The Giving Tree - A Common Core Unit (Close Reading)

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The Giving Tree – A Common Core Unit (Close Reading)

The Giving Tree is a complex book with simple text. If you have been looking for a way to help your students organize their thoughts and dive deeper into this classic book, check out this preview. Here are lessons and activities to reach Common Core Anchor Standards that challenge students to read closely, think deeply, and support opinions with evidence and examples, even in first grade.

This mini-unit is designed to introduce students to the concept of close reading. While organized around 1st grade Common Core Standards, it can be used with a higher level of support for end of kindergarten students. It can also be used with a lower level of support for 2nd graders.

To really understand the nuances of a story, students will read (or be read) a book multiple times with various objectives.

During this 69 page mini-unit (40 pages of student sheets), students will:
• activate prior knowledge
• develop new vocabulary
• find explicit text-based evidence
• explore inferential evidence
• determine a central message with supporting details
• practice retelling a story
• describe character, setting, and events
• compare a fiction book to a non-fiction passage
• describe the point of view
• explore the use of illustrations
• write an opinion piece

This unit consists of:
• Sample Schedule & Teacher Tips
• Opinion Brainstorming – “To give is better than to get.” & “To get is better than to give.”
• Take a Stand Sheets - “The tree should give a lot.” & The tree should give a little.”
“Give everything to the people you love.” Don’t give everything to the people you love.” and a List the Reasons worksheet both for and against
• 2 Tree Diagram worksheets
• Story Elements worksheets with suggested answers
• Agree / Disagree Statement worksheet for finding evidence with suggested answers
• Central Message worksheet - with suggested answers and fill in the blank
• Sequence of events – with answer key
• 5 Retell Graphic Organizers
• Character Analysis – with suggested answers
• Point of View
• Use of illustrations - Tree’s feelings, Boy’s feelings, understand the story better
• 2 Compare and Contrast worksheets
• Nonfiction Passages - The Story of an Apple Tree
• Items we use that come from Trees
• My Apple Book – Various Pages: blank, life cycle, and lined
• Writing Paper, Writing Activities, and a phonics worksheet

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Progress Monitoring Tool for Phonics

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Total Pages
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Teaching Duration
1 Week

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The Giving Tree - A Common Core Unit (Close Reading)
The Giving Tree - A Common Core Unit (Close Reading)
The Giving Tree - A Common Core Unit (Close Reading)
The Giving Tree - A Common Core Unit (Close Reading)
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