Teaching literature to young students is one of my favorite things to teach! Helping students learn how character actions contribute to the sequence of events in a narrative text is key to good reading comprehension.
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Authors want readers to follow the main characters through the story, from identifying the problem to the resolution at the end of the story. But what makes reading fun and interesting is what happens along the way. It’s the thing that keeps us engaged – even riveted to a story.
When teaching this skill to 3rd graders, you need a text that has strong characters and a good plot with a clear problem and solution.
This Character Traits Close Reading Pack starts with an engaging 3rd-grade text with a solid plot. It’s the story of Jared and a challenge he faces when summer arrives. Students will discover what character traits influence his actions and how they lead to the solution.
Where to Begin the Lesson on How Character Actions Contribute to Sequence of Events:
This resource includes an anchor chart of the steps that students can follow to find how his actions contribute to the sequence of events as well as a Character Traits, Motivations, and Emotions chart.
This is the perfect place to begin this lesson.
- Create a Character class anchor chart on large chart paper that students can easily see from their workplace.
- While students work on the text, give them student copies of the steps.
Getting the Gist on the 1st Reading
Your students will read the text the first time to get the gist of the story. As they read, they can use this quick Post It notes sheet to answer some basic overall questions.
Sequence Graphic Organizer
During the second reading, students will dig into the text to identify major events and the actions on this sequence organizer. This is where they will begin to identify character actions and connect those to the sequence of events.
Comprehension Questions That Help Students Understand How Character Actions Contribute to the Sequence of Events
The activities that students have completed up to this point set the stage for them to respond to these comprehension questions including constructed responses and multiple choice.
Students are required to cite text evidence when responding to the comprehension questions. If you need help teaching students how to do this, check out this blog post with helpful tips and a freebie!
Figurative Language Activity
There’s also a fun activity sheet that will help your students with figurative language, which is a difficult skill for 3rd graders and one that they need to practice often!
This Character Actions Close Reading Pack is perfect for a 2 – 3 day lesson on R.L. 3.3 – Describe characters in a story (e.g., traits, motivations, and feelings) and explain how their actions contribute to the sequence of events.
I hope this 3rd Grade Reading Resource for R.L.3.3 helps you target this important skill in a manageable and organized way for your students! In what ways do you teach this skill? I would love to hear your great ideas!
The most valuable resource that all teachers have is each other. Without collaboration our growth is limited to our own perspectives.Robert John Meehan
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