Category: Literacy

Teaching Character Traits with Graphic Organizers

Learn about character traits in literature. Check out several teaching ideas. Download this free activity for students.

Teaching character traits is a must. When students know what details to look for in characters in literature, they will better understand the text and will become better writers as well. This post provides student-friendly definitions. It also gives some teaching ideas with handouts to try out in the classroom.

Defining Characters

When writing a story, an author usually begins with physical descriptions of the characters. The author must then go a step further to describe the personality of each of the characters. The characters need to have both positive and negative qualities to make them seem realistic. Good authors do not simply list character traits. They show the personalities of the characters through actions. Continue Reading

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How to Teach Perspective

Check out these ways to teach perspective in literature including free downloadable activities.

Although teachers often use the terms point of view and perspective interchangeably, there are differences.

The point of view focuses on who is the narrator of the story. Continue Reading

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Story Mapping

Learn about story mapping. Check out several teaching ideas. Download this free activity for students.

Story mapping is a strategy that uses graphic organizers to help students break down the text of a novel or short story. These visual representations help students examine different components of the story. Creating a story map improves students’ comprehension because they can more easily visualize the framework of a story.

Common Core

Creating a story map helps students practice a large number of Common Core skills as well. Continue Reading

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Context Clues Practice and Activities

This context clues lesson includes a free organizer and digital resource. 4th, 5th, and 6th graders will love these fun activities. This lesson covers the definition with examples appropriate for upper elementary students.

In contrast context clues, an antonym for the word is given in the text. Words like although, however, and not-this-but may signal contrast clues.

Example #1 Continue Reading

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Teaching Activities for Root Words

This vocabulary lesson on root words includes a free organizer and digital resource. 4th, 5th, and 6th graders will love these fun activities. This lesson covers the definitions of vit/viv/bio, grad/gress, duc/duct, cur/curs/cours, pon/pose/posit, and man/manu with examples appropriate for upper elementary students.

By learning root words, students can better understand language. Learning just a few root words can increase word knowledge ten-fold. This post includes both free materials and ideas to make learning fun. Begin with this idea…

Root words are often associated with trees. Make a root word tree by drawing a tree shape. Near the base of the tree, write a root word and its meaning. In the branches of the tree, write as many words as you can think of that are created using the root word. Continue Reading

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Teaching Suffixes Activities and Ideas

This vocabulary lesson on suffixes includes a free organizer and digital resource. 4th, 5th, and 6th graders will love these fun activities. This lesson covers the definition and spelling rules for -able/-ible and -ion/-ation/-sion/-tion suffixes appropriate for upper elementary students.

Are you looking for some activities for teaching suffixes? Check out these free materials including activities for Google Slides, videos, anchor charts, and PowerPoints.

Teaching students some common suffixes can increase their vocabulary tremendously. The suffixes -s/-es, -ed, -ing, -ly, -er/-or, -ion/-tion/-ation/-tion, and -ible/-able account for 72 percent of suffixed words. Teaching these 7 suffixes is a must. This first activity goes over the rules for using variations of -ible/-able and -ion. Continue Reading

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Teaching Prefixes Activities and Ideas

This includes a free organizer and digital resource. 4th, 5th, and 6th graders will love these fun activities. This lesson covers the definition with examples appropriate for upper elementary students.

English is a mix of several languages including French, Italian, Greek and Latin, Vietnamese and so on. This makes the number of words linguists estimate the English language to have extremely large…approximately one million words. About 170,000 of these words are in current use. The average adult English speaker has a vocabulary between 20,000 to 35,000 words. Ninety-five percent of everyday writing and speech in newspapers, most books, movies, etc. use only about 3,000 words. So…how do we prepare our students for college entrance exams when everyday life exposes them to such a narrow list of vocabulary words? —- We teach students prefixes, suffixes, and Greek and Latin roots.

To prevent readers from becoming lost in a tackle of links going all over the Internet to each activity that I mention in the post, I have created this pdf file with links to all prefix activities or resources.  Continue Reading

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