LESSON ONE: Applying Text Features in Fiction
Frog and Toad are Friends is used to teach students pre-reading strategies to identify text features. Titles and pictures determine the story’s meaning. A primary focus centers on “Table of Contents”. Students use a web to chart characteristics of a good friend used later in narrative writing.
R2A Locate and apply specific information in title, picture and table of contents.
§ Sources of Literature
o Frog and Toad are Friends by Arnold Lobel
o Overhead or chart paper
o Rubber bands
o Paper clips
o Darkened sheet of paper
§ Handouts provided
o Table of Contents chart graphic organizer
o Table of Contents chart answer key
§ Words to know
o pre-reading strategies
o text features
o graphic organizer
Assessment is through observation of students using a variety of pre-reading strategies. Guided practice is used
to complete the Table of Contents chart and apply information. A re-read to determine setting, both time and
place, is done in a teacher conference. Think, Pair, Share cooperative grouping is used as a quick check of
knowledge. A completed narrative writing piece with a scoring guide is used to assess student writing ability.
1. Students should have access to a copy of Frog and Toad are Friends (sharing is acceptable). Students look at the title and the front cover and predict what the book is about.
2. Introduce the picture walk. Allow three to four minutes for students to take a picture walk through the book. Discuss various illustrations identifying characters, facial expressions, settings and action.
A picture walk is a pre-reading strategy: an examination of the text looking at pictures to gain an understanding of the story and to elicit story related language in advance.
Who are the main characters in this book?
How can you tell which is Frog and which is Toad?
By looking at the illustrations, which character do you predict is happiest?
Where is the setting for the first story?
What clues helped you answer the question?
3. Review the text features of title and author, and introduce table of contents. Explain the concept of a “chapter book”.
Focus on why the Table of Contents is a useful tool and how to use it correctly.
4. After discussing how to use the Table of Contents, group students in pairs. One student has a book with rubber band or paper clips and a colored sheet of paper to cover the Table of Contents. The other student has a book with a Table of Contents. The teacher directs students to find the first page of a specific story within the book. After several attempts to find the first page, discuss how the Table of Contents is a useful reading tool. Ask who was able to find the starting pages easier by using the Table of Contents. Students tell how they used the Table of Contents and why it was useful.
5. Discuss the procedure for completing the Table of Contents chart graphic organizer. Using this activity, identify the Table of Contents and predict what is going to happen. Using the Table of Content from Frog and Toad are Friends, complete this activity.
This activity can also be used later when teaching non-fiction elements.