Empower students on how to pick the right book for them with our Choosing a Book Lesson Plan. Students will learn the steps to identify whether a book is at the independent, instructional, or frustrational level (referred to as “easy, just right, or too difficult in this lesson). Students will select a “just right” text by using the acronym PICK.
Sample Classroom Procedure / Teacher Instruction
- Sit in the front of the room or gathering area with a board book that is obviously for babies or preschoolers, a text that you currently read in your classroom, and a novel or textbook clearly for upper grades or adults. Ask your students to join you and say, “If you had to give one of these books to a friend in ___ grade (use your grade level) at another school, which one would you send them?” Call on students, who will most likely suggest the grade level appropriate text. Confirm that is a good choice. Ask students why they would not choose the baby book as you show them the pictures and text inside. Guide discussion to the fact that the words are too easy, too many pictures/ not enough text, the plot or concept is too simple. Now show them the upper grades or adult text, (reading some of the words in it that are challenging) and ask why they would not choose this to send to someone in their grade level. Guide the discussion to the fact that it is too difficult, the amount of print on the page, the themes or concepts are too hard, the vocabulary is too hard to decode or read fluently.
- Say, “Choosing the right book is important so that you can have success as you read and actually get meaning from the text. Even within grade level texts, there are some that will be too easy, too hard, and some will be just right. Choosing a book that is a good fit is a skill you will need all through school. Let’s make a chart with some tips for finding just the right one.” Using chart paper, create the anchor chart below, asking students to supply suggestions for the columns.
- Have children complete Activity Page One using three texts they pick from the classroom. Beforehand it would be advisable to set out three book bins full of texts you consider easy, just right, and too difficult, and say a student must pick one from each.
- After students go over the chart and complete the first activity page, introduce another anchor chart that details the strategy for choosing a text at the just right level. Explain that this is an extension, further refining choosing a book based on more detailed criteria than just easy, hard, or just right. Teach students to think as they PICK a book, using this acronym.
- Complete the second activity page using three books that are in the “just right range”. Beforehand, you may want to set out a wide selection of texts for students that are in the “just right” range for them to choose from.
- Students will independently complete the practice page.
Common Core State Standards: CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RF.1.4, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RF.1.4, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RF.2.4, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RF.2.4, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RF.3.4, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RF.3.4
Class Sessions (45 minutes): 3
Want more reading resources? Check out our other Reading Lesson Plans!