Contract for Grade--Spring 2000 : LUSENET : M.Ed./International Falls : One Thread

Lisa West

Contract for an A Grade

Second Semester

Whats New in Childrens Literature Workshop

February 4, 2000

Every year the Bureau of Education and Research sponsors a workshop entitled  Whats New in Childrens Literature. The workshop introduces the new books that are available, which are appropriate for kindergarten through sixth grade. I attended this year and was amazed at the large variety of new books, and how the presenter, Dr. Peggy Sharp, was familiar with nearly every one. Dr. Sharp presented the books along with ideas and activities that would enhance enjoyment as well as reach learning objectives for other curriculum areas. I chose three books to create lesson plans for. They are as follows:



Dave Ross

Activity Description- I would use the book Hugs as an introduction to a language and writing activity for first graders sometime before Valentines Day. The book describes the various kinds of hugs using humorous, descriptive terminology (Example: Mommy hugs are squeezy, sick hugs are sneezy!) I would read the book using an animated voice to capture the students interest. Next I would brainstorm other types of hugs that were not included in the story that the author could have included. I would record the ideas on a word map for all of the students to see. Then I would have each student choose an idea that was shared, or their own idea of what kind of hug to write about. No two could be the same. The students would then be given heart stationery to write and illustrate their additions to the hug book. I would bind the pages into our own classroom book of HUGS!

Ross, Dave. A Book of Hugs. Scholastic, New York, 1999.

Appropriateness: This activity is very appropriate for first graders. They express themselves through drawing and are learning to write complete sentences. It is a fun activity that engages their emotions and encourages creativity.

Correlation to Seminar-This activity is a way to have fun with a book and engage students in the elements of a funny story. It is an excellent model for creative writing and shows students how much fun they can have with descriptive language as well as illustrations. Dr. Sharp encouraged this type of creativity in her seminar.

Objectives-The students will listen to the story A Book of Hugs by Dave Ross. They will brainstorm ideas for different kinds of hugs using other descriptive terms. They will choose one to illustrate and write a complete sentence about. They will use capitalization and punctuation and express a complete thought. The descriptions would be compiled and made into a class book.

Quality of Activities-Higher level thinking skills are used in this activity as students transfer the ideas from the story to their own hug descriptions. Creativity, humor and relating one idea to another would be used in composing an appropriate sentence for this class book. Sentence structure would need to be understood in order to write a complete thought, using a noun and an adverb.

Evaluation and Assessment- I would observe whether or not the students are interested and involved in this activity by their attention to the story and participation in the brainstorming session. It would be important that the students keep the flow of the story A _____hug is ________. A noun and an adverb would need to be used. I would expect that the illustration would go with the sentence. The sentence would need to be a complete thought using proper capitalization and punctuation.

When Sophie Gets Angry-Really, Really Angry


Molly Bang

Activity Description for Grade 1: When young children get angry it can be very frightening and upsetting. Children need to understand that anger is a natural emotion, but there are strategies to deal with anger that are helpful. I would introduce the activity by gathering students in a circle and asking volunteers to role-play various emotions (happy, sad, surprised, scared, and angry). I would then ask how many children ever felt angry. I would generate discussion about what kinds of things can make people feel angry and make a word map of the different responses. Next I would introduce the story, When Sophie Gets Angry, Really, Really Angryby Molly Bang which is about a little girl who becomes angry and how she expresses it and deals with it in a very healthy manner.

Once the story is over, we would discuss how Sophie looked when she was angry and what she did to help calm herself down. I would ask for other ideas for calming oneself down and we would make a word map of those ideas. I would then have the children take a large piece of white paper and fold it in half. The students would draw on one side a picture of themselves angry and on the other side a picture of themselves happy/or calmed down. Each child would then write a sentence or two about what they would do to calm down if they were angry. We would then share all of the pictures and ideas the next day during our circle time. The pictures and sentences would be on display in the classroom or made into a class book to be shared all throughout the year. Later, as a follow-up on feelings and emotions, I would read the book My Many Colored Days by Dr. Seuss, which associates colors with various emotions.

Bang, M. When Sophie Gets Angry, Really, Really Angry. The Blue Sky Press, New York, 1999.

Seuss, Dr., My Many Colored Days. Knopf, Alfred A., New York, 1996.

