Reading Response Menu Project: A Week of Writing about Texts | Distance Learning

Grade Levels
3rd - 5th, Homeschool
Formats Included
  • PDF
  • Google Apps™
32 pages
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The Teacher-Author indicated this resource includes assets from Google Workspace (e.g. docs, slides, etc.).


Getting students engaged in writing responses to reading can be difficult. We want them thinking and developing deep comprehension, but tackling lengthy "writing about reading" projects and essays can be tiring--and not very effective. I wanted an engaging way for students to write about reading AND show deep reading comprehension!

This response to literature menu TOTALLY nailed it!

I was looking for a way for my students to dig a little deeper into some of the texts we have studied in recent weeks during our historical fiction unit. What I decided to do could also be applied to ANY fiction studies—and my students LOVED these activities. I pull out some of these activities throughout the year to keep students engaged and to help me see their thinking.

Here is how my thinking unfolded…I wanted students to refine their understanding of comparing and contrasting (BIG in the CCSS) as well as to begin to understand the idea of “point of view” and seeing events in a story from different perspectives.

So…I modeled these concepts by reading a few picture books and talking about how the different characters “saw” the story unfold. We talked about what these characters might write in a diary or journal—and how these different journals might tell the same story with totally different emotions and feelings! We then dug into two chapter books we had read aloud and got ready to write about our reading!

We used a "menu" approach where I required TWO tasks and then students used writers' workshop time to pick and choose from among the other six. They planned, revised, peer conferenced, and published!

This resource includes:

  • My day by day outline
  • The menu I used
  • Reproducible posters to use in a display
  • Photos of student samples and displays
  • All graphic organizers and forms
  • Common Core alignment page
  • Digital Slide Access
  • Project checklist for self-assessment

This unit can be altered in many different ways to suit your needs. I hope you and your students enjoy it!


Looking for more high quality fiction resources? Here are a few!

Sarah Plain and Tall Novel unit

Number the Stars Novel Unit

Esperanza Rising Novel Unit

Digital Reading Response Resource for ANY Novel

Bundle of Narrative Writing Resources


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Total Pages
32 pages
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
1 Week
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to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
Compare and contrast two or more characters, settings, or events in a story or drama, drawing on specific details in the text (e.g., how characters interact).
Quote accurately from a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text.
Compare and contrast the point of view from which different stories are narrated, including the difference between first- and third-person narrations.
Describe in depth a character, setting, or event in a story or drama, drawing on specific details in the text (e.g., a character’s thoughts, words, or actions).
Refer to details and examples in a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text.


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