If you haven’t read The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate, you are in for a real treat. The story is told from the perspective of Ivan, a silver back gorilla in a journal-like format. The reader learns about Ivan’s past through flashbacks, his struggles in the present living in the small confined cage at the Exit 8 Big Top Mall and Video Arcade, and his dreams for the future. This post contains several teaching ideas to use with the book.
Throughout his life, Ivan lives in four different places. This anchor chart lists those places. For this chart, the class brainstormed details about each place Ivan lived. Students wrote details on sticky notes. The students then placed the sticky notes on the anchor chart in the correct locations. Continue Reading
My newest book unit Matilda contains a series of six lessons on writing a problem and solution essay. After I finished the book unit, I realized that I haven’t seen many activities on the web for teaching problems and solutions, so I thought I would do a bit of scrounging and pass along what I found.
Activities to use with From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler
Activity #1 ~ Metropolitan Museum of Art
The Metropolitan Museum of Art has devoted an entire issue of their newsletter Museum Kids to try to answer some of the many questions they receive about the connection between the book From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler and the museum. You can download it by clicking on the cover below.Continue Reading
I am extremely excited to have M.C. Finotti, author of Paintbrushes & Arrows: A Story of Two Girls in St. Augustine in 1875, guest blogging today. Her book is a rare gift. Teachers will love how it weaves real people and events in a heartwarming story.
Spinning Wheels is a fun classroom learning activity that gets students out of their seats and moving around while they master skills.
The activity requires students to wear or hold up a card with a word or phrase. Since I use the inexpensive lanyards for grouping students, (You can read about how I group students into cooperative learning groups here.) I have students place the cards with phrases inside their lanyards on top of their names. Continue Reading
Out of My Mind by Sharon Draper is an amazing story about an eleven year old girl with cerebral palsy. When Melody is quite young, she goes over to her next door neighbor’s house, Mrs. V. Mrs. V doesn’t pamper Melody as her parents do. She teaches her how to roll over and scoot. She realizes that Melody is extremely bright, but her physical limitations prevent her from communicating. Because of this Mrs. V decides to use a communication board to teach Melody a number of words. While this is a major breakthrough, the communication is very limited.
Communication Board Activity
With this activity, students can experience some of the frustration Melody has when she tries to let others know what she needs.Continue Reading