A boy and his family endure a difficult nine-week journey across the ocean and survive the first winter at Plymouth. Based on true events, "Across the Wide Dark Sea" poetically narrates a young boy's account of risking the ocean to find religious freedom in a new land.
This selection is an informational narrative in the form of a play or Readers' Theater. The play is about a group of boys and girls who are summertime campers at the National Sea Base camp in the Florida Keys. Their adventure includes camping, snorkeling, and sailing aboard the ship. This is a new adventure for the characters in this story.
This nonfiction story is about a partnership between a policeman, Officer Mike, and his partner, a police dog named Aero. Information about daily routine (work and breaks), Aero's special talents and Officer Mike's training and care of Aero is included.
Akiak is the story of a dog that desires to win the Iditarod with her owner, Mick. Akiak is injured and is disqualified from finishing the race, but she follows Mich and the team of dogs to the finish line. This lesson provides teachers with support for using text-dependent questions to help students derive big ideas and key understandings while developing vocabulary.
This informational text describes how paleontologists continue to investigate unanswered questions about dinosaurs.
The story is about a little boy who tries in vain to save, but unfortunately makes poor decisions and squanders his money.
Allie has a new basketball. She has a hard time finding someone to play with her because they believe basketball is a boys game. Allie continues to practice and play, despite their opinions.
This lesson provides teachers with support for using text-dependent questions to help students derive big ideas and key understandings while developing vocabulary from the text Amelia and Eleanor Go for a Ride. Pilot Amelia Earhart and first lady Eleanor Roosevelt are good friends and one night, after dinner at the White House, Amelia then offers to take Eleanor on an unforgettable night flight to Baltimore and back in the Curtis Condor twin-motor airplan. By the time they arrive back in Washington D.C., a group of reporters meets them at the airstrip. Eleanor admits to not flying this time, but has every intention to fly in the near future.
Nine-year old Anthony is proud of his history, culture, and family tradition of Mexican rodeo-style roping and riding. He also enjoys various aspects of his modern life such as school, basketball, friendships, swimming, and exploring.
Sarah and Susan are sisters who enjoy spending Sunday afternoons with their great-great Aunt Flossie. Aunt Flossie entertains her great-grandnieces by letting them explore her collection of hats, each of which has a story of its own.
The author, Helen Lester, traces her writing career from the age of three to adulthood. She shares her struggles with writing in elementary school and even later as a successful writer. Helens story demonstrates that even the most challenging struggles can be overcome with persistence and a good sense of humor.
This historical fiction story takes place in 1932 in the midst of the Great Depression in New York City. Baseball was king and Babe Ruth was at the top of his game. In this story, a young boy and his father become a team as they both work to support their family.
This lesson provides teachers with support for using text-dependent questions to help students derive big ideas and key understandings while developing vocabulary from the modern fable and play, The Baker's Neighbor. In this play, the neighborhood baker Manuel bakes delicious smelling pastries and puts them out for sale each morning, but his neighbor, Pablo, loves to smell the fresh bakery every morning without purchasing any pastries. This irritates Manuel to the point where he feels Pable should pay to smell his baked goods, and Manuel takes his complain to the town judge who eventually offers a ruling that allows Manuel to get the pleasure of "touching" Pablo's gold coins in return for Pable "smelling" the bakery.
When war breaks out in Mulans land and her father is drafted into the army, Mulan makes a great sacrifice when she disguises herself as a male to take her fathers place.
Diphtheria has broken out in Nome, Alaska. Teams of sled dogs carry medicine 800 miles over snow and ice to prevent an epidemic. Everyone was brave but one dog, Balto, made the difference between failure and success.
This lesson provides teachers with support for using text-dependent questions to help students derive big ideas and key understandings while developing vocabulary from the text Blue Willow. Janey's father is an immigrant worker and this forces Janey and her family to move around every few months, but Janey finds a friend named Lupe and a place she would like to call home permanently. Janey has to go to Camp Miller School for immigrant children like herself and she finds once again she must learn whether the new teacher will be a friend or just another teacher like the ones before her.
