Meredith Pedersen

I. Rationale:
Comprehension is the main goal of reading. Students must be able to understand what they are reading, and this becomes more difficult for them as they start to read more advanced material with fewer pictures. Visualization strategies can help them make ãpicturesä of the story in their heads, which will in turn make reading more enjoyable and fun. This lesson teaches children how to make ãmovies in their headä from what they read.

II. Materials

  • Hatchet by Gary Paulsen, 1 per student
  • Paper
  • Pencil
  • Colored pencils
  • Crayons
  • Sentence strips: I love going shopping with my mom. We go to the grocery store. I help her carry the bags.

III. Procedures
1. Explain the purpose of the lesson to students. ãToday we are going review how to read silently and then learn a new strategy ö visualization! First, letâs go over reading silently one more time. Does anyone know how we read silently? *Pause* Thatâs right, we are reading silently when we read the words inside our heads instead of out loud. Everyone, letâs open our silent reading books to any page we feel like and start reading out loud.ä Allow the students to do this for about 30 seconds. ãOkay, class. Now letâs read the page weâre on silently.ä Allow the students to do this for another 30 seconds. ãDoes everyone see the difference? Everything is so noisy when we read out loud, so weâre going to work extra hard at reading silently from now on! This will help us as we learn how to visualize text.ä

2. "In order for you to gain more skills as a reader, you must visualize the story in your head. Itâs kind of like imagining your very own movie of the story! To show you what I mean, weâre going to work on these sentences: I love going shopping with my mom. We go to the grocery store. I help her carry the bags. Class, before you do your own visualizations, I am going to model so you can have a better idea of how it works. So now youâll be able to see how I visualize myself shopping with my mom. Itâs a sunny Saturday, and Mom and I are going shopping again. We get out of the car and the warm wind blows at my face. Inside the store it is cool and there are lots of banging noises as people get their shopping carts. Mom and I choose all sorts of sweet-smelling fruits. We stand in line, and it is very noisy with so many people in the store, but I donât mind. As we leave, I help Mom carry big paper bags that are heavy in my arms. I love going shopping with Mom every time and hope we can come back next weekend!"

3. Now have the children try to visualize the text. ãI am going to read a few sentences from this book, and I want you to make a movie in your head and then tell me about your movie.ä Read a passage from Hatchet. Can anyone tell me what their movie was from these few sentences? Allow two students to share their visualization. ãExcellent work! Iâm going to read another passage, but this time itâs going to be two paragraphs, so your movies should be even longer this time.ä Read another passage from Hatchet, this time two paragraphs. Then have another two students share their visualizations with the class. By then, the students should have a better idea of how to visualize the events of a story.

4. Give the students a book talk on Hatchet. ãThis book is about a young boy named Brian. He is flying in an airplane to visit his father in Canada for the summer. Then something goes horribly wrong and the pilot dies while flying the plane! Somehow, Brian manages to land the plane in a lake and is able to escape. Now he is stuck in the Canadian wilderness with nothing but a small hatchet his mother gave him. How will Brian survive?ä Now pass out books to students. ãI want everyone to read the first chapter of this story. As you read, be sure to visualize and make a movie inside your head. Remember, we are doing this so we can have a better understanding of what we read!ä

5. When the students are finished reading the first chapter, have them illustrate one of their visualizations using a sheet of paper, colored pencils and crayons. They should also write down the page number(s) that their visualization covers in the book. As they finish their drawings, have each child explain and discuss their visualization individually.

IV. Assessment
The students will be assessed on their drawings and visualizations, using the checklist below.

( Yes / No ) The studentâs illustration accurately reflects a passage from the first chapter.
( Yes / No ) The student pays attention to detail.
( Yes / No ) The student includes the page number for the passage

V. References

<< Return to the Odysseys Index