Grade: 3-5
Subject: 4 Blocks

#1127. guided reading SNAKES

4 Blocks, level: Elementary
Posted Fri Jun 25 20:33:49 PDT 1999 by deb (
doloma, south haven MI USA
Concepts Taught: guided reading


All About Rattlesnakes by Jim Arnosky 0-590-46795-6
Great Snakes! By Fay Robinson 0-590-26243-2
My Little Book of Snakes by Gina Ingoglia 0-307-02475-X
Snakes By Patricia Demuth 0-448-40513-X
Snakes By Golden Books 0-307-20402-2
Verdi By Janell Cannon 0-590-11749-1

SSR day one

Read aloud Verdi by Janell Cannon. I bought the tape with the story on it from Scholastic. It is definitely worth the money.

Show the kids all the snake books. I remind the kids that they are allowed to read these books during the SSR time.

The other days during SSR the kids pick books from book baskets and the teacher can read aloud snake books if she desires.

Guided Reading day one

I do a little introduction about snakes.

I put the books on different tables. I divide the kids into as many different book titles that I have available. Each child gets to picture walk, read a bit, and look at the books. Then I have the kids write down a first choice and a second choice and a third of the book they want to read. See book clubs pages 58-61 for better directions.

We predict what we will learn about (see teacher's guide to 4 blocks page 67) I try to get the kids to generate some of the following questions:
Where do snakes live?
What do snakes eat?
What are the names of snakes?
What are the special characteristics of snakes?
How do snakes move?
When do snakes.... eat, breed, die,...?
Why are snakes important to our environment?

Guided Reading day 2

I start a graphic organizer web (see page 70 in Teacher's Guide to 4 Blocks).

Help Environment

I assign book club books reminding the kids that the other books will be available for their use during SSR time.

For 20 minutes, the kids read the first section together. I look at the books and decide where each break should be. Then the kids work together to add to the graphic organizer. I have each group work on a group graphic organizer.

We gather the groups together and add to the class web.

Guided Reading day 3 and 4
I repeat day 2.

Focused Writing---- When we are done learning about snakes the children will be using "Safe Topic" Sentences to Write about Snakes.

Students will be pick one topic sentence from the following list:

Let me tell you about ______
Have you ever wondered about ______
Have you ever wondered why ______
I think was for many reasons.
I just learned facts about ______
Let me tell you how and are alike.
Let me tell you how and are different.
Many changes happen to as they grow.
People used to think , but now we know...

Partner one tells everything he knows about what was read. Switch. Partner two tells everything she knows about what was read. Pick a Safe Topic sentence. Write details from the snake books that was read.