Welcome to Saturday School, my weekly series to share ideas, lesson plans and instructional strategies. Feel free to leave a link in the comment section if you have shared any of the above recently! Last week, we learned how to make a simple circuit and Renae from Life Nurturing Education shared Finding Life in Dry Lessons which is well worth the read if you have not already done so!
This week, I am sharing a type of “little book” that you can make with your child to teach some of the popular “circular stories” and begin teaching the interdependent nature of introductions and conclusions in a very tactile way.
Q: What is a circular story?
A: Essentially a story that goes around in a big circle to end up where it started. Laura Joffe Numeroff has become famous with her circular stories, including If You Give a Mouse a Cookie.
Two paper plates (I’m using card stock cut into a circle for this.)
1. Divide the story up into seventeen segments. The first and last have to be the same sentence. This will be a summary and it is ok to leave out some parts of the book.
2. Take your two paper plates and fold them in half and then in half again. Open to reveal the quarters.
3. Cut along one of the fold lines to the center of the circle on each paper plate. Position the plates so that cut is facing down. The markings A and B are for your convenience in these directions and are not necessary to mark on your plates.
4. Tape the B edge of the top plate to the A edge of the bottom plate. This is your book. You will put one of each of the segments onto each “page.” As you turn pages, the book will turn itself over twice and you will end up back on page one. Here, you can see the spiral you have created.
To demonstrate how the pages turn, I have them numbered here:
1. Encourage your children to make up their own circle stories. They can include illustrations to take up some of the pages if a sixteen page book is too long.
2. Talk about how other stories could be adapted to fit onto the circle book. Pay particular attention to the introduction and conclusion. What is similar? What is different? How does the beginning of the book relate to the end?
3. For an older child, examine some examples of circular reasoning using this as an illustration of common reasoning flaws.
And with that, your child has had the opportunity to make a physical connection between the beginning and the end of a circular story, practice this unique story type in his own writing and been provided a sound, kinesthetic introduction to one of the most difficult aspects of writing: the relationship between the introduction and the conclusion.
I hope you enjoyed this week’s Saturday School. Feel free to leave links to any lesson ideas you have had recently and would like to share.
[tags]homeschooling, homeschool, little books, reading, writing[/tags]