excerpts from The Wind in the Willows, each differentiated at three reading level: “Spring,” “The River Bank,” “Rowing,” “The Rescue,” “The Apology,” and “Rat’s House”
- Six sets of question sheets that correspond to excerpts for guided practice, independent practice, and assessment
- Two rubrics (one with citation, one without) in two versions each (with and without Common Core State Standard RL.4.1 listed)
- Answering questions checklist (for quick assessment
- Generic question sheet and rubrics to use with any story
Bonus Materials - The companion website houses even more resources.
- Video lesson on answering questions
- Additional assessment option
- 4 handouts for guidance in answering questions
- Explaining versus inferring worksheet
- Teacher Tips with alternatives to constructed response, which include templates for constructed response cubes and constructed response burgers
Like each of my fourth grade literature skills units, this resource is available in three formats:
- PowerPoint – for teachers who want a clear introduction to the standard
- Practice – for teachers whose students need extra work on the standard
- Unit (this resource) – *best value* for teachers who want a complete learning cycle: direct instruction, guided practice, independent practice, and assessment (PowerPoint, practice, additional resources, companion website, and paperless Google option included)
You can choose the format that best fits your needs.
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- CCSS RL.4.1 – Refer to details and examples in a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text.
- Alaska Reading Standard for Literature Grade 4 – Refer to details and examples in a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text.
- Florida CPALMS LAFS.4.RL.1.1 – Refer to details and examples in a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text.
- Indiana Academic Standard 4.RL.2.1 – Refer to details and examples in a text when explaining what a text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from a text.
- Nebraska English Language Arts Standard LA 4.1.6.i – Construct and/or answer literal, inferential, and critical questions and support answers with explicit evidence from the text or additional sources.
- Oklahoma Academic Standards for English Language Arts 4.3.R.7 – Students will ask and answer inferential questions using the text to support answers.
- South Carolina College- and Career-Ready Standards Indicator 4-5.1 – Ask and answer inferential questions to analyze meaning beyond the text; refer to details and examples within a text to support inferences and conclusions.
- Texas TEKS 4.6 – Students understand, make inferences, and draw conclusions about the structure and elements of fiction and provide evidence from text to support their understanding.
The Wind in the Willows, written by Kenneth Grahame and illustrated by Paul Bransom, was published by Charles Scribner’s Sons in 1913 and is now in the public domain.
I'm committed to continual improvement. This unit was updated and enhanced on July 30, 2018.