Why is the Sky Blue? - Science Reading Article - Grades 5-7

Grade Levels
5th, 6th, 7th, 8th
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2.42 MB   |   5 pages


Why is the Sky Blue? - Fully editable, Science Reading Activity - Disciplinary Literacy for Grades 5-7 (ages 10-12) as well as older students with lower developed learning levels. Tackle literacy and science by having your students read and answer questions from a scientific article. Each page highlights and explains key terms for student reference. Questions include knowledge (direct from the paper), thinking, connecting and open-ended varieties.

No Prep, no formatting, no issues. Simply download, print (or upload to your class site) and you're all set. The article comes as a WORD file as well as a PDF for your convenience. It is meant for a grade 5-7 class. If you would like something for older kids, please check out Why is the Sky Blue? An application of light waves


This reading is perfect for an extension activity, substitute plans or literacy practice and hits on the following Common Core Standards:

The reading looks at:
- Electromagnetic waves introduction
- What is the visible light spectrum?
- Why is the sky blue?
- Why are sunsets red and not blue?


The reading is included in my 'Why is the Sky Blue?' lesson. Click here to have a look.


The article is divided into easily understood sections which clearly describe the topic in a manner that can be understood by your grade 5-7 student as well as older students with less developed literacy skills. Along with elementary and middle school students, these readings have been used to great success with high school English language learners and students with learning difficulties.

The article contains a word bank of more complex terms which are highlighted on each page along with fun fact boxes and pictures which stand out and grab the attention of young readers.

The Problems You Face
- Not having the time to properly teach scientific literacy (disciplinary literacy) or improve your students reading comprehension and analysis skills.
- Some students work faster than others and you would like an interesting extension activity for your faster-moving students to keep them learning and engaged.

The Solution
This fully editable, NO PREP reading comprehension article is composed of relevant, applicable and engaging reading activities which can be used to:
• introduce your topic
• improve your students literacy skills
• improve your students reading comprehension and scientific literacy skills
• improve your student's analysis skills
• provide an extension activity to students who move at a faster pace
• provide extra credit to students in need
• measure your students literacy skills

Furthermore, this resource works very well as an emergency substitute plan as it will keep your students on task and focused while you are away.

This resource will take your students between 30-60 minutes to complete and includes a variety of questions. An answer key is also included for your reference.


You might also be interested in the articles below and if you don't find what you are looking for, send me an email with your topic. If it is made, I'll send it to you free of charge. devon@teachwithfergy.com

Physical Sciences
• Energy Use and Conservation
• Why is the Sky Blue?

Health and Wellbeing
• Concussions
• The Common Cold
• Allergies
• Cancer
• Viruses
• The Cardiovascular System
• Vaccines
• Blood Types
• The Nervous System
• Asthma and Asthma Attacks
• Acne

• Invasive Species
• Urban Sprawl
• Food Webs
• Why Leaves Change Color In The Fall
• The Effects of Pollution
• Endangered Species
• Animal Adaptations
• Biodiversity
• The Water Cycle
• The Seasons and What Causes Them
• Nocturnal Animals
• Climate Change

Natural Disasters and Weather
• Earthquakes
• Hurricanes
• Tornadoes
• How Weather Works
• Lightning
• Thunderstorms
• Why The Wind Blows
• Climate Change


Praise For My Other Reading Comprehension Resources:

"I teach middle school science and need to include informational text in my classroom. These readings are great for independent reading for my grade level and upper-level readers. The articles address CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RST.6-8.1 (Citing specific textual evidence to support analysis of science and technical texts.) and CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RST.6-8.10 (By the end of grade 8, read and comprehend science/technical texts in the grades 6-8 text complexity band independently and proficiently.). The leveled questions allow you to subtly assign the questions to different ability students working in a group.
Topics are relevant to the students and current. Graphics draw the students into the article.
I'm going to have one printed and waiting in for my substitute folder too!

"Thanks for putting together a wonderful resource."

"I teach Special Education high school science in Maryland in a special school for children with learning disabilities/Autism. I liked the readings and I think students could relate to the topics. I know these are too high a reading level for most of my students and I would read it out loud and highlight the important information together. I would not be able to use the higher order thinking questions (which I like) with these kids. For my high students (very few of these in my school :), I really like these especially how you noted where you got the information which if they were inclined, they could go back to the original source. I like that you have scaffolded the questions and I would only be able to use these with a handful of students, but I think in a regular high school classroom (I spent many years in regular ed) these are spot on. Thank you for sharing."


Each summary is rich with age appropriate content (grades 5-7) and is 1-1.5 pages long (13-font). Following each are 5-8 questions along with the answer key, which will help guide your students understanding. The questions include information-based questions straight from the article as well as more open-ended thinking questions which provide an extension for the learning.

How this product will help your students:
- Improve their scientific and disciplinary literacy skills
- Improve their reading comprehension and scientific knowledge
- Give them insights into important scientific concepts
- Provide an extension activity for your faster moving/more gifted students

How this product will help you:
- Allow you to meet the NGSS, TEKS and Common Core Standards
- Provide you with a concise introduction to your topic
- Provide you with an engaging and easy to leave substitute plan which will keep your students engaged and on task
- Prove you a means of measuring your students' literacy skills

We don't spend enough time teaching scientific literacy to our students. This is either because we don't have the resources to do so effectively or we don't have the time. However, teaching our students to become scientifically literate is vital if we want them to succeed in life. We need them to know about the world they live in and about the issues they face. Even issues as simple as the common cold are misunderstood and can lead to the misuse of antibacterial drugs eventually rendering them ineffective.
Total Pages
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
45 Minutes

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Why is the Sky Blue? - Science Reading Article - Grades 5-7
Why is the Sky Blue? - Science Reading Article - Grades 5-7
Why is the Sky Blue? - Science Reading Article - Grades 5-7
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