So I was so excited for today’s first day of informational text and it went better than I could have imagined. The kids really got into it and it was so fun seeing them so excited about learning. As they were looking through their nonfiction book piles they couldn’t stop talking about all the neat things they saw. There was a lot of “Miss V, come look at this!” What more could I ask for!
For our first day of nonfiction/informational text study, I followed Debbie Miller’s plan that she laid out in her book, Reading with Meaning. Before even introducing text features or nonfiction conventions, she suggests giving the kids a chance to explore. So, on each table I had a bin of nonfiction books. There were sports books, animal books, weather books, truck books, social studies books, etc. I allowed the kids about five to ten minutes just to explore.
Then, after exploration time, I brought them down to the carpet to talk about asking questions. I started off by asking if any of them had questions that came up as they were looking at their informational text. Most students said they did. Then, I showed them the index cards and explained that the index cards could be used as a place to write down their questions or things they are wondering about as they explore nonfiction (another Debbie Miller idea – wonder cards). Then, as we learn about informational text we can later answer those questions. The kids loved this! I gave them another ten minutes to write down questions they had and they got busy.
Below are some examples of questions they came up with:
Why do some animals have lots of legs?
Does wind move clouds?
Why do dolphins jump over the water?
Tomorrow we are going to dive into text features starting with photographs. I’ll update on that lesson tomorrow night.