A family moves into an unpopulated area. With the ingenuity of one young girl, a town is established and grows. The idea of supply and demand is evident in this story. The businesses in town grow to include a tanner, a cooper, a miller, a blacksmith and a laundry.
This lesson provides teachers with support for using text-dependent questions to help students derive big ideas and key understandings while developing vocabulary from the biographical text, Boss of the Plains. This biography relates the life of John Batterson Stetson as a hatting apprentice until he was diagnosed with tuberculosis and decided to explore the American West. During his time with the people of the West, he invents a better hat, nicknamed "Boss of the Plains," - the first real cowboy hat.
This lesson provides teachers with support for using text-dependent questions to help students derive big ideas and key understandings while developing vocabulary using the fictional text The Bridge Dancers. In this book, two sisters, Maisie and Callie, are faced with a challenging situation. Callie gets hurt while their mother is away and Maisie must decide if she can rely on her knowledge of herbal medicine to save her sister's life.
This lesson provides teachers with support for using text-dependent questions to help students derive big ideas and key understandings while developing vocabulary using the modern fairytale, Cendrillon. In this Caribbean Cinderella story, Cendrillon is treated as a servant by her step-mother and half-sister. Nannin, the gogmother, uses a magic wand to ready Cendrillon for a ball, where Cendrillon meets a rich man's son, Paul, who falls in love with her and finds her when she is lost to him.
Young Jose Mendez is a terrific centerfielder but a weak hitter. Jose wants his father to be proud of him. When his father calls him a "Born Outfielder," Jose realizes that his father is proud of his abilities on and off the field.
This lesson provides teachers with support for using text-dependent questions to help students derive big ideas and key understandings while developing vocabulary using the children's novel, Charlotte's Web. A story of friendship and loyalty between Wilbur, a spring pic and a grey spider named Charlotte. Wilbur learns that he is being fattened for slaughter in the fall. Wilbur is at first disgusted by the fact that charlotte eats flies, but comes to both appreciate and love her.
"Cocoa Ice" is set in the early 1800s and describes the exchange that occurs when a trading ship from Maine travels to the Caribbean village of Santo Domingo. The story is told in two parts, each part narrated by a girl who lives in one of these locations.
In this work of fiction, Rooster and his eager friends set out to make strawberry shortcake, a recipe from Little Red Hen's cookbook. Rooster is glad to have help, but none of his friends know how to cook, so Rooster forges ahead to teach the helpers the basics of cooking and baking, with very funny results
"Cows in the Parlor: A Visit to a Dairy Farm" is an expository article about the daily running of a dairy farm. Students learn about a day in the life of a cow, Maggie, including what she eats, how shes milked, and other interesting facts.
In this story, Coyote builds a ladder to the Heavens and moves the stars to make pictures of himself and his animal friends. After viewing the constellations, the animals decree that Coyote is the most clever and crafty of them all.
Curt, a young Tewa Indian, and his grandfather, Andy, prepare for Feast Day. They enjoy the good food, beautiful dances, colorful costumes and the time they spend together celebrating the traditions of their ancestors
This lesson provides teachers with support for using text-dependent questions to help students derive big ideas and key understandings while developing vocabulary from the series of poems, Danitra Brown Leaves Town. Danitra and Zuri are two city-girls and best friends, and Danitra goes away to her auntĺäĄ_s house for the summer. These poems tell a story about how the girls stayed in touch by writing letters to each other, and how they discovered that they could have fun apart from one another while still remaining friends.
The students at Riverside Elementary School are excited about a visit from a real author. The class has been reading books by the author to get ready for her visit. No one was as excited as Eddie.
After his grandfather comes to America from Mexico, Francisco helps him find work. Francisco finds his grandfather work as a gardener even though the old man cannot speak English and was a carpenter by trade. This lie leads to them doing incorrect work. The grandfather teaches Francisco a valuable lesson about honesty and integrity.
