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Nonfiction

Using Time for Kids to Learn About Bats

Informational Text, Nonfiction, Reading, Thinking Maps

We are very lucky and have a Time for Kids subscription for each class at our school.  Time for Kids is a great way to incorporate informational text, learn about text features, and write informational responses.  On Friday, we read the recent Time for Kids issue about bats. 

As we were reading, we talked about text features.  We spent time looking at the headings, fact box, glossary, photographs, and captions, and the kids are starting to pick up the text features on their own.  When we were done we started a circle map about bats and added the facts learned from Time for Kids. After adding those facts, we read an informational book about Bats. Then, we added more facts. The kiddos loved learning all of the cool things about bats and the pictures in both the article and book were awesome.

 

 

Day #8 – Nonfiction Text Features – Glossary

Nonfiction

For the last day of studying nonfiction text features, we learned about the glossary.  Day #2 of the blog posts has further instructions as to how I laid out each lesson.

Here is my teacher example:

 
 
Here are a few student examples:
 
 
 


Day #6 – Nonfiction Text Features – Labels

Nonfiction

For Day #6 of our Nonfiction studies, we focused on labels.  Again, I followed the lesson plan outline listed in Day #2.

Here’s my teacher example:

 
 
Here are a few student examples:
 
 
 
 
 


Day #5 – Nonfiction Text Features – Types of Print

Nonfiction

On Day #5, we focused on types of print in nonfiction books. We talked about words that were highlighted, written in a different color, bold, written in italics, and underlined. Again, for the lesson I followed the same layout as mentioned in the post about Day #2

Here is my teacher example:

 
 
Here are some student examples:
 
 
 


Day #4 – Nonfiction Text Features – Headings

Nonfiction

On Day #4 of our Nonfiction Text Features study, we focused on headings.  Again, we followed the same lesson format as listed in Day #2.

Here’s my teacher example:

 
 
 
Here are a few student examples:
 
 
 
 


Day #3 – Non-Fiction Text Features – Captions

Nonfiction

After Day 2 and learning about photographs, we moved on to captions. I followed the same layout for teaching this text feature as I explained in my previous post.

Here is my teacher example:

 
Here are the kid examples with our class definition and then a picture they drew of the example they found in their own non-fiction book:
 
 
 

Day #2 – Non-Fiction Text Features – Photographs

Nonfiction

Sorry for the delay in posting.  Things have been crazy busy at school and home

After the first day introducing non-fiction books and giving kids a chance to explore, we started learning about text features. The first feature we focused on was photographs.  For each text feature, I found a few examples in about 3-4 different non-fiction books to show the kids. I also found some great non-fiction text feature posters on TeachersPayTeachers that explained the definitions in kid friendly terms and also had another example. After showing examples and discussing what the text feature meant, I gave the kids a chance to look through their book bins and find their own examples. Once they found an example, they put their name on a post-it and marked their page with it.  We had time to pair share so the kids could share the examples of photographs that they found with each other.  Then, I showed them how to fill out their Non-Fiction Conventions Notebook.

See examples below….

Here is the Non-Fiction Book with the cover. I used construction paper for the front and back cover and the inside had 7 blank pages with labels already on it so the kids didn’t have to write the feature in there.

 
 
Here’s my example for the photographs page…
 
Here is a student example. They copied my definition and then they drew their example that they found in their non-fiction book.
 
 

Day #1 – Nonfiction/Informational Text Study

Debbie Miller, Informational Text, Nonfiction

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.

Book Bins:

 

 
Exploration Time:
 
 
 
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.