Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Large Group Literacy: Pets

What Pet Should I Get?
This is what I title our graphing activity at the beginning of the week.  The entire week I spend building up towards what classroom pet we will have.  Monday, I read books such as What Pet Should I Get and general pet books.  I have three options that I get approved by administrators prior to this week; hermit crab, fish, and hamster.  Those are the options that are posted in this graph for students to choose as our class pet.

First Journal Entry
Pets is a new theme that I began in my classroom this past school year.  It falls after Friends & Family but before Space.  This is a time for students to again practice writing their name but I give them the prompt to draw which pet they hope to have as a classroom pet.

If You Give a Cat a Cupcake Big Book Reading
Big Books are important for demonstrating the idea of tracking print in reading.  At the beginning of the school year, I have students use "power pointers" which is a cue for them to extend their hands and attempt to track the print along with me as we read.

What Pet Should I Get Revisit
Monday we read general pet books and voted on three pet types.  Tuesday, we read all hermit crab books.  Wednesday, all fish books.  Thursday, all hamster books.  We now revisit the graph and go down each child's selection from Monday and ask if they would like to keep their choice or change now that they have new information about each animal.  The final counts determine which pet we get.

Class Pet Naming
Now we have our animal of choice!  I take four student suggestions and write them on sentence strips allowing the suggesting student to stand in a corner of the room with their name.  Once there is a student in each corner, we vote by moving.  I call out which student is holding which names and students stand by the child holding the name that they think most fits the animal.  If there is a tie for most, the other two are dropped and students move again between those names.  The name with the most students is placed near the cage to identify the name of our classroom pet.


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