*Newly revised for the 2018-2019 school year!
This is a 44 page common core-aligned unit that focuses on the critical thinking skill, compare and contrast.
The topics are high interest boy topics: snakes, carnivorous plants, sharks, monster trucks, and lizards.
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Each topic has two paragraphs. Each card has a color picture. For example, there is one paragraph about a ball python snake and one about a black mamba snake. Then students compare/contrast the two types of snakes. Included are lesson instructions, 5 days of close reading instruction with teacher dialogue, one example set of cards, 5 sets of informational cards with pictures (10 cards in all), a large Venn diagram with lines, two column notes, 5 pages of close reading lessons with teacher dialogue, direct instruction for writing a compare and contrast essay, question/answer cards that ask questions that compare and contrast- one set of questions for each set of cards, and a paragraph frame. Finally, there is a rubric.
You could use this as a whole class lesson, close reading lesson, shared reading lesson, guided reading lesson, or as a literacy center. The possibilities are endless!
Common Core Standard:
English Language Arts Standards: Reading: Informational Text : Fourth Grade:
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.4.1Refer to details and examples in a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.5.5Compare and contrast the overall structure (e.g., chronology, comparison, cause/effect, problem/solution) of events, ideas, concepts, or information in two or more texts.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.6.1Cite textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.6.6Determine an author's point of view or purpose in a text and explain how it is conveyed in the text.
You can use these worksheets and cards however you like, as every teacher has their own teaching style. I have literacy centers set up, so these just fit perfectly. I use them to introduce compare and contrast, and then as a literacy center. You could also use it as a guided reading skill lesson.
Basically, I start each day with a 15 minute mini-lesson. I do this for the first 5 days (see below). Then, the following week, I set up the literacy center. I laminate the 5 sets of compare and contrast cards. I print them out on tag board. On one side I glue the picture, and on the other side I glue the paragraph. Each set of cards is whole punched and I use a brad to keep them together. This way a student can just grab one set of cards, without mixing them up.
I make lots of copies of the Venn diagram and the paragraph frame. I put everything into a folder. Then, students choose a set of cards. They read them, fill out a Venn diagram, and fill out the paragraph frame. There are 5 sets of cards, so that gives them one set to do each day. At the end of the week, I have them pick one paragraph frame and re-write it for a grade.
Also, if you like this lesson, you should check out some of my others:
Close Reading Killer Whales
Are the Bees Disappearing? Close Reading Lesson
Close Reading Yellowstone Wolves
The Loch Ness Monster Close Reading Unit
Megalodon Shark Close Reading Unit
Do Mermaids Exist? Close Reading Unit
Shark Controversy Close Reading Unit
Bigfoot Close Reading Unit
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