Targeted Reading Strategies: Comparing and Contrasting Characters in Fairy Tales
This unit is perfect for introducing, practicing, or reviewing elements of characters. In using this mini-unit, you will be teaching your students a number of ways to compare and contrast characters within and across texts while reading fairy tales. In the process, you will be targeting some key Common Core State Standards for second and third grade:
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.2.1. Ask and answer such questions as who, what, where, when, why, and how to demonstrate understanding of key details in a text.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.2.3. Describe how characters in a story respond to major events and challenges.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.2.6. Acknowledge differences in the points of view of characters, including by speaking in a different voice for each character when reading dialogue aloud.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.2.1. Participate in collaborative conversations with diverse partners about grade 2 topics and texts with peers and adults in small and larger groups.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.2.2. Recount or describe key ideas or details from a text read aloud or information presented orally or through other media.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.3.1. Ask and answer questions to demonstrate understanding of a text, referring explicitly to the text as the basis for the answers.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.3.3. Describe characters in a story (e.g., their traits, motivations, or feelings) and explain how their actions contribute to the sequence of events.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.3.1. Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grade 3 topics and texts, building on others' ideas and expressing their own clearly.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.3.2. Determine the main ideas and supporting details of a text read aloud or information presented in diverse media and formats, including visually, quantitatively, and orally.
Through five days, your students will practice identifying and describing characters in fairy tales. They will work on describing traits of heroes, villains, and other characters in fairy tales. They will compare and contrast these characters, using traits and evidence from the text to support their thinking. They will also recognize change and evolution of characters, especially heroes of fairy tales. Comparing and contrasting characters and story elements are important elements of reading for children, as they need to be able to understand what makes characters unique and necessary to the stories they read. This also promotes higher level thinking, as students synthesize what they have observed about characters and apply it to other stories. While we have paced this pack as a short 5-day unit, it can easily be stretched into two weeks by spending two days per reading lesson and providing your students with additional time to practice the skills targeted. We have also provided a Letter to Caregivers to introduce the unit and a rubric to close the unit.
Have fun comparing and contrasting characters in fairy tales with your students through this targeted mini-unit!
Be sure to check out our other Reading Units of Study:
Unit 1: Constructing Our Reading LivesUnit 2: Flexing Our Reading MusclesUnit 3: Investigating the Minds of CharactersUnit 4: Navigating Through NonfictionUnit 5: Revving Up For Series ReadingUnit 6: Diving Deeper Into Nonfiction
Here are our units of study focused on amazing authors and texts:
Ezra Jack Keats: Reader's and Writer's Workshop Author SeriesNancy Carlson: Reader's and Writer's Workshop Author SeriesThe Polar Express: A Reading and Writing Unit of Study
Here are our units of study focused on Targeted Reading Skills:
Fables and Folktales [Central Message and Story Elements] Reading Unit of StudyFairy Tales [Comparing and Contrasting Characters] Reading Unit of StudyLittle Red Riding Hood [Point of View] Reading Unit of StudyMartin Luther King, Jr. [Author's Purpose and Main Ideas] Reading Unit of StudyPolar Animals [Text Features in Nonfiction Texts] Reading Unit of StudyPresidents of America [Main Idea & Key Details] Reading Unit of StudyThe Human Body [Comparing & Contrasting Texts] Reading Unit of Study
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