Juno receives a letter from his grandmother who lives in Seoul, Korea. Even though he cannot read the Korean-language text, she is able to communicate with her grandmother through letters that include pictures and objects.
This lesson provides teachers with support for using text-dependent questions and other CCSS instructional shifts to help students derive big ideas and key understandings while developing vocabulary from the text Dear Mrs. LaRue. Mrs. LaRue sends her dog, Ike, to obedience school because of a series of inappropriate behaviors that he displays toward everyone. Ike feels he has been wrongly sent to the school and writes letters to explain his perspective on what actually happened in each situation, trying to persuade Ms. LaRue to come and get him.
Dogzilla is a fantasy story of mice who protect their city, Mousopolis, from being destroyed by Dogzilla. The mice come up with a plan to give Dogzilla a bath, which scares him away.
Beverly Cleary tells the story of a family on a rainy Sunday in a household full of bad moods. Ramonas father suggests they all go out to dinner. While out, an old man pays for their dinner because he believes they are a nice family and he misses his own family.
In this tall tale story, deadbeat Shorty Long has to avoid the people to whom he owes money. He tries to trick Widow Macrae out of $4.50, but actually created more problems for himself.
A little boy loses his neighbors dog inside the mysterious garden of Abdul Gasazi, who tells the boy that he has turned the dog into a duck. But when the boy returns home he finds the dog waiting for him on the porch. Gasazi was playing a trick on the boy - or was he?
In this story Gertrude Ederle overcomes obstacles, both physical and social, in order to prevail at her lifelong dream of being the first women to swim the English Channel.
This lesson provides teachers with support for using text-dependent questions and Common Core literacy strategies to help students derive big ideas and key understandings while developing vocabulary using the biographic text, Gloria Estefan. Along with her worldwide musical fame, Gloria Estefan also experienced tragedy, but continued to help others in unfortunate situations. Gloriaĺĺs success has allowed her to receive multiple honors and awards for her selfless work leading to her being referred to as "a star with a heart."
ŕThe Go-Around DollarĚŇ is a selection that combines two genres: realistic fiction and expository text. It provides an entertaining look at the journey of a dollar as it passes through the hands of various characters.
In this story, Jangmi moves from her home in Korea to a new home in the United States. At first she is sad about leaving behind her friends and Korean customs and traditions, but once she arrives in America she begins to adjust. She becomes hopeful that someday America could feel like home, too.
The folktale ŕHalf-ChickenĚŇ is about a chicken hatched with only half a body, one leg, one wing, one eye, and only half as many feathers as the other chicks.
This lesson provides teachers with support for using text-dependent questions and Common Core literacy strategies to help students derive big ideas and key understandings while developing vocabulary using the text "Happy Birthday Dr. King". When ten-year old Jamalĺĺs grandfather hears that the boy is in trouble for fighting to sit in the back of the bus, he tells Jamal about Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King, Jr., and the civil rights movement. Jamal responds with an idea for a skit for his schoolĺĺs King Day assembly.
This lesson provides teachers with support for using text-dependent questions and Common Core literacy strategies to help students derive big ideas and key understandings while developing vocabulary using the text, "Heat Wave." A fantastic heat wave hits a Kansas farm, roasting the geese, popping the corn in the fields, and causing other distressing events. The farm girl tries a few clever ways to get rid of it, and finally succeeds when she plants iceberg lettuce.
Angel Arrellano, a nine-year-old girl from Fresno, CA. spearheaded a campaign to raise money to be donated to the local zoo. Her enthusiasm and altruism generated an overwhelming response from the Fresno community and beyond, which allowed for much needed upkeep and improvements for the zoo and its animals.
This nonfiction piece tells about Barbara del Colorado, a village in Costa Rica. People needed a way to make money; a scientist suggested that they grow butterflies. The town now sells 250 pupae a month, making enough money to buy what they need.
