Nonfiction Trading Cards Interactive Activity Informational Reading

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0.49 MB   |   12 pages


Common Core State Standards in reading place an increased emphasis on nonfiction reading.

A great addition to any nonfiction or nonfiction text features unit - or use year-round in your independent informational reading program.

Build your students’ enthusiasm for Reading to Learn and reading in general.

An excellent differentiated activity, as all readers can participate using books from a variety of difficulty levels!

Nonfiction Trading Cards activity can serve as a cooperative learning/jigsaw-like method of sharing information/learning and/or
can be used to generate competition buzz for increased motivation.

Can be used as a whole-class, small group, learning center, individual incentive project or homeschool activity.

As they read nonfiction books of their choice, students record and illustrate interesting facts they find.

Students make, trade, read and collect as many Nonfiction Trading Cards as they can.

Ideas for use:
Collect,/Set Out,/Make Available a large selection of nonfiction books. Let students browse, trade, share, peruse, and enjoy the books.

This is a great time to include books from lower or higher reading levels. Many nonfiction books are written at reading levels far above students’ interest levels. Not only is providing nonfiction books from a variety of difficulty levels a wonderful way to differentiate the activity, it offers students a way to learn as much as they can even from books that may be “too easy” or “too hard” for them to read normally.

Nonfiction books are often more accessible to readers when the “reading level” is lower than expected and interesting info is included in even the easiest nonfiction picture book! Almost anyone can learn a fact or two from a book that is “too easy” or “too hard.”

Encourage students to use Nonfiction Text Features to find the info they’re most interested in: Table of Contents, Index, Glossary, Headings, Text Boxes, Captions, Charts, Graphs, Illustrations, Bold Print.

The more “buzz” is generated, the more students will be motivated to read nonfiction. Each group of students is different: some may simply do this as an activity; for some groups or individuals the idea may take fire. Ideally, students as individuals or as groups may be motivated to compete for volume of facts read/collected/shared. The level of competition/incentive systems you create is up to you and may differ year-to-year and group-to-group,, depending on your needs and the needs of the group. Incentive points/stickers/class economy “cash” etc. can be employed to increase engagement level. (Number of cards created/collected can equal stickers received, cards can be “bought and sold” using classroom economy dollars, charts can record who owns/creates the most cards, etc.) All of these aspects of the trading cards activity are optional. I establish a bare minimum participation level for individuals or the whole group, then sit back and see what happens. I keep it going as long as it’s effective and for as long as I have time in the schedule. Sometimes I have the opportunity to offer recess card-collecting groups (sometimes with hot cocoa or snacks); other times I’m not available at recess. Sometimes, I sit back and watch as individual kids or groups take off and run with the activity and use it in ways I hadn’t ever imagined. You may come up with additional ideas (share with us in the comments section!)

ALL pages are included in the preview, watermarked.

Each card holds 1 fact on the back. Students illustrate the front of the card with an image and label of their topic.

File contains 12 pages—8 pages of blank trading cards—4 sets (fronts and backs) to choose from)
plus Student Directions; Tips Card (pages 9, 10) and Teacher Directions, Tips Card (pages 11, 12)

Photocopy fronts to backs.

Each page contains 10 copies of the same card. Cut to generate trading cards.

Print on cardstock or regular paper.
Ink-savers’ Tips:
Print in Color or Greyscale, as desired.
You may want to:
Print and photocopy pages 1-8 only (students will have 4 styles to choose from)
Or select just one of the four styles to use with your class.
You may decide to print just one side and have students illustrate the blank sides .
You will only need to print a few copies of pages 9/10 (Student Directions, Tips) - there are 10 sets of directions per page. You’ll only need one per student. Or you can skip and post directions on the board or project them instead.
Print only 1 copy of pages 11/12 (teacher directions).

Word by Word Laura Hurley c 2013

Permission granted for individual classroom use only. Posting Online Strictly Forbidden
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Nonfiction Trading Cards Interactive Activity Informationa
Nonfiction Trading Cards Interactive Activity Informationa
Nonfiction Trading Cards Interactive Activity Informationa
Nonfiction Trading Cards Interactive Activity Informationa
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