This is a 20 page unit filled with resources to accompany the story, The Polar Express. It is aligned to the Common Core standards. It contains the following:
Slide 3: Spelling and Vocabulary Words. This contains spelling and vocabulary words from the story, The Polar Express.
Slides 4-7: This is an activity that students can work on throughout the unit. There are 4 parts of a “train.” These look great placed together and put up around the classroom or the hallway. The first train contains the Title of the story. The second train is a basic beginning, middle, and end story map. The third train is a Non-Fiction Connection. Here, students can read the story Trains by Gail Gibbons, or another non-fiction selection on trains. They may then record facts they have discovered about trains. The final part of the train is a reading response. After reading the story, students will respond to the story by deciding who they think can hear the bell and who can not hear the bell ring.
Slides 8-10: Slides 8-10 contains questions based on Bloom’s Taxonomy. There are 2 questions ranging from knowledge type questions to evaluation. This gives students a chance to participate in deep, critical thinking. In centers after reading the story, these cards can be cut up and drawn. Students may discuss the answer. There is also a recording sheet for the questions on slide 10.
Slide 11: In centers, partners, small group, or whole group, have students read through the story and find the nouns, verbs, and adjectives presented in the book.
Slide 12: After reviewing point of view, discuss whose point of view the story is being told. Then, discuss how the story could change from other character’s points of view. Then, have students complete a creative writing activity in which they write the story from the conductor’s point of view.
Slides 13-15: These pages are dedicated to the figurative language found throughout the story. On page 12, discuss with students figurative language. Read excerpts from the story that contains figurative language. Have students write the figurative language found on one side of the T-Chart. On the other side of the T-Chart, write the plain language it states. Examples of figurative language found throughout the story is found on slide 13. On this page, students will replace the plain language with figurative language found in the story at the bottom of the page. On slide 14, students participate in a creative writing activity in which they place figurative language into their writing. After a lesson on figurative language, have students imagine they are on the journey. They will use figurative language to describe what they are seeing.
Slides 16-17: Slide 15 contains tickets that you can print of on card stock to give to students. After reading the story, they can get a “ticket” to watch the movie. You can even hole punch the tickets like they do in the movie. Slide 16 is a Venn Diagram in which students compare and contrast the book and the movie.
Slides 18-20: Slide 17 is a vocabulary test on the vocabulary words from page 3. Slides 18-19 are a comprehension test on The Polar Express that includes multiple choice, short answer, and responding to literature. Both of these should be given at the end of your Unit.
*I hope you enjoy your packet! It is aligned to the Common Core, specifically for grades 2-4. Please feel free to e-mail me or ask a question if you have any questions at all! Thank you! Katie Willis