Reading is Fun!

Reading to Learn


Hannah Jackson


Comprehension is an ultimate goal of reading. Comprehension is the ability to understand the meaning or importance of something read. In this lesson, students will use comprehension strategies so that they can understand and retain the information they are reading. Students will learn to ask questions about story structure in order to better understand the text prior to reading, while reading, and after reading as well as examine key components such as main characters, conflict, and resolution.


List these questions on a piece of paper for the story map:

Who is the main character(s)?, b) Where and when did the story/chapter take place?, c) What did the characters do?, d) How did the story/chapter end?, e) How did the main character(s) feel?

2 Story Maps for each student: (and one on the board that can be filled in multiple times)

Stellaluna, copy for each student

A to Z Mysteries, The Talking T-Rex, copy for each student


1. Introduce the lesson by talking about what good readers are and what they do. Good readers pay attention while they are reading and after reading, they can retell the story and summarize what happened in the story and they can also point out the main points of the story. After reading, good readers need to know the characters, settings, and plot of the story. We are going to read a story today and we are going to practice asking these questions as we read.

2. Introduce the familiar book with a book talk. We will be reading Stellaluna. It is a book about a baby fruit bat, named Stellaluna who is happily flying along with her mother when an owl attacks. Stellaluna is knocked out of her mother's grip and lands in a birds' nest. Stellaluna is accepted by the mother bird as long as she acts like a bird, not a bat. So, Stellaluna learns to eat bugs and stop hanging by her feet. When she finally has a chance to show her bird siblings, Pip, Flutter and Flap, what life as a bat is like, they are confused by how they can be so alike and different at the same time.  What do you think will happen to Stellaluna? Do you think she will stay with the birds? Discuss these questions with the class. Also, discuss what the word lunar means with the class. Stellaluna comes from another word. Lunar relates to the word Moon. Why do you think Stellaluna has that name? Is it because she flies at night? Why do Bats fly at night? Which word relates to the word Lunar? Night or day? Great job! Then read the book, have each child buddy read the book to a partner. Then bring class back together and discuss the stories key elements.

3. Pass out the story chart to each child. Tell them that as we discuss the story and its key elements, we will be filling in this chart. I will have this chart projected onto the smartboard and fill in along with the class. Class, let’s start by filling in the title and author of the book. Then the main characters, then add in the setting, where the book takes place. Now, who are the supporting characters of this story? They are not the main characters, but they do have an important role in the story. Great! Now, what is the problem in this story? Good, not how do they fix that problem, or what is the solution to that problem? Great job! We just filled out our story chart!

4. Now you all get to show me what you just learned! I am going to give you all another story chart and a copy of A to Z Mysteries, The Talking T-Rex. This story is about Dink Duncan and he likes to read mystery books. He also likes to solve crimes and capers in real life. Along with his two best friends, Josh and Ruth Rose, Dink unravels mysteries in his hometown of Green Lawn, Connecticut-and sometimes far away from home, too, at places like a dude ranch in Montana and a castle in Maine. Follow the clues along with Dink and his friends on each of their adventures! We will read this book silently to ourselves.  What does this mean?  Good, you are not to talk or move your mouth and you are to sit in your desk and read.  Afterwards, I want you to use your knowledge and fill in the story chart just like we did for Stellaluna. As the students read and fill in their chart, the teacher will monitor to make sure they are on task.

5. Once they are finished filling in their charts, I will pair them off and they will discuss with their partner the book, what they thought about it, and how they filled in their chart. Once they have had time to discuss it with their partner, we will discuss it as a class and fill in the chart on the board.

6. Fill in the chart. Tell all the students they did a great job today and I am very proud of what they learned about story grammar!

7. For assessment, I will check all of their charts to make sure they filled them in correctly to make sure they understand the concept. For further assessment, they could take an Accelerated Reader test on the book.


 Cannon, Janell.  Stellaluna (Harcourt Children's Books, April 30, 1993).

Lyndsey Ford, “Meatballs, Meatballs Go Away.”

Roy, Ron "A to Z Mysteries, The Talking T Rex"

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