Grade: Elementary
Subject: other

#2830. Balanced Literacy

, level: Elementary
Posted Mon Mar 17 12:44:20 PST 2003 by Jennifer Donnelly (
Pre-Service Teacher, Hauppauge
Materials Required: Attached
Activity Time: Approximately 2 weeks
Concepts Taught: Includes all components of a Balanced Literacy Program

Jennifer Donnelly
March 9, 2003

Physical Setup of Classroom:

- Students are seated in 4 groups facing each other.
- Teacher's desk is in the back right corner of the room.
- Large table is on the left corner in the back of the room.
- The library is located next to the windows by the computer center.
- Closets are on the wall next to the entrance.
- The classroom is decorated with students completed assignments, motivational posters, educational material, such as, maps, signs, diagrams, classroom rules, alphabet, calendar, etc.

Unit for 5th Grade:

Lesson #1:
Balanced Literacy Components -- "Interactive Reading and Reading Aloud."
English Language Arts -- "Standard 1: Language for Information and Understanding"
- The class will participate in reading "So You Want to be President?" by Judith St. George and David Small.
- The students will be seated in their chairs in a round circle facing each other with their books.
- The lesson will begin with a brief discussion of what they know about presidents?
(1) How many Presidents have represented the United States of America?
(2) How many can we name?
(3) Who was the first President of the United States of America?
(4) What year did the first President of the United States of America serve?
- The teacher will read the first two pages and request volunteers throughout the story, encouraging all to participate in either discussion of aloud reading.

Activity #1:
Students will participate in a group timeline project in their four group seating arrangement.

Using sequencing as an instructional process, the teacher will give each group 4 slices of paper, with timeline instructions written on them, to be put in order. The teacher's timeline will be hung above the board as an example.
- 1st Slice -- "A long scroll of paper"
- 2nd Slice -- "Ruler"
- 3rd Slice -- "Page 49-52 of the President book.
- 4th Slice -- "Colored Pencils"

- Helpers will distribute supplies.
- Students will be shown on the board how to measure and draw a straight line across the middle of the scroll of paper.
- Each student will measure and draw a number of feet of line.
- Every foot will require a small vertical line and a horizontal line to label the Presidents name and date of Presidency.
- The students will use a list on pages 49-52 of the President book as a guide to fill in information (names & dates)
- Color will be added.
- The four time lines will be hung up on the top of each wall and used throughout the year to fill in more information.

Balanced Literacy Component -- "Guided Writing, Independent Writing and Guided Reading"
English Language Arts -- "Standard 3: Language for Critical Analysis and Evaluation"
ISTE -- "Standard 1: Basic operation and concepts "
"Standard 5: Technology research tools"
1. Students will choose a favorite President and write a three-paragraph essay, using three
Resources -- "So You Want to Be President" book, Newspaper or magazine article from
home and an article from the Internet using the following list of websites:

2. Students will draw a picture of their favorite President or a picture representing their favorite President.
3. Calculating the student's favorite Presidents, the class will chart the top five presidents and tally and chart the four groups responses separately.


Group 1 Group 2 Group 3 Group 4
JFK 5 3 2 4
Lincoln 2 3 5 1
Washington 1 2 0 1
Clinton 0 0 1 2

4. A line graph will be made using the information from the above chart.

Teacher will set up graph with class and plot first group's numbers as an example -- the students will finish on their own, as I walk around to ensure students are progressing.

ISTE -- "Standard 2: Students develop positive attitudes toward technology uses that support lifelong learning, collaboration, personal pursuits, and productivity."
ISTE -- "Standard 5: Technology research tool"
ISTE -- "Standard 6: Technology problem-solving and decision-making tools"

1. Students will be asked to complete any unfinished research at home.
2. Complete their essay by Thursday.
3. Report the weather forecast by gathering the high and low temperatures of each day (using Newspapers or Internet) -- information will be used to make a chart and line graph.
4. Students will be asked to bring in supplies they may want to use to create a puppet of their favorite President. (Suggestions: Sock, sticks, or Styrofoam balls or any other materials not available in the classroom)
5. Using any resources, research and list the names of Presidents faces and buildings on money.

