Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Teaching nonfiction features: Scholastic Discover More series

While shopping around at Barnes and Noble tonight, I noticed a series in the nonfiction section that was also new at our book fair this year.  The series is called the Scholastic Discover More series.  I purchased one about Bugs to read with my girls at home.  When I got home and looked up the series online, I found that it has been created for three reading groups.  Emergent readers (4+), confident readers (6+), and expert readers (9+).  Each group of books looks just a bit different from the others.  One of the features that drew me into the book is the free digital book that is advertised on the title.  You can sample a free companion digital book online to see for yourself how great they are!  The digital books include videos, definitions for new vocabulary, an encyclopedia feature, quizzes, and more!  I'd like to purchase sets of 5 of various titles from this series and use them to review our nonfiction features in the library.  Here's what I'm thinking...

I think I will call this lesson:  Can you see what I see?
First, I will teach the students about nonfiction features.  Using one of the free digital companion books could be used to pinpoint features together on your SMART board.  After nonfiction features have been taught, I will explain that we are playing a game called can you see what I see.  Students will be placed in groups of four or five.  Each student will have the same copy of the Scholastic Discover More title and some Post-It notes.  I will make a list of all of the nonfiction features that I've seen in their book.  The job of the team is to find the features in the book, post the page, and label the feature correctly.  Here are all of the features that I found in the Bugs book:

  • table of contents
  • cutaway
  • close-up
  • real photos
  • maps
  • diagrams with labels
  • photos with captions
  • charts
  • glossary
  • index
After the students have found each feature, they can check it off of a checklist that you have provided for them.  When they are finished, each team can come back to the group and share a few of their favorite nonfiction features with the group on the Elmo so everyone can see.

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