1.2.3. CLICK! I SEE IT!

Reading to Learn
Tammy Feely

Rationale:  As students move up in grades, their reading comprehension gets better.  A major factor of comprehension is visualization.  Visualization is the ability to be able to create images in your head from either text that you read or text that is read aloud to you.  Visualization is especially important in fourth or fifth grade, because children are reading less picture books and more expository text.  This lesson will help children learn to create their own pictures in their heads so that they can better comprehend what they are reading.


           Frindle by Andrew Clements (one copy per student)

            Notebook (one per student)

            One Copy of “The Flattered Flying Fish” by E.V. Rieu (teacher)

            “I Wish I Could Meet the Man That Knows” by John Ciardi (one copy per student)


            Colored Pencils


1.  Quick review of silent reading. Say:  “Class,  we have learned how to read silently to ourselves.  When we read silently to ourselves, it is              important that we read the words inside our head, so that no one else can hear us.  If you need to, it’s alright to VERY QUIETLY whisper them so that only you can hear yourself.  Silent reading is very good because it allows us to spend time by ourselves and let our imagination fly with what     we are reading.  Today, I am going to pass out a poem to each of you.  It is called, 'I Wish  I Could Meet the Man That Knows' by John Ciardi.      Let me tell you a little bit about this poem.  It is about a boy who is trying to save his father from a crazy fly.  The boy intends to hit the fly but         instead, he smacks the father flat on the nose!  Well, the father isnt too happy about this one!  Will the boy get punished?  To find out, I want you   to silently read the poem by yourself, and flip it over when you are finished.  Please stay quiet so that everyone can concentrate!  Any questions?  Alright, begin!"

2.  Wait until every student has finished reading.  Say:  "Did you enjoy the poem?  I heard some of you giggle!  Why did you giggle?  Were you                 picturing what was going on inside of your head?  Can someone share with me what they saw?"  Allow students to share what they saw in their                 heads while reading.

3.  Say:  “That’s so awesome.  When I read, my brain automatically created an image of the little boy trying to swat the fly, but instead of aiming correctly, I pictured the boy missing and SMACK! He hit his father hard on the nose! I then saw the father jumping up, startled, not sure of what was going on!  I found the poem to be pretty funny.  I also find it so interesting how our brains can automatically create images while we are reading silently.  But, did you know that our brain can create images while we are having something read to us?”

4.  Have the students pass back in the poem.  Say: “O.K.  I want everyone to clear off your desk.  I am going to read you something else, and I want everyone to close their eyes.  While I am reading, I just want you to concentrate on what is going on in this poem.  Picture in your mind what is going on.  Everyone settled?  Alright, let’s begin.  This poem is called ‘The Flattered Flying Fish,’ by E.V. Rieu.”  Read the rest of the poem to the class. 

5.  Say:  “O.K.  Everyone can open their eyes now.  I want some volunteers to share some images that they saw while I was reading the poem             aloud.”  Allow students to share their responses.

6.  Explain visualization.  Say: “The point of reading both of those poems, one silently to ourselves and one read to us, is to show you guys that when you either read something, or hear something that’s being read to you, your brain automatically creates images of what you are reading or  listening to.  This process is called visualization.  Your brain is so complex and awesome that it can automatically take the information that is presented to you (either visually or through hearing) and create pictures so that you can understand what is going on better.  Your brain is like a big camera.  Every time you get new information, your brain creates a picture so that you can better understand what is going on.  Your brain stores those pictures that it captured so that you can line everything up in your mind to  make more sense of what is going on.  That’s pretty amazing, huh?" 

7.  Book Talk.  Say:  “In front of me is one of my personal favorites.  Now, I know many of you love to joke around with your friends, but how do you know when the joke has gone too far?  This book is called Frindle.  Have you ever heard of the word frindle?  You haven’t!  Why not?  A frindle is a pen, and my friend, Nick Allen, has created this word.  Well, the word catches on and soon everyone starts saying frindle.  Can Nick stop the joke he created, or is it too late?  To find out, you must read Frindle!"

8.  Hand out a copy of Frindle to each student.

9.  Say:  “Alright students.  Does everyone have a copy of Frindle?  You do, good!  Well, what I want you to do is to silently read the first chapter     to yourself.  Practice your silent reading and don’t forget about those pictures that your brain will create.  When you finish, I want you to take out     your notebook and on a clean sheet of paper, jot down some words to describe the images that your mind created.  When you are done, sit tight         until everyone has finished.”

