Emphasize the literary element of setting as the following types of literature are read aloud and discussed: collective biography, nonfiction, historical fiction.
Target Audience: Appropriate for second and third graders, as well as first semester fourth graders.
Focus: Biography, nonfiction, and historical fiction provide information that can help readers understand historical figures and events.
Objective / Goal: Students will learn:
Length of Time: Four of five class periods.
Overview: For each of three books, identify type of literature and location in library according to call number. Read books aloud, discuss and record students’ ideas about information discovered, and assess students’ understanding of literature types and locations. During the fourth or fifth class period review three types of literature (biography, nonfiction, historical fiction) and locations. Provide time for browsing, selection and discussion.
Arrange for class to meet near biography section of library. Prior to class display the following information and graphic organizer on chart paper:
biography: information about people’s lives
MY BROTHERS’ FLYING MACHINE: WILBUR, ORVILLE, AND ME
Begin class by identifying the biography sections of the library, both 920 and B sections. Define biographies as books with information about people’s lives. Examine 920/Yol on chart paper, the call number for the book to be read aloud today. Note that 920 indicates the book is a collective biography, a biography about more than one person. The second line for a collective biography includes the first three letters of the author’s last name. Identify the location for collective biographies in the nonfiction collection. Identify the location for biographies about individual people. Note that the call number for these books is B followed by the first three letters of the subject’s last name.
Select MY BROTHERS’ FLYING MACHINE: WILBUR, ORVILLE, AND ME from its shelf location, reading aloud a few other call labels to model how you skim call numbers to locate a specific book. Examine the call number on the spine label, same as indicated on the chart paper. Review with students the meaning of both lines.
Introduce MY BROTHERS’ FLYING MACHINE as a biography about the Wright brothers and their sister, Katharine, written by Jane Yolen and illustrated by Jim Burke. Focus on setting, both time and place, as you build background. Use a map of the United States to locate their childhood home of Dayton, Ohio as well as Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. Identify the time period for the book as late 1800s to 1909. Emphasize that during this time people were not yet flying in airplanes. Some people were trying to create planes that could fly with wind power, but planes that could fly without wind power had not yet been invented. Identify forms of transportation that were used during this time period in place of airplanes as trains, boats, horse and wagon, and only a very few cars.
Ask students to listen and think as you read aloud this biography, MY BROTHERS’ FLYING MACHINE, to learn about the Wright siblings. Ask students to think about:
Show students class chart to be used for recording their ideas in FQR format after book is read.
Examine illustrations on front and back covers, dust jacket flaps, and title page; read aloud dedications; read aloud book and “A Note from the Author.” Discuss and record students’ ideas. Follow directions in Assessment / Evaluation for culmination of class. Keep notes recorded on chart paper for future use.
Arrange for class to meet near nonfiction section of library. Prior to class display the following information and graphic organizer on chart paper:
TOUCHING THE SKY: THE FLYING ADVENTURES OF WILBUR AND ORVILLE WRIGHT
Begin class by identifying the nonfiction section of the library. Note that nonfiction books deal with facts and information. Examine the call number 629.13/Col on the chart as an example of a call number for a nonfiction book. Identify that 629.13 stands for a specific part of the nonfiction collection, applied science (technology), where you would find books about flying and airplanes. Bor represents the first three letters of the last name of the author.
As you pull TOUCHING THE SKY by Borden from its shelf location, read aloud a few other call numbers on books near it to model how you skim call numbers to locate a specific book. Note that books near TOUCHING THE SKY are also about flight. Examine both parts of call number on spine of book and review what both parts mean.
Introduce TOUCHING THE SKY as a nonfiction book containing information about how Wilbur and Orville Wright set amazing records in flight by 1909. This book is more about their flying adventures than about details of their life, so it is found in the 600s instead of the biography section of the library.
Ask students to listen and think as you read aloud TOUCHING THE SKY to discover why the Wright Brothers became so famous by 1909. Stop periodically while reading (or at the end of both sessions, if two class periods are needed) to discuss and record students’ ideas using the chart and FQR format.
Review setting, both time period and place. Examine front and back cover and title page, noting title, two authors, and illustrators. Identify an introduction as a part of the book that provides readers with information that will help them understand the book. Read aloud introduction; read book, taking two class periods, if needed. Discuss and record students’ ideas. Note that an epilogue is a conclusion to a book, sometimes informing the reader of events that occurred after the information provided in the book. Read and discuss the epilogue. Record ideas.
Examine maps and Aviation Time Line at the end of the book. Read aloud dedications. Briefly make connections of acknowledgments to authors’ research. Note that reading nonfiction can be an exciting way to discover information to add to our knowledge of the Wright siblings gained in the biography. Follow directions in Assessment / Evaluation for culmination of class. Keep chart paper for future use.
Arrange for class to meet near picture book section of library. Prior to class display the following information and graphic organizer on chart paper:
E: picture books
historical fiction: story that COULD have happened in the past
Begin class by identifying the picture book section of the library, defining these books as fantasy, realistic, or historical fiction stories. Examine the call number E/Dru on the chart as a type of call number found on picture books (known as “Everybody Books” in the Iowa City Community School District). Identify that E stands for Everybody or picture book. Dru represents the first three letters of the last name of the author.
As you pull THE FLYERS from its shelf location, read aloud a few other call numbers to model how you skim call numbers to locate a specific book. Identify call number on spine label of book and review what both parts mean. Introduce THE FLYERS as a historical fiction book. It is a story that could actually have happened in the past, during the time of Wilbur and Orville Wright’s first flight in North Carolina. Review setting of the flight, using a map of the United States.
Ask students to listen and think in order to discover how the Wright Brothers could have affected the lives of children at the time of their first flight as well as how they affected our own lives. Examine wrap-around cover, end pages, title page; read aloud dedication. Read, discuss, and record students’ ideas. Follow directions in Assessment / Evaluation for culmination of class. Keep chart paper for future use.
Prior to class identify several biographies, nonfiction books from the 600s, and historical fiction picture books that might be of interest to students. Leave books on shelves but identify with sticky notes on spines. Display class notes from last three sessions.
Discuss and ask students to identify:
Ask students to browse independently or in pairs and select at least one biography, nonfiction or historical fiction book to check out and read for fun. At end of period divide into two groups, one led by teacher and one led by librarian. Have each student identify title, type of literature selected, and why book seemed interesting.
Assessment / Evaluation: Assessment for the first three sessions is intended to be instructional while informing media specialist of students’ ability to begin distinguishing between nonfiction, biography, and historical fiction. Use discussion as needed to clarify student questions or misinformation.
Media specialist holds book just read, cover visible to students, and asks all class members to agree (thumbs up) or disagree (thumbs down) with the appropriate statement below:
After class responses are shown, call on a student indicating correct answer and ask why that is so. Be sure the particular type of literature is defined in the answer.
Identify and read aloud call number on spine of book. Ask another student to show where book would be located on library shelf. Shelve book. Briefly clarify again what the call number means and how it helps readers find books on library shelves as well as know what kind of book it is.
Ask another student to pull the books on both sides of this title as other examples of the type of books that are shelved in the same area. Suggest that students visit this area when they are looking for interesting books to read.
This page was last updated on September 15, 2005.