ŕHottest, Coldest, Highest, DeepestĚŇ takes the reader on a journey around the world to various continents found on Earth that contain unique natural features.
ŕHow Animals TalkĚŇ is an informational, nonfiction selection describing how various animals communicate or send messages. Animals communicate with each other to warn of danger, to share feelings, to attract a mate, and even prove dominance.
This text explains the nuts and bolts of how different types of coins, bills, and checks; how they are connected; and how your dollars can earn money through the bank.
This realistic fictional story is about Steven and his Aunt Carolyn. The two have always shared a special bond; each time Aunt Carolyn takes a trip, she sends a special postcard to Steven. Now, Aunt Carolyn is coming for the family block party and Steven wants to find a special gift for her.
This Informational text focuses on the migration habits of the grasshopper/locust and the gray whale.
ŕJust Plain FancyĚŇ is the story of a young Amish girl, Naomi, who longs to have something fancy in her life. But when an she finds an unusual egg that hatches into a peacock, she ends up learning a valuable lesson about an acceptable and admired kind of fancy.
Patricias Great-Grandmother comes to America as a child from Russia. She creates a quilt that is passed on from generation to generation. The quilt becomes an important symbol and is used in many of the familys traditional Jewish celebrations.
This lesson provides teachers with support for using text-dependent questions and Common Core literacy strategies to help students derive big ideas and key understandings while developing vocabulary using the text, "The Last Dragon." A young boy, Peter, is hesitant to spend the summer with his great aunt in Chinatown. Peter finds an aging parade dragon in a store and, in restoring it, learns to connect with the dragon and the Chinese community.
This story takes place in the 1930s in the Great Plains region of the United States devastated by a great drought. Leah had been given a pony by her father when times were good and crops were growing. Leah sells her pony to Mr. B to help her father. At the end of the story, Mr. B gives the pony back to Leah.
In this nonfiction story, readers learn how and why scientists brave the extreme conditions of both poles in order to do research that will help us learn more about our world
Life in the Grunt tribe changes when a baby dinosaur hatches from the huge egg that Little Grunt drags home for brunch.
Two students hide in the bathroom in order to avoid taking the math test, eventually telling their teacher they were trapped yb a giant squid. While waiting to speak to the principal, they go in to the lost and found, where they enter an imaginary world hidden in the lost and found bin.
This lesson provides teachers with support for using text-dependent questions and Common Core literacy strategies to help students derive big ideas and key understandings while developing vocabulary using the text, "Marven of the Great North Woods." To keep their only son, Marven, safe from the influenza epidemic, Marven's parents decide to send their ten year old Jewish son far away to a logging camp filled with French Canadian lumberjacks. He copes with language and cultural differences while he learns his bookkeeping job and makes a wonderful friend.
Judy Moody is on a mission to save the rain forest. Not only has she chosen to make this her mission, she is also determined to make it the mission of her unknowing family.
This is a story about Saruni, a young boy, and his family, who are both consumers and sellers in a market in Tanzania. There are many enticing items at the markert, but Saruni decides to save his money so he can buy a bike to help his mother take heavy loads to sell at the market.
In this folktale, the town of Barletta faces destruction until Zia Concetta asks the towns giant statue for help. With a clever idea, help from the townspeople and an onion, the giant outwits the army and restores peace
Detective Nate the Great searches San Francisco for a lost joke book. He discovers that the wrong place can be the best place to look for a lost item.
This story is a folktale about a princess named Aziza who chooses her husband based on his answer to a math riddle. After traveling the kingdom, many suitors (a scholar, a merchant, and a soldier) try to answer her riddle but to no avail. A simple farmer is able to easily solve the riddle and that is who she chooses as her husband.
This expository nonfiction text is about how an oak tree may become vulnerable to disease from its bark being damaged by a bear clawing it.