Appropriateness-This activity is very appropriate for first graders because developmentally children at this level are at the beginning stages of logical reasoning. They can begin to recognize the appropriateness or inappropriateness of their behavior and learn systems and approaches to dealing with emotions. Drawing and simple sentences are an appropriate means of expression for this age. Drawing at this level has a significant influence on story development and students are learning to write complete sentences. The time of year I use this activity will determine whether or not the 1st graders write their own sentences. The first half of the year I may start the sentence for them and have them fill in a word or two. By the second half of the year they can write their own complete sentences.

Correlation to Seminar-The story and related activities demonstrate to children that the emotion of anger is one experienced by all people. The activities help students understand the story better and identify with the main character. It was a subject that young children can relate to. These are things Dr. Sharp talked about in her seminar.

Objectives-The students will brainstorm different emotions. They will listen to the story about a child named Sophie who experiences the emotion of anger. On one side of a folded piece of white drawing paper they will use markers to draw a picture depicting themselves happy, and on the other side, a picture of themselves angry. On a piece of lined paper, using a pencil, they will write at least one complete sentence describing an appropriate way to handle their anger. They will demonstrate proper punctuation and capitalization, as well as the expression of a complete thought. The teacher will attach the sentence to the drawing.

Quality of Activities-The interesting part of these activities is that the students will bring their varied backgrounds and experiences to share with the group. The children have an opportunity to learn from the story as well as from classmates who share their ideas of appropriate ways to deal with strong emotions. Each child has an opportunity to express him or herself through writing and drawing. This lesson opens the door for discussions on other emotions and how to deal appropriately with them. I believe these are valuable activities. Higher level thinking skills are used as children transfer ideas from the story to their own experiences and potential experiences.

Evaluation and Assessment- I would evaluate this activity by observing who is actively participating and who is not. I would attempt to draw those students into the discussion. I would check the drawings to see if they accurately depict the emotions of happy and angry and consider the time and effort the students put into creating them. I would check the students sentences for capitalization, periods, and completeness of thought.

David McPhail


Author Study

Activity Description-I would begin this activity with a display of books by David McPhail in the back of the room and by reading the stories aloud to the students over a period of a week. The students would be invited to read the books during their free time. David McPhail is a featured author and illustrator as well as Caldecott award winner in our first grade basal reader. We would then read our basal reader passage, Lee Bennett Hopkins interviews David McPhail from the Silver Burdett and Ginn reading series. It describes how McPhail got started drawing. (He started to draw when he was two. He drew lots of pictures at home and at school on anything, including brown paper bags. His mother encouraged him. She liked his drawings and hung them up around the house. She told him she could be anything she wanted to be.) The next story in our basal reader that we would all read is a story written and illustrated by David McPhail, called Fix It. Later, I would then explain that they are to choose one of David McPhails books that they like the best and complete an I Love to Read book report, highlighting their favorite part of the book and illustrating the cover. (I would show them an example of a finished book report.) I would have the reports laminated and sent to the school library to be displayed on their tables. The purpose would be to share and encourage others to read books by David McPhail.


McPhail, David. Fix-It. Dutton, New York, 1987.

McPhail, David. The Bears Toothache. Little, Brown and Co., New York, 1988.

McPhail, David. Pigs Aplenty, Pigs Galore! Scholastic Inc., New York, 1988.

McPhail, David. If You Were My Bunny. Scholastic Inc., New York, 1996

McPhail, David. Mole Music. Henry Holte & Company, 1999.

Appropriateness- This activity is very appropriate for 1st graders. It expands upon and enriches the vocabulary and skills learned in the basal reader that go along with David McPhail and his stories. It is encouraging for them to read about authors and illustrators and find out how they got started. It is wonderful writing and revising practice and the children have a lot of incentive, knowing their work will be shared with other students.

Correlation to Seminar-This activity helps instill a love of reading among children. In learning about the author and illustrator it motivates them to want to read other books by that author. The activity offers choices and incentive, all of which Dr. Sharp discussed in her seminar.

Objectives-Students will study the author David McPhail. Students will read a variety of his books. Students will draft a book report for one of the chosen books. They will use correct capitalization and punctuation in their sentences, as well as their best handwriting. Students will go through the editing and revising process. Students will illustrate the cover of the book. Students will share their reports orally.

Quality of Activities- This activity provides for higher level thinking skills, as students read, interpret and transfer their knowledge. Students have choices and can use their creativity. The activity meets the needs for all learners at all ability levels.

Evaluation and Assessment-Students will be graded on their effort in the writing and illustrating process. I will take into consideration if they were able to follow directions and clearly communicate their thoughts on paper. I would ask students to reflect on their own work and tell me what they like about it and what they could improve on for next time.

-- Anonymous, April 18, 2000

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