10.Wait until everyone has finished reading and jotting down their notes.  Say:  “Alright, I want you to get into groups of three and share the images that you saw.”  Allow children to break off into groups and discuss for about 5 or so minutes.

11.  Get the class’ attention.  Say: “Alright students.  Did you guys notice some differences and similarities in the images that you noted down?  That’s O.K. if there were some differences.  These differences help us to come together to see our own individuality because sometimes, different parts of a passage means different things to each other.  One thing that caught your attention might not catch your neighbor’s attention, but that’s O.K.  Now, what I want you to do is to read the second chapter silently to yourself and when you have finished, put the book down for a second and try to think of the most memorable part of the passage.  After you think of it, pick the book back up and try to find it.  Get out your notebook and colored pencils and draw a picture of what you imagined.  You may use the text as reference, but make sure that you mark the page that you are referring to.”

12. Give the children ample time to read and color.  Assist if needed.

13.  When everyone has finished, gather their attention.  Say:  “Boys and girls, I would like to know what part of the second chapter created a strong image in your mind.  Would anyone like to volunteer to come up and share their image with the class?"

14.  Allow students to share.  Say:  "Boys and girls, you all did such a great job today with visualization.  I hope you all are enjoying Frindle.  Every day, we are goin gto be reading a chapter or two and creating an image for each chapter.  You guys create some of the best images in your mind and I want to see what you capture on paper."

15.  Assessment: 
After finishing the book, take up the student's notebook and select three random chapters per student  to evaluate how clearly they understood the chosen passage of choice.  Artistic ability will not be graded.  I will only look at how well the individual was able to relate what they read in relation to their image.  I will grade with the following outline:                                   
                                     A.  Did the student choose a passage for the chapter?
                                     B.  Did the student write the page number down?
                                     C.  Is the picture relevant to the passage?
                                     D.  Does the picture clearly convey what the passage is expressing?



Ciardi, John.  "I Wish I Could Meet the Man That Knows."  The Random House Book of Poetry for Children.
    Ed.  Jack Prelutsky.  New York:  Random House, 1983.  134.

Clements, Andrew.  Frindle.  Selznick, Brian, illus.  1996.  New York:  Scholastic, Inc.

McWilliams, Jordan.  Picture This!  http://www.auburn.edu/rdggenie/connect/mcwilliamsrl.htm

Rieu, E.V.  "The Flattered Flying Fish."  The Random House Book of Poetry for Children.  Ed.
    Jack Prelutsky.  New York:  Random House, 1983. 77.

Williams, Andrea.  Picture It! http://www.auburn.edu/rdggenie/connect/williamsrl.html

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The Flattered Flying Fish

Said the Shark to the Flying Fish over the phone:

"Will you join me tonight?  I am dining alone.

Let me order a nice little dinner for two!

And come as you are, in your shimmering blue.”


Said the Flying Fish:  “Fancy remembering me,

And the dress that I wore at the Porpoises’ tea!”

“How could I forget?” said the Shark in his guile:

“I expect you at eight!” and rang off with a smile.


She powdered her nose; she has put on her things;

She is off with one flap of her luminous wings.

O little one, lovely, light-hearted and vain,

The Moon will not shine on your beauty again!

I Wish I Could Meet the Man That Knows

               John Ciardi

I wish I could meet the man that knows

Who put the fly on my daddy’s nose

When my daddy was taking a nap today.

I tried to slap that fly away

So Daddy could sleep.  But just as my hand

Came down to slap him, the fly jumped AND


I hit with a bang – where do you suppose? –




“Ow!” cried Daddy, and up he jumped.

He jumped so hard that he THUMP-


His head on the wall.

            Well, I tried to say,

“See, Daddy, I slapped the fly away.”

And I should think he would have thanked me.

But what do you think he did?  He

            SPANKED me!


“I was just trying to help!” I said.

But Daddy was looking very red.

“For trying to help, I have to thank you.

But for that smack on the nose, I’ll spank         


And up in the air went his great big hand

As he said, “I hope you understand

It’s my nose I’m spanking for, not the fly.

For the fly I thank you.”


                        And that is why

I wish I could meet the man that knows

Who put the fly on my daddy’s nose.

For when I find him, I want to thank him.

And as I do, I want to spank him.