Asking and answering questions is a key skill for second graders in comprehending informational text.  It's vital in order for students to understand what they are reading.  I love teaching this using the mentor texts from the What If You Had Animal... series.  Since we used the ones about teeth and ears in first grade, in second grade we used What If You Had an Animal Tongue? as our mentor text.  In this post, I will share how I break this standard down in a week long interactive read aloud.


What If You Had an Animal Tongue? Interactive Read Aloud Lessons


Asking and answering questions grade 2 activities, anchor chart, and craft


Asking and answering questions grade 2 activities, anchor chart, and craft

I always begin my interactive read alouds by front-loading students will 3-4 vocabulary words.  (If you use my lessons, I always give you the explicit instructional routine to follow and these cards.) I have found that my students are more successful when they have access to these words, the definition, a picture, and the word used in a sentence.  We also assign motions to our words to aid in long term retention of the meaning of these words.  We go over the vocabulary at the start of the lesson each day.

Asking and answering questions grade 2 activities, anchor chart, and craft

Asking and answering questions grade 2 activities, anchor chart, and craft

As with any lesson, you want to be extra prepared ahead of time.   I have included lesson plans for each day with a scripted mini-lesson, text-dependent questions to ask, a daily task, and an exit ticket.  I like to print the questions on sticky notes and place them in the book for when I do the read aloud.  This helps so much!

Asking and answering questions grade 2 activities, anchor chart, and craft

We focus on asking questions using these six question words:  who, what, when, where, why, and how.  I created this anchor chart to use throughout the week.  Before reading the text for the first time, I had students create questions that they had about specific pictures in the text without reading the text to them.  I chose to model this first with different pictures in the text.

Asking and answering questions grade 2 activities, anchor chart, and craft

Afterwards, I showed them this picture from the text.  They had to come up with a question about the photo and another about the illustration.  After they came up with questions and shared with their partners, I removed the sticky notes and read the text.  If they heard the answer to their question, they recorded it under the flap.  If they didn't, they circled it.  We also had a discussion about authors not always answering our questions and how we could do further research to find the answers to our questions.  

I did not read the whole text on day one.

Asking and answering questions grade 2 activities, anchor chart, and craft

On day two, I copied a pair of pages for each set of partners in my room on different animals from the text.  I covered the words with sticky notes.  Students had to create two questions with their partner about the photo and illustration and one question independently.

Asking and answering questions grade 2 activities, anchor chart, and craft

Afterwards, I read the whole text to the students.  They again had to listen for answers to their questions.

Asking and answering questions grade 2 activities, anchor chart, and craft

On day 3, we focused on being text detectives and hunting for key details in the text and the photos and illustrations.

Asking and answering questions grade 2 activities, anchor chart, and craft

On day four, we made text-to-self connections.  Students had to choose an animal tongue they wished to have and why.  They also made these crafts with the tongue they had chosen.  These are so fun to read!

Asking and answering questions grade 2 activities, anchor chart, and craft

We are always working our way towards completing a culminating task by the end of the week.  This week, students had to write an article about a specific animal from the text.  I had them include text features, while making the heading a question and the text below the heading the answer to their question.  You could assign different animals or have the whole class write an article on the same animal.  You will want to make sure they have access to the text they will use to write their article.  I use this along with a comprehension assessment, which is included, for assessment and grades.

Asking and answering questions grade 2 activities, anchor chart, and craft

These are the posters I use for reference throughout the week, paired with the anchor chart from above.

I always use the following slides to guide my lessons.  I put them in Google Slides TM this year for you to use if you would like.  You can also use them to assign tasks to your distance learners.  All tasks are already uploaded and ready to go!  I wanted to make it easier for you to plan, so everything is planned for you and ready to go!

Asking and answering questions grade 2 digital activities, anchor chart, and craft

Asking and answering questions grade 2 digital activities, anchor chart, and craft

Asking and answering questions grade 2 digital activities, anchor chart, and craft

Thank you for reading and stopping by!  If you would like any of the resources from above, click the images above or any of the resources below!