This realistic fiction story is about a young boy, Max, who is growing up on a large fruit farm in Chili and how he wants to find a friend in a faraway place
In this nonfiction selection, an Emperor penguin lays an egg in the bitter cold of Antarctica. The penguin parents battle the harsh environment to protect the egg and nurture the chick to maturity.
Pepita stops speaking Spanish because she is tired of being the neighborhood translator. However, when a disaster nearly occurs, Pepita realizes that speaking two languages is best.
Elizabeth was very determined to convince her parents to get her a pet. No matter what she did, her parents did not agree. Unexpectedly, she finds the perfect pet (a bug!) right under her nose, and her parents relent.
This excerpt from a biography explains how Pablo Picassos painting style changed over the twentieth century. It describes his Blue Period, Rose Period, and the period of Cubism.
This informational, nonfiction text introduces the solar system and its many parts the sun, the eight planets, the satellites of the planets, asteroids, comets, and meteoroids. It includes models that show sizes of the planets relative to the Earth and their distances from the Sun.
Poppa buys himself some new pants that need hemming. The women of his family are too tired to hem the pants before church the following morning. During the night, ghosts rally the women in the family each remove material from the pants so that the pants are ultimately too short for Papa.
Most kids collect something. Prudy collects everything! Rocks, stamps, foil, worn-out toothbrushes, pretty paper napkins, tufts of hair from different breeds of dogs --everything! It is a delightful examination of a common affliction.
A young girl raises a dragon on her familys farm. The young girl takes the dragon to Dragon Island, but returns to the farm with a new batch of eggs.
Ramona and Beezus, two sisters, get into trouble for not eating their dinner. As punishment, they must cook dinner for the family.The girls learn how difficult it is to prepare a family dinner.
As a child, the authors father was fascinated by rocks.This interest consumed the young boy as he collected them in all of his spare time. People told him that he had rocks in his pockets and in his head. But he never allowed their criticism to detour him. Finally, a museum offers him a great job because a man with "rocks in his head" was just what they needed.
Rosie is a Tibetan terrier whose friendly nature makes her a perfect visiting dog. After a lot of training, she brings comfort to people in nursing homes and hospitals.
In this realistic fiction story, young childrens powers of imagination create the town of Roxaboxen filled with houses, buildings, and stores. Years later, these friends reflect on the memories of their special town.
Ruby wants to fit in with her new class, so she imitates everything her friend Angela does. The teacher, Miss Hart, encourages Ruby to just be herself. At first, Ruby struggles with this idea, but then discovers that she has a special gift to share.
In this story, a boy has a dog named Rugby with whom he is great friends. One day a puppy named Rosie joins the family. Rugby does not want to be friends with Rosie. But a friendship finally develops, even though Rosie is destined to leave and become a guide dog.
This nonfiction text discusses how a fourth grade class at Union Avenue School worked hard to protect the New Jersey shoreline by planting recycled Christmas trees in the sand. The trees prevent high tides from flooding sand dunes, which serve as animal habitats and also protect peoples homes.
This informational, nonfiction selection describes how schools are different in various parts of the world and includes ŕamazing factsĚŇ about these schools. Even though schools are different there is one common thread: school is a place to learn.
A third grade girl named Beany creates a science fair project with her partner, Kevin. Beany is not confident that their project is the best since it does not include flashy props. Beany learns that good science is enough to win the science fair, and she regains her self-esteem through winning.
Ben goes to the beach and watches a seal being born. Over the next few seasons, Ben develops a special bond with this seal, a bond that Ben knows will last the rest of his life.
This poem describes the feelings of a girl whose best friend, Hanna, has moved away. The little girl feels that nothing will be the same again since her friend left.
This lesson provides teachers with support for using text-dependent questions and Common Core literacy strategies to help students derive big ideas and key understandings while developing vocabulary using the text, "Sing to the Stars." Ephram loves to play the violin, and when he discovers that a blind neighbor was once a musician, but stopped playing the piano due to a family tragedy, he encourages the man to return to his music. Each encourages the other, and they perform together at a community concert.
