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Reading/Writing
Grade: 1-2

#800. Writing as a tool for learning

Reading/Writing, level: 1-2
Posted Thu Mar 4 21:52:20 PST 2010 by Phoebe Hevers (Phoebe Hevers).
Broomfield, CO
Materials Required: The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein, venn diagram
Activity Time: 45-60 minutes
Concepts Taught: point of view, graphic organizer, compare and contrast, main idea

Mini Lesson
Writing Activity to Increase Reading Comprehension
Grade 2
Purpose: The purpose of this mini lesson is to teach students that they can use graphic organizers to compare and contrast during their reading and writing. Using graphic organizers helps students think about describing subjects, comparing and contrasting two objects, and sequencing. Students will try to understand the author's point of view.
Materials: The Giving Tree, Venn diagram, writing journal
Introduce the book, The Giving Tree. Have the students predict what the story is about based on the title. (Research has shown that prediction helps students think deeply about text.)
Read the story. While reading the story, talk about different vocabulary words like stump, branches, etc. that students are not familiar with. After reading the story, have the students discuss what the tree gave and received in the story and do the same for the boy. Making a Venn diagram of how the tree and boy are similar and different.

Looking at the Venn diagram, what do you notice about the relationship between the boy and the tree? Do they give and receive the same? Does one give more than the other? Is it a trusting relationship? How do you know? Should this relationship change and if so why? Write a summary about what you learned from the Venn diagram about the differences and similarities between the tree and the boy.

Conclusion: First we read a story called The Giving Tree, and then we made a Venn diagram that compared and contrast the boy and the tree. We used our information and wrote about the relationship between the tree and the boy. Who would like to share first?