I love teaching themed weeks! The students are so engaged, which makes for a perfect time to hit them with HARD curriculum. In October I always focus a whole week on bats! It is so much fun while being academically rigorous, and engaging!
Today, I am going to share with you what I do each day! Then, at the end, you can get a FREEBIE to print my plans for yourself! 😉
We start off the week reading “Bats” by Gail Gibbons! This is a great book that really introduces the topic in a rigorous way! Click the book image below to find the affiliate link.
Then, I make a “fact bat” out of black paper and hang it up. I like to make a HUGE bat because it serves the purpose of both decoration and a daily reminder of our learning!
We talk about the main idea and how to find strong supporting details. Students then get to use chalk markers (affiliate link here) to write on the bat! They each have to write one strong fact about bats. If we didn’t have enough facts we can even use our technology to search more!
In writing, we will talk about how to create GOOD questions for research. Students will create a list of strong questions that they want to learn about bats. These will be used for our informational writing this week.
We watch “Bats” by Gail Gibbons for our reread. After reading it again, we will discuss what new information we learned and why it is important to reread texts.
Then, we create a main idea and detail bat for an assessment. It is SUPER easy, but fun for the kids (the bat will be FREE at the end of this post).
For writing, we spend the entire time researching. The students are using books from our library and the QR sheet in the writing unit to research their questions.
We read “Stellaluna” by Jannel Cannon. Click on the picture below for the affiliate link. We discuss the difference between nonfiction and fiction text.
Then, I have students go to their desks and create a Venn diagram to compare and contrast the two books. We bring our ideas together as a class. If you wanted to add rigor here you could even have your students write a comparing essay about the two books!
For writing, we are finishing our research and creating a prewrite!
Today, we are reading two different paragraphs of the day. One is fiction and one is nonfiction. Then, we work on comparing and contrasting the two. These are quick and easy close reads. Guess what?! They are FREE at the bottom of this post!
We then create a bat directed drawing! This is an engaging way to work on direction following, plus it will look really cute with your writing! You can find the one I do by watching the video here!
For writing, we are doing our rough draft and then meeting with each other to edit and revise.
This is my favorite day of the week! It is BAT CAVE CHALLENGE day! The students will come into a classroom that is ready for a bat cave! You can make this as detailed of a transformation as you’d like! You can check out all of the pictures below to see how others have done it! These are teachers around the world who have amazed their students with rigor and engagement!
The students will then learn that their teacher has a broken wing and that they need to finish some challenges in order to earn their wings to fly back to the cave.
The students have four challenges and each challenge earns them something to get back to the cave.
For writing, we are finishing up our final drafts, adding our directed drawing, and sharing our writing with the class!
That is a TON of fun and a TON of learning for one week! The kids LOVE every second!
By putting your email below you will get the entire plans ready to print! In the plans you will also find the FREE main idea and detail bat, plus the FREE paragraph of the day!