Lessons & Units :: Classify and Categorize 4th Grade Unit

Lesson 2: Using Text Features to Find Information

Lesson Plan

Animals That Hibernate | 1000L

Animals That Hibernate
Learning Goal
Develop research questions.
Classify and categorize information into an outline form.
Use the features of nonfiction to identify information relevant to a research question.
Approximately 50 minutes
Necessary Materials
Provided: Direct Teaching/Guided Practice Example Chart, Guided Practice Example Outline, Independent Practice Worksheet
Not Provided: Animals That Hibernate by Phyllis J. Perry, chart paper, markers, glue, tape
  • Teacher Modeling

    will model identifying three research questions about a specific topic: hibernation. I will chart my three questions. (Direct Teaching and Guided Practice Example Chart is provided below in Teacher and Student Materials.) I will use the table of contents and headings within the chapters of Animals That Hibernate by Phyllis J. Perry, to find the answers to my questions. I will read for relevant information in Chapters 2–6, and classify and categorize information based on which question the information answers.

  • Think Check

    Ask: How did I use the table of contents and the headings to help me find information from the book? Students should respond that you identified a question before reading. Then you read the headings and table of contents to help you look for key words and phrases to answer your research questions. Finally, you read the text, and wrote down important pieces of information in an outline.

  • Guided Practice

    will use the information from our notes to create an outline. (Guided Practice Example Outline is provided in 'Text & Materials' tab.) We will categorize our information into the type of place where the animal hibernates.

  • Independent Practice

    will write a research question about a specific topic of your choice. You will find books that will answer your three questions. You will also use the table of contents and headings within the chapters to find the relevant parts of the book that answer your research questions. You will record the new information as notes, and then classify and categorize your notes into an outline. (Student Independent Practice is provided below.) Note: Students will need a variety of nonfiction materials on various topics and reading levels. Your school or community library is a good resource for this lesson. Students will need to save the outline they create for Independent Practice for use in Lesson 3.

    TIP: Have students choose topics connected to what they are currently learning in social studies and/or science as a way to develop a thematic unit of study that meets learning outcomes for multiple subjects.

Build Student Vocabulary keen

Tier 2 Word: keen
Contextualize the word as it is used in the story Grizzly bears have keen hearing.
Explain the meaning student-friendly definition) Keen means alert and sharp. When the author says that grizzly bears have keen hearing, she means that they are alert to the sounds around them.
Students repeat the word Say the word keen with me: keen.
Teacher gives examples of the word in other contexts My dog has a keen sense of smell. He can smell right away if I was with another dog. Many birds have very keen vision. They can see tiny worms or insects from high up in the sky.
Students provide examples Can you think of an animal that has a keen sense? Tell me about it by saying, “___________ has a keen sense of ____________.”
Students repeat the word again. What word are we talking about? keen
Additional Vocabulary Words emerging, revives

Build Student Background Knowledge

Before reading the book, explain that hibernation is a period when animals go into hiding for the winter. They gather food and hide in a warm place because during winter it is hard for them to find food and stay warm. When they enter hibernation, their heart rate slows, and they rest to conserve energy. Explain that using up energy will make them hungry. For example, if you run around outside, your heart rate gets faster, you burn up calories, and you get hungry. Animals that hibernate do not run around outside because that would use up all of the food they have stored in their bodies and in their homes.

Texts & Materials

Standards Alignment

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