Develop critical thinking and analytical skills in young students with our Comparing Similar Stories Lesson Plan. In this lesson, students will identify and learn the steps of comparing similar stories. Strategies are solidified as students successfully identify similarities in stories after making comparisons.
Sample Classroom Procedure / Teacher Instruction
- Sit in the front of the room/carpet area with two balls (or other object you choose) in front of you. The objects must have noticeable similarities but also differences. Have students join you and ask them to identify things that are the same about the balls. They might say shape, size, color, pattern etc., whatever fits your objects. When students are done listing the things the objects have in common, ask them if they know the technical term for “things that are the same” in two different objects. Guide students to the term “similarities”. Explain that when you examine objects, or read texts, you can look for similarities and this is called making comparisons.Ask if students have a best friend – do not call out names! Ask them to think of the similarities they have with their best friend. Use yourself and your own friend as an example. You might say, “My best friend and I both love to read, watch funny movies, and we both love ice cream.” Ask students if you listed similarities they can see just by looking at you and your best friend. Most likely, they could not. Explain that comparisons of similarities are both about appearance and actions/attitudes.
- Say “Today we’re going to listen to two short stories and I want you to listen for similarities. When we are done reading, I want you to make comparisons about the characters, events, and setting.”
- Read the sample passages. Ask the students, “What did you notice that was the same about the characters?” They might state- there are two characters in each piece, the two are friends, someone in each story is scared. Praise students for accurate comparisons of characters, and probe to include that the characters have motivations to face their fears- either through not wanting to let down an excited friend, or for wanting to take an important chance. Ask students to continue to list similarities and compare the setting and events.
- Say, “Now that we have read two texts and made comparisons, can you tell me how to do it? Let’s make an anchor chart that lists the steps of being a strategic reader who can make comparisons.”
Common Core State Standards: CCSS.ELA Standard: Reading informational text 2.9 and 3.9 Compare and contrast the most important points presented by two texts on the same topic. CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.1.9 Compare and contrast the adventures and experiences of characters in stories.
Class Sessions (45 minutes): 2-3
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