The Spider Web of Knowledge

Reading to Learn

Amy ONeal



One of the most important goals in reading is reading comprehension. Questions are key to determining a childs reading comprehension. Teaching students to ask themselves questions while they are reading will enhance their reading comprehension and give them the ability to pick out key events. Reading to understand, comprehend and interpret takes strategy. It is dependent on the teacher to teach beginning readers these strategies. This lesson design will provide an opportunity to teach students how to read critically in order to develop reading comprehension.



Dry erase board

Dry erase markers

Class set of poster boards

Class set of the book, Dangers! Earthquakes

Class set of markers

Class set of spider cut outs



  1. We will begin the lesson by discussing what it means to summarize a book or story. I will explain to the students why it is important to pick out the key events and concepts while reading. Being able to pick out key events and having the ability to summarize a story in which they have just read is an ultimate goal for reading success.

When we read, we are reading for meaning. Whenever we read something we learn something new. That is why reading is so important to our development. Today we are going to learn a strategy that will help us map out what we are reading and define the a story line.

  1. I will remind the students that when we are reading we read with fluency and expression. I will remind them how we have practiced this before. I will tell the students that when we read and come across unfamiliar words or a sentence that does not make sense, we simply go back and cross check ourselves.

Now that we are expert readers when it comes to fluency and reading with expression we are going to focus on reading for meaning. When we are reading for meaning, we are reading a text not only with fluency and expression but also concentrating on the message in the text. Whenever you come across a word of group of words that dont make sense remember to always go back and cross check yourself and use sentence structure to help you determine what the sentence is trying to tell you

  1. I will explain to the students how when we read it is important to note the important events of a book.

Class when we are reading it is important to understand the important parts of a book. When we pick out the main events and characters while reading a book it helps us better understand what we are reading. Today we are going to learn a new strategy that helps us do this. When we read we need to first note the subject that we are reading about. Secondly while we are reading we need to take note on the main events, as they are unveiled. We are going to do a fun activity that will teach us how to do this!


4. I will explain to the class the spider web of knowledge. I will use myself as an example of how you construct a web. This will teach the students how to take understand and pick out the key events of a book.

Okay class today we are going to learn about the spider web of knowledge. Now when we are reading a book we need to pick out the key events in order for us to have a better comprehension. I am going to teach you one strategy that will help you do this. Lets use me as an example. Here is my spider. (Show cut out of spider to class)  I am going to be the main subject, which we are talking about so I am going to write my name on the spider. (Next I will place the spider on to the poster board). Okay so I am the main subject and we are going to make a web of key facts that you know about me. (Students will give key facts that they know about me and I will draw lines from the spider and write the facts they know beside the line.)

At the completion of this activity I will explain to the students that this is one strategy we can use when reading a book.


5. Next I will explain the follow up activity. The students will be given the opportunity to construct their own spider web of knowledge.

Okay now that we have completed a spider web of knowledge with the whole class, you will construct your own but it will be on a different subject. I am going to give each one of you a book about earthquakes. When you are finished reading the book you will join with your partner and make your own spider web of knowledge on the book you have just read. Remember the web is consisted of key facts that were important throughout the book. Place your main subject on the spiders back and then begin making your own spider web.


Assessment: I will assess the students by having them share their spider web of knowledge. I will be able to assess the students comprehension by how well they illustrated the main events. I will also be able to assess the students reading comprehension by having a class discussion about the book in which we all read.



Simon, Seymour. Danger! Earthquakes. New York, NY. Scholastic. (2002).

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