This lesson provides teachers with support for using text-dependent questions and Common Core literacy strategies to help students derive big ideas and key understandings while developing vocabulary using the story Skylark. In this story, a family struggles on a prairie farm during a drought. They are forced to make a painful choice when their water soon runs out.
This folktale is about three monks who visit a village filled with unhappy people. The villagers do not welcome the monks, so the three monks decide to make stone soup to teach the villagers a lesson in happiness.
Julian meets Gloria, a new girl in his neighborhood. Together they make a wish kite, with wishes fastened to its tail; both wish for lasting friendship.
This African folk tale explains how many African tales came to be known as ŕSpider stories.ĚŇ In this tale, Ananse, the Spider man, travels up to the sky to offer to buy Nyame, the Sky Gods, stories. Nyame asks Ananse to bring him Osebo the leopard-of-the-terrible-teeth, Mmboro the hornets-who-sting-like-fire, and Mmoatia the fairy-whom-men-never-see. Ananse agrees to the price but Nyame believes that Ananse is too small and weak to accomplish such a task. Ananse uses his intelligence and cunning to trick all three creatures. He returns to Nyame with payment for his stories. Nyame calls his court together to sing the praises of Ananse and declares his stories ŕSpider stories.ĚŇ
This lesson provides teachers with support for using text-dependent questions and Common Core literacy strategies to help students derive big ideas and key understandings while developing vocabulary using the illustrated text, "The Stranger." This story uses a mixture of pictures and words to explore the idea of the changes of the seasons and the expected natural events that occur with it' colder weather, leaves changing color, Jack Frost and migration. Chris Van Allsburg walks a fine line between reality and fantasy to create a mystery about the identity of the stranger who will represent the seasonal change from summer to fall. The Houghton Mifflin authors identify the storyĺĺs theme as an allegory for autumn and the use of personification to make the association.
This is a Zuni play about an ant in the search to find out who is strongest of all. The ant talks with numerous characters to find out who is the strongest. At the end, he learns the lesson that everything is stronger than something else.
Glashka uses her innate connection and intuition with nature to help bring together the community in hopes of trying to save the lives of the trapped Beluga whales, who have swam into the freezing channel
Benny is nervous about the upcoming talent show. After a talk with her parents, Beany realizes that the most important thing is doing what makes her feel happy and not letting herself get pressured by her friend.
This lesson provides teachers with support for using text-dependent questions and Common Core literacy strategies to help students derive big ideas and key understandings while developing vocabulary using the text, "Tanya's Reunion." Tanya is initially thrilled to be heading early to Grandmaĺĺs Virginia family farm for a reunion, but it's not as much fun as she had imagined. When Grandma shares her memories and Tanya discovers an important artifact, Tanya embraces the farm for what was in the past and what is in the present.
This lesson provides teachers with support for using text-dependent questions and Common Core literacy strategies to help students derive big ideas and key understandings while developing vocabulary using the text "Tomas and the Library Lady". With the help of the English-speaking local librarian, Spanish-speaking Tomas is encouraged to assume the role of family storyteller, finding that he cannot only be a learner but a teacher as well.
In this trickster tale, Bear and Hare are involved in a gardening partnership. Industrious, clever Hare makes a deal with BearÄ Hare and his family work Bear's land and split the crops in half. In the end, Bear learns that he has to do hard work to be rewarded.
A crew of sailors captained by Sir Ernest Shackleton is trying to reach the South Poles ice cap when their ship, Endurance, is blocked by the ice and is crushed by moving ice a month later. The crew camps on the ice and then Shack decides they should travel in lifeboats to Elephant Island and from there to the whaling station on South Georgia Island.
A boy named Taro helps Jiro-San, a wise old man, clean up the beach for the giant sea turtles that swim ashore to lay their eggs. While he waits, he learns about the rewards that come from being calm and observing the world around you.