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Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs
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Grandpa tells the story of Chewandswallow, a tiny town where food falls from the sky for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. It’s a great place to live (and eat) until the weather gets out of control and the townspeople are forced to move away.After reading the story, have each student cut out the umbrella canopy pattern and handle cards. Have the child glue the canopy to the top of a 12" x 18" sheet of paper. Next, guide him to arrange the handle cards in order below the canopy. Reread the story and lead each student to confirm the placement of his cards before he glues them in place.
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idea



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Doreen Rappaport entwines the words of Dr. King with her own to introduce readers to the fascinating life of the civil rights leader. Caldecott-winning illustrations of watercolor and paper-cut collage beautifully enhance the biography. A timeline and list of additional resources make this book a good research tool.Even though Martin’s big words had few letters, the ideas behind them were huge. Discuss with students some of Martin’s big words (freedom, peace, together, dream, love). Ask students to explain why these words were considered “big.” Next, lead the class in brainstorming other words that might be considered big. Assign each student a word and then provide him with an 8" x 8" white construction paper square. Have the student write his word in the middle of his square. Then direct him to search through magazines to find pictures that represent the big idea of his word. Have the student use the magazine pictures, along with his own drawings, to create a collage. After the student has completed his collage, have him glue his white square onto a 9" x 9" square of colorful construction paper. Combine the completed squares to create a classroom quilt.

Two-Way Street
RL.2.5
Describe the overall structure of a story, including describing how the beginning introduces the story and the ending concludes the action.
With this partner activity, students take two trips to the same destination—a better understanding of a common story. Give each duo a copy of the map and two different-color Unifix cubes. Have each child place his cube on a different car. The student with Car 1 moves his cube along his retelling road, pausing at each prompt to provide that information from the story. Then the student moving Car 2 takes a turn along her road in the same manner.

Punctuation Pointer
L.3.1b
Form and use regular and irregular plural nouns.
L.3.2d
Form and use possessives.
To begin, have each child cut a simple apostrophe shape from a half sheet of paper and tape the apostrophe to his pencil (pointer). Next, direct students to sit in a circle. Name a plural or possessive noun that ends in s and use it in a sentence. Direct a child to say the first letter of the word; then have each successive child to his left add another letter to spell the word. If the word uses an apostrophe, a student holds up his pointer to signal its place. When the word has been spelled, have the whole class repeat the spelling in unison, with every child holding up his pointer if the apostrophe is needed.


book cover
book cover
Flat Stanley
Flat Stanley


One morning, Stanley Lambchop wakes up to discover that he has been flattened by a bulletin board that fell on him. At first, Stanley enjoys the adventure and benefits of being flat. But he soon realizes that he just wants to be “regular.”
For this comprehension-building activity, have each student fold a 6" x 9" piece of construction paper in half and trim it to make two lightbulb shapes. (Provide a template if desired.) Next, have the student cut two sheets of lined paper into fourths, staple the pieces between the lightbulb cutouts, and trim the lined paper to match the cutouts’ shape. Help students brainstorm a list of problems from the story. Then have each student summarize, in her lightbulb-shaped notepad, the story’s problems and Stanley’s creative solutions. For a fun extension, have students read other books about Stanley and keep track of all his bright ideas.
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idea art

Reading Brings Riches

RI.3.2

Determine the main idea of a text; recount the key details and explain how they support the main idea.

RI.3.4

Determine the meaning of general academic and domain-specific words and phrases in a text relevant to a grade 3 topic or subject area.

RI.3.5

Use text features and search tools (e.g., key words, sidebars, hyperlinks) to locate information relevant to a given topic efficiently.

To begin, direct each student to write the title of his book and its author on a copy of his treasure chest pattern. Then have him color it and cut it out. Next, instruct the child to cut from construction paper three jewel or coin shapes. Have him label each cutout with a different nonfiction element shown and list the corresponding information. The child glues the cutouts to the treasure chest and, if needed, fills any empty space with unlabeled coins and jewels. He refers to his project as he shares an oral report about his informational text. If desired, post the completed projects on a display titled "Reading Brings Riches." As an alternative, enlarge the pattern for each child and have him cut five jewel or coin shape! s. Instruct the child to label each cutout with a different nonfiction element shown and list the corresponding information on each.




book cover
book cover
Shiloh
Shiloh


Money is tight for Marty Preston and his family. So when a skinny beagle follows Marty home, he knows he can’t keep it. He reluctantly returns the dog to its abusive owner. But the dog, Shiloh, finds its way back to Marty. This time, Marty can’t give up the dog, and he does whatever he can to keep Shiloh.
With this jigsaw activity, students help each other analyze the story’s main characters. Copy and cut apart a set of the character cards for every four students. The students in each group place the cards facedown. Each child takes a card and then forms a group with other students who have drawn the same character card. In each new group, the students discuss the card’s questions from their character’s point of view. Next, each child sketches on his card a picture of the character. Then each student rejoins his original group; the members discuss answers to the cards’ questions from each character’s point of view.