A Wrinkle in Time Activities

A Wrinkle in Time Anchor Chart Paired with Writing Activity

From the first line of the book . . . “It was a dark and stormy night,” until the last line. . . “But they never learned what it was that Mrs. Whatsit, Mrs. Who, and Mrs. Which had to do, for there was a gust of wind, and they were gone,” A Wrinkle in Time is an exciting story.

In this book three children, Meg, Charles Wallace, and Calvin, go on a rescue mission to save Meg and Charles Wallace’s father from the Darkness that has trapped him. The children are helped by three witches, Mrs. Who, Mrs. Whatist, and Mrs. Which who provide gentle advice through thoughtful quotes: Continue Reading

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Strategies for Teaching Context Clues

Context Clues Anchor Chart

Introducing Context Clues

By turning the study of context clues into game-like activities, students will learn techniques for figuring out new words. Games make the lesson fun and less of a challenge. I like to begin my study with one of the following activities:

  • Mystery Objects ~ Place objects into lunch-sized brown paper bags. Call on one student to describe the contents of the bag while others in the class try to guess what the object may be. I usually do this with four to five objects. Follow this activity by discussing how this activity is similar to figuring out unknown words in a sentence.
  • Cloze Activity ~ Provide sentences with one word missing. Turn completing the sentences into a competition by allowing students only a minute or two to complete the missing words. See which student can fill in the most blanks in the specified amount of time. End the activity with a discussion of how students were able to know what the missing word should be. Compare this activity to coming across an unfamiliar word while reading.

Examples of Cloze Sentences: Continue Reading

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Frosty vs. Rudolph

Free Compare and Contrast Christmas uses the high interest stories of

Frosty vs. Rudolph

I love Christmas! The students’ excitement is magical 

‘The TEST’

Early last year as I was listening to the requirements of our writing assessment . . . . read two informational texts . . . . compare and contrast . . . . write a narrative based on the texts . . . . I decided that I would use the magic of Christmas to practice for the test. After all, half the battle of students performing well on this type of assessment is to build up confidence levels. I thought, “Wouldn’t it be fun to compare the stories behind Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and Frosty the Snowman?” I began researching. Wow! I hit a gold mine. I was surprised to discover that the story behind Rudolph is heartwarming, and there is definitely a connection between the two back stories. Continue Reading

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Sound Devices ~~ Alliteration, Rhyme, and Onomatopoeia

Rhyme and Alliteration PowerPoint


Sound Devices ~~ Alliteration, Rhyme, and Onomatopoeia

As I was looking through some lesson plans to decide what to share in this post, I came across two lesson plans I had created for my 2012/2013 school year observations. Since I wasn’t sure which class the observation would take place, I planned lessons for an entire day. I am including materials from my fourth grade language arts lesson “Alliteration and Rhyme” and my fifth grade language arts lesson “Onomatopoeia and Alliteration.” You will notice that both lessons have many of the same activities. I often planned for unannounced observations this way, as it was so much less time consuming. Also, these lessons are based on the Tennessee Student Performance Indicators (SPIs). Since the PowerPoint presentations are not locked, you can easily change the pages to your state standards or to the Common Core Standards. Continue Reading

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Christmas Activities

Free Compare and Contrast Printable Activities

Christmas Activities

With Christmas right around the corner, students are getting excited. I have found the best way to keep students under control at this time of year is to keep them busy with fun, educational activities.

Here are two free Christmas resources you may wish to give a try this holiday season. Continue Reading

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Strategies for Teaching Inference

Duck and Turtles Photo - Great for an Inference Lesson

Introducing Inference

One great way to teach inference is to use pictures. National Geographic is a great source for finding photos.

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Teaching Cause and Effect

Cause and Effect

Teaching Cause and Effect

Teaching cause and effect can be both fun and a little challenging. Students catch on pretty quickly when I tell them the effect is what happened and the cause is why it happened. [After a few times of repeating this, I shorten the statement to “what and why.”] I follow this with several everyday examples: Continue Reading

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