In today's lesson I will engage my students in a discussion about the story details and the importance of being honest. At the end of the lesson we will draw a picture about the main idea in response to listening to the story. It is important for my students to be able to identify the main idea of a story so they can form an opinion, answer questions about it or write a paper about it. We will draw a picture as a narrative piece and orally explain the main idea to the class.
My students are seated on the carpet for whole group reading blcok.
"Just last week I had a pile of sweaters her on the counter that you found outside on the playground. Do you remember I had them on the counter and kept asking you if they belonged to any of you? One sweater was James' and all the other sweaters didn't belong to anyone in our class. Where did I put them? Yes, in the Lost and Found box. Why do we have a lost and found box at school? WOW, you are right. We put things there that are lost and hopefully someone will find it there. How many of you found something of yours in the lost and found? Naomi? What did you find in there? Oh, you left your lunchbox in the cafeteria and someone put it in the lost and found box. Were you sad when you couldn't find it? Yes, you even cried. How did you feel when you found it? Yes, you smiled so big and you were very happy. I am so glad that who ever found your lunchbox didn't keep it, that they put it in the lost and found. They say that if you turn something in to the lost and found box, that you are honest. If you keep what you find, you are not being honest. When we are honest, everyone is happy. You are happy because you turned in something and the owner is happy because they get it back."
"I am going to read a story to you about a little girl named Jamaica. She found two things on the playground and we will find out what she did with them."
"The name of our story today is; Jamaica's Find. I want you to listen to see what choices she makes and how that makes her feel inside."
I begin reading the story. We discuss the playground equipment and what Jamaica will play on.
"Jamaica found the hat and the stuffed dog. What did she do with the hat? How did she feel when she gave it to the lost and found? She felt happy. What did she do with the dog? Hmmmm, how does she feel? She is happy? Well at first she seems happy, let's see what happens when she gets home."
I read a little more. We get to the part where the mother talks to Jamaica in her room.
"Jamaica went to her room. How does she feel? She is feeling sad. Why is she feeling sad? She is feeling sad because she knows she was wrong in taking the dog. Why was it wrong? Because the dog is not hers. She is not being honest by keeping the dog. Her mother told her the dog probably belongs to a little boy or girl that is sad because it is gone. What should Jamaica do? Give it back to the lost and found. What a great idea."
"I want to talk about how we would feel if we lost something. Let's turn to your partner and tell them "Hi, Partner". I want you to tell your partner how you would feel if someone found something of yours and they did not give it back? Use the sentence frame "I would feel ____." Now tell your partner if you would feel sad or not if you lost something. Ready, "I would feel ___."
I walk around the group and listen to make sure they are all participating. Partner sharing is important because it gives my students the opportunity to talk using proper sentence structure. Kindergarteners need multiple opportunities to 'talk' using academic language.
"When you have told your partner how you would feel, put your hands on your head. Pleas give your partners a High Five and turn around and look at me. How many of you would feel sad if you lost something? Yes, I would feel really sad if I lost something and someone found it and kept it. Hmmmmm, Let's see what Jamaica does with the dog in the morning."
I continue to read.
"Jamaica met a new friend at the park named Kristen. Do you think Kristen lost her dog? Do you think Jamaica will tell Kristen where it is? Would you turn again to your partner and tell your partner what you think about Kristen. Will she be happy? Use the sentence frame; Kristen will be ___. Ready, Kristen will be _____. Hand on heads when finished. Give your partner a high five and turn to look at me. What do you think? Yes, I think she will be very happy to get her dog back."
When I finish the story we discuss why Jamaica changed her mind.
"Yes, I think she began to feel bad that she took the dog. How do you think Jamaica felt when she saw how happy Kristen was to get her dog back? Yes, I think she was very glad that she gave it back. Jamaica was so smart to give the dog back to lost and found."
It is important that my students identify the main idea of a story or text. In upper grades they will have difficult text to read and write about. I am laying the foundation for that skill here in kindergarten. It is also important for my students to be able to orally explain or read their papers in front of the class. This is another skill that I introduce and work on in kindergarten that is part of their ELA foundation. It is scary at the beginning of the year to have to stand in front of the class and orally read or explain their papers. We begin with drawings and move on to read whole papers written by them. This activity gets easier with each opportunity.
"I want you to think about the part of the story that is the most important. Was it when Jamaica gave the dog to the lost and found? Was it when Jamaica told Kristen where her dog was? Once you have thought of what part is important, we will draw a picture and explain our picture to the class." Your job is to draw a picture about what happened in the story."
"Would my class helpers please pass out the drawing papers. Girls, quietly walk to your cubbies and get your pencil boxes. Boys, quietly walk to your cubbies and get your pencil boxes. What is your job? Yes, you are going to draw a detailed picture about the story and tell the class about it."
When all my students are finished with their drawing we gather on the carpet again. I sit on a chair in front of the class. I call my students up one at a time to orally explain their drawings. Every student is given the opportunity to orally present their work. We cheer and applaud after each oral presentations.