Activity #2:
Students will connect all assignments by developing a flip chart of their favorite President using their chart, graph, pictures, essay and references. This will enable the teacher to determine which students are up to date and which ones are lagging behind. The essay will be the last assignment to complete the flip chart.

Lesson #2:
Balanced Literacy Components -- "Independent Reading, Guided Reading, Shared Reading"
English Language Arts -- "Standard 3 -- Language for Literacy Response and Evaluation"
ISTE -- "Standard 3 -- Students use technology tools to enhance learning, increase productivity, and promote creativity."
- Seated in a circle, a class discussion on research articles and facts will be discussed.
- The guidelines for the essay will be discussed in further detail. (Introduction, Body, Conclusion)
- Students will use their researched articles to read silently. They will be asked to list three facts about their favorite Presidents to be used in their essay.
- Each group will meet with the teacher to read and gather facts from their researched articles.

Lesson #3:

Balanced Literacy Components -- "Guided Writing and Read Aloud"
The essay will be collected, reviewed by the teacher and discussed individually with students. Students will share their essays with the class, seated in a round circle facing each other. The flip chart project will be hung up outside the classroom to share with the school.

Activity #3:

Students will begin creating a puppet representing their favorite President.

Lesson #4:

Balanced Literacy Components -- "Guided Writing, Shared Writing and Writing Aloud"
English Language Arts -- "Standard 4 -- Language for Social Interaction"
Each of the four groups will work together to create a play.

1. Brainstorm ideas for the main idea/theme of the play. Write them all down and choose the best
2. Briefly describe the action that will take place during each Act and then each scene. This must be written using a narrative format.
3. Break up the play into 2 Acts, each having a maximum of 3 scenes.
4. Begin writing the dialogue. Make sure you include stage directions so that each puppet will know the action to go along with the dialogue.
5. Students may use abbreviations, but be sure each member of the group understands what they mean.

Lesson #5
Balanced Literacy Component -- "Guided writing and interactive writing"
Guidelines for Presentation:

1. Operated by strings or guides (like marionettes) or may be over the hand, finger or stick.
2. Teams may choose to combine these forms as well and each puppet may be different.
3. Scenery size must be no larger than the chalkboard so that we can hang it with tape. Any art medium may be used.
4. Props are allowed.
5. Time limit for set up and presentation is 10 minutes.
6. The play must consist of two acts.

7. The Playbill must be created and designed by the team members. It must include:
title of play
cast of characters
setting or scene location
the name, city, state and country of school
a synopsis of the play
The number of pages and advertisements are up to you and your group
8. Purchased dolls are not allowed. Team members must construct puppets.

Lesson #6
How to create a puppet show:

1. Image the important scenes in your story.
2. Divide your story into two or three scenes.
3. Write the action of your story through the dialogue of your story characters.
4. Devise your own stage.
5. Consider props and scenery called backdrop.
6. Select appropriate music or other sound effects.
7. Use selected references to create your puppet characters.
8. Become familiar with hand movements.

Lesson #7:

Rules of Movement:

1. Three basic hand movements: finger, wrist and arm. All hand puppetry is a combination of these three.
2. Only move the puppet that is talking. The others must "freeze".
3. Don't move the puppet on every word. Move only on the important words, actions, reactions or moods.
4. All movements simple. Don't try the impossible.
5. Develop certain characteristic movements for the individual puppet. These movements should be used to identify the puppet, his personality, character, age, problems, etc.

Movements to practice:

Finger movements: Yes or positive, wave hello, come here, goodbye, clap
hands, happiness, pointing, creeping, crying, sneezing, or snoring.

Wrist movements: No or negative, shy, cute, bashful, looking for
something, taking a bow, looking up, cries, sneeze or snore.

Arm movements: Walking, skipping, hopping, running, jumping, falling,
up, down, sideward, backwards, cry, sneeze, or snore.

Activity #4:
Balanced Literacy Component -- "Reading Aloud"

Students will create invitations with brochures to invite parents, younger children (and depending how well the practice works out -- The Principal and Assistant Principal)

Homework: Each day student's will be asked to finish incomplete schoolwork. In addition, after going over the temperature data the students gathered, the students will be asked to make a chart and line graph from the information collect.