This packet is a compilation of several different graphic organizers, activities, and writing activities that you can do with your students during reading.
In this packet, you will find the following:
1. Book Mobiles: These graphic organizers are best used for fiction stories. You can easily differentiate this activity by giving your high students (I call them my C group) one of each to fill out, giving your average students (I call them my B group) most of the graphic organizers to complete, and giving your lower group (I call them my A group) fewer graphic organizers to complete. The summary can be written in the boxes or on sticky notes and attached to it (I teach my students to summarize as they read so that their recall is much stronger. They read a certain amount and then summarize it on a sticky note and attach it). Once they are complete, you can glue them onto construction paper to make them sturdier and you can punch holes in the top (and bottom of all but the last one), attach them vertically with yarn, and then hang them from your ceiling, light fixture, or wall. The students love to complete these and require several skills sets to complete. They can work in groups, partnerships, or independently.
2. Social Media Page: This page is set up just like a social media page. The students can use it for fiction or nonfiction selections. They can use sticky notes (or write directly on it—or you can laminate it or put it in a sheet protector and they can write on it with dry erase markers) to write “updates” about what is going on in the story they are reading. They draw or print a picture of the main character who continues “updating” his or her status (if it is fiction), and other characters can “post” on the character’s wall updates that have happened in the story or post questions or comments for the character on the wall. If it is nonfiction, the students can draw a picture of the subject or person that is being read about and do the same thing with posts, questions, comments, and updates.
3. Website Template: This is set up just like a Web page. It has a rectangle for the students to draw a picture of the subject or person being researched, an address bar for the students to create a fake Web address, buttons across the top where students can write what the main research ideas would be about this subject (they can create one page for each button and staple them together or glue them onto a poster), and there are areas for them to write facts, questions, resources for further study, and whatever else you would like your students to do on that page. This is easily differentiated. Your A group would either not need to complete all sections or would put fewer facts, questions, pages, etc. Your B group would complete all parts and fewer pieces of information, and your C group would complete all parts, put the most information, and could even research a related topic and create a companion Web page for it.
4. Shadow Puppet Project: This project is designed to enhance students’ descriptive writing skills and their ability to make inferences. In this project, students make shadow puppets (it is helpful if you use a theme, like a holiday, animals, school supplies, etc.). The shadow puppets can be made on cardstock, cut out, and attached to a Popsicle stick. They then write a description of their puppet and seal the puppet, not the description, in an envelope (or brown paper bag). They staple the description to the envelope (or brown bag). The class switches shadow puppets with another class (or within the class if that is not possible). The other class (or other peers) then reads the description and infers what the shadow puppet is. They write their guess, connections they can make to the shadow puppet (what it reminds them of or makes them think about), and questions on the response sheet and attach it to the envelope. They can look and see if they’re correct! The classes (or peers) then switch puppets back so they have their originals. They love to do this! A rubric for this activity is included.
5. Parts of a Story Graphic Organizer: This graphic organizer was designed to let the students map out a story based on the beginning, the rising action, the climax, the falling action, and the resolution. The descriptions are included, and it is easy for the students to draw and complete for any story.
6. Context Clues Graphic Organizer: This graphic organizer was designed to help students guide their thinking when trying to use context clues to figure something out. They place what they are trying to figure out at the top, and then list and describe their clues and evidence from what they are reading. They place their conclusion at the bottom of the page. This can be laminated or placed in a sheet protector to be used with dry erase markers for continued use.
7. Analyzing Information Graphic Organizer: This graphic organizer was designed to facilitate the students’ thinking when trying to draw a conclusion from a given situation. They write what information they are digesting or analyzing and then writing what their thoughts are about it before writing their conclusion at the end. This can be laminated or placed in a sheet protector to be used with dry erase markers for continued use.
8. Making Predictions Graphic Organizer: This graphic organizer looks like crystal balls! The students write what they predict will happen based on the title and based on the pictures, and then determine whether or not their predictions were correct. There is also a vertical rectangle where they list any connections they make as they are reading. This can be laminated or placed in a sheet protector to be used with dry erase markers for continued use.
9. Main Idea Graphic Organizer: This graphic organizer is a very easy way for students to write the main idea and then supporting details. This can be laminated or placed in a sheet protector to be used with dry erase markers for continued use.
10. 5 Senses Graphic Organizer: This graphic organizer has a spot for the students to write the topic, then what (specifically) they are going to write about, the main idea of their writing, and then each of the 5 senses listed in a chart for them to describe how their topic appeals to each of the senses.
11. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Leveled Writing Prompt: This is a writing activity that is already leveled for you! The overview of the project is that students create a candy factory of their own. There are guiding questions for them as they are writing their descriptions of their candy factories. Once they complete their writing, they can construct their factories with boxes, posters, paint, or whatever materials you choose. The lower group is the A group, and they have fewer questions to answer. The average group is the B group, and they have more questions to answer. The high group is the C group, and they have the most questions to answer. This is a fun project, especially while or after reading Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. You do not have to read that story, however, to do this project.
12. Writing Prompt: This is a sample writing prompt asking the students to write a letter to Microsoft telling them how they can improve the next XBOX. A formal letter template, instructions, and rubric follow the prompt.
I hope y’all enjoy these activities as much as we do!