Asking and answering questions grade 2 activities, anchor chart, and craft

Asking and answering questions grade 2 digital activities, anchor chart, and craft

Asking and answering questions grade 2 activities, anchor chart, and craft




















Hello friends!  I am sharing today how I teach students to determine the meaning of unknown words and phrases in a nonfiction text relevant to a grade 2 topic or subject area.  Did you know that students need to be able to understand upwards of 95% of the meaning of words in a text to comprehend that text?  That's a lot!  We know that when our students are independently reading a nonfiction text, they are going to encounter unknown words.  They need the tools and strategies in their tool belts to be able to determine the meaning of those unknown words.  Today, I will share some strategies that I teach my students to tackle those unknown words in nonfiction text.

(This post may contain affiliate links.)


Determine the meaning of unknown words and phrases strategies, posters, and activities.


This standard is perfect for integrating your science or social studies standards.  In Tennessee, we have a second grade science standard in which students need to be able to classify animals based on their physical characteristics.  So I pulled these two books, Let's Classify Animals and Animal Classification.  I wanted to expose them to two different texts, so that they could get that extra practice of determining the meaning of unknown words and phrases.

Determine the meaning of unknown words and phrases strategies, posters, and activities.

You will find in the lesson plans below that I spent two days on one text and three on the other text.  I always do a mini-lesson before the read aloud for the day, in which I teach the strategy or skill that we will be practicing that day.  I didn't want to overwhelm them with too many strategies, so I only taught two during this unit.  As far as my lesson plans go, I also include text-dependent questions (on sticky notes, too) and an after reading daily task, including an exit ticket.  The questions focus on key ideas and details, craft and structure, and integration of knowledge and ideas for that text.

Determine the meaning of unknown words and phrases strategies, posters, and activities.

Determine the meaning of unknown words and phrases strategies, posters, and activities.


This is the anchor chart I use throughout the week.  I wanted them to look at the strategy like a puzzle.  You have to have all the pieces in order to determine the meaning of the unknown word.  You can laminate this so that you can use it throughout the week for different words or phrases.


Determine the meaning of unknown words and phrases strategies, posters, and activities.

Here's a little peek at the vocabulary words from the unit.  I always explicitly teach these on day one, and then go over each day of the unit.  

Determine the meaning of unknown words and phrases strategies, posters, and activities.

Here are the strategies that I teach students.  I made these posters for students to reference throughout the week.

Determine the meaning of unknown words and phrases strategies, posters, and activities.


Let's talk about the strategies I focused on.  The first one is called, "Look Around."  If you are a Hamilton fan, you can sing this strategy!  Lol!  It's from the song, The Schuyler Sisters.  Usually authors of a nonfiction text will stick the meaning of an important word around it.  You have to "look around" for the meaning or for clues to the meaning.

The other strategy I use is called, "Text Features to the Rescue!"  We have already learned about text features, so they know how to use them.  Often times, there will be clues or the meaning of the word in the text features, such as in the glossary, a photo, a label, or a caption.

Determine the meaning of unknown words and phrases strategies, posters, and activities.

I also like to always include a craft or directed drawing, so students can make these magnifying glasses.  I forgot to mention that I told students at the beginning of the week that they were going to be scientific word detectives.  You could even give them magnifying glasses to use all week.  In this craft, they have to classify and sort animals.

I also use these slides to guide my instruction during all of my lessons.  They are in Google Slides TM, so you can assign them to students you may be distance learners.  If you are using these in the classroom, I find it helpful to download them in PowerPoint to my desktop for easy access each day.

Determine the meaning of unknown words and phrases strategies, posters, and digital activities.

Determine the meaning of unknown words and phrases strategies, posters, and digital activities.

Determine the meaning of unknown words and phrases strategies, posters, and digital activities.

These are all in my TPT store and sold separately or in bundles.  I will link each on the images above and below.  Thank you so much for reading about how I teach students to determine the meaning of unknown words and phrases!  I hope it was helpful!

Determine the meaning of unknown words and phrases strategies, posters, and digital activities.

Determine the meaning of unknown words and phrases strategies, posters, and digital activities.

Bundles:

Determine the meaning of unknown words and phrases strategies, posters, and digital activities.


Determine the meaning of unknown words and phrases strategies, posters, and digital activities.









 

March 2nd is one of my favorite days in the classroom!  One of my main goals as a teacher is to instill a love of reading and a love of books in my students.  Read Across America Day is so important to us, because it's a day for us to celebrate that love of reading.  We use the day to do all things related to reading and just have fun with one another by reading together. My school lets us dress as our favorite book character, and we can have volunteer readers come in to read to our students.   I have been meaning for years to create one resource that contained all of the activities for a fun day of reading celebration, and I finally got around to it this year!  So, here are some ideas of activities that you can incorporate into your classroom, too!


Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas

(This post may contain affiliate links.)

Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas

Last year, I dressed up as Darla from What Should Darla Do?  It was so fun being Darla, but I almost wasn't able to get the pink out of my hair!  (If you have blonde hair, beware of temporary colors like this.  It will stain your hair!  My hairdresser had to get it out.  Haha!) Many of my students also dressed up.  My favorites were Junie B. Jones and Warren from Junie B. Loves Handsome Warren.  They were so cute!  Our P.E. teacher also dressed up as Junie B.  and came down to chase our very own Warren.  It was so fun!


Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas

When students come in, I would already have these BINGO boards printed and on their desks, along with the bookmarks below.  As they read, they will color the box that they completed.  They can complete this when you have them do independent reading throughout the day.

Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas

Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas



Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas

One of the first activities to complete will be this bookshelf craft.  As they read books throughout the day, they will write the title of the book on the spines of these books.  This would make the cutest bulletin board!  They would be so fun in your classroom library!


Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas

I do different read alouds throughout the day.  I wanted students to have some sort of response to reading that was a review of previous skills and strategies taught.  The character portrait printable is perfect for reviewing describing characters.  Students draw a portrait of the main character and label the character with character traits.  The Dot is a great read aloud for this or any story about an artist!

Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas

This activity is one of my favorites!  I feel like when I do running records to students, they forget to go into more detail about the setting.  Setting Construction is a fun, hands-on way to practice describing the setting.  You could laminate the mats or put them in sheet protectors for easier clean up.  After reading a story, students will construct the setting with Play-Doh.  They will love getting to build!

Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas

Since it's a reading celebration, you have to have party hats!  After a read aloud, have students describe the problem and solution from the story on these hats.  They can then cut out the hat and attach it to a sentence strip.  Make it into a party hat they can wear around the school!

Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas

One final review of skills is with this party balloon craft.  Students will describe the major events from the beginning, middle, and end of the story.

Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas

I wanted to students to have another opportunity to have some hands-on fun with STEM.  Before this next activity, you may want to read a story related to STEM.  These two above are great ones, and in the digital slides, I embedded the story, Boxitects.  After the story, they will be given their own STEM challenge in which they will have to construct a reading fort for their bear using Q-tips and tape.  This is a fun one!  The digital slides contain a slide with the challenge instructions for students to see.


Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas

Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas


Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas

Last year, I started incorporating book reviews and recommendations into their independent reading.  This made all the difference!  They loved getting to share their favorite books with their friends, and it got them even more excited about book shopping!  You can have them fill this book review out after reading a book independently and then share with a friend.  I even hung these up in my classroom library for students to reference while they were book shopping.

Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas

I also had to include a response for nonfiction text, which my students were obsessed with.  After reading a nonfiction text, they go on a fact finding mission for the most interesting facts from the text.  Afterwards, have them share their finding with a friend.

Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas

After a read aloud and around snack time, you can do this activity: Popping Up a Good Read.  Have students fill out this template and paste to a paper lunch sack.  (There is also a nonfiction response included.). Fill the bag with popcorn and put students into groups.  Give one of the students these discussion cards to guide the discussion over the book read.  This is a fun want to incorporate a book club and snack into your day.

Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas

At the end of the day, I wanted students to have a certificate to take home to share with their families about what a fun day we had.  You can also make this into a portfolio to store all of their activities from the day.  I just took a large piece of 12x18 construction paper and folded it in half.  I then stapled the sides to make a portfolio with the certificate attached to the top.

Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas

Like I said earlier, I have included slides for the day.  You can use these to guide your day if you are teaching in-person.  If you are virtual, you can also use these to guide your day.  The reading response slides are also in there and ready to assign to virtual students.  Below are a few of the 27 slides that are included.

Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas

Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas

Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas

Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas

Thank you so much for reading about how we celebrate reading on Read Across America Day.  It's such a special day in our classroom!  You can click any of the images in this post to check out the Rowdy for Reading resource.  I would love to hear how you celebrate reading in your classroom!  Happy reading!

Read Across America ideas for school and reading celebration ideas