Using a variety of informational text, students will explore places in their neighborhood.
- informational book on community, such as Community at Play (Newbridge)
- sticky notes
- chart paper
- corrective tape or cover up label tape
- highlighter tape
Background for Teachers
Students should be exposed to a variety of genres. Informational texts
are often overlooked. If children are given many opportunities to use
informational texts and discover how they work, they will be more
comfortable and familiar with them when they are older and the reading
is more complex. Kindergarten children can be taught the simple
features of informational texts such as the index, table of contents, labels
on pictures, and titles. Teachers should carefully choose high quality
informational texts which contain: 1) topics of high interest to the
children, 2) good quality photographs, 3) an appropriate amount of text
per page, and 4) illustrations that closely match the text.
Intended Learning Outcomes
Intended Learning Outcomes
1. Demonstrate a positive learning attitude.
Description, investigation, classification, conclusion formation
Invitation to Learn
Sing the song “Where are the places in my neighborhood?” (Use the
tune to the Sesame Street song “Who are the people in your neighborhood?”)
Have the children think of places in categories to substitute in the song such
“A playground is a place in my neighborhood, in my neighborhood, in
my neighborhood. A playground is a place in my neighborhood, a place where
I go to play.”
- Write down the list of places the children mentioned on chart paper.
- Show an informational text on the topic. Point out the title and tell what
a title is. Point out the capital and lowercase letters. Talk about the picture.
Ask the children if they have ever been to a similar place.
- Remind the children about the places listed on the chart. Model for the
class how to tell about a fun place in one minute by telling them about a
place you have visited here in the community that was fun. Have the children
then turn to a partner for one minute and tell their partner about where they
went and what they did. Then give the other partner one minute to tell their
experiences. Bring the class back together with a signal.
- Model questions for the children such as “I wonder if my place will
be in this book?” “ I wonder how the information is organized
in this book?” “ I wonder what the pictures will be like?”
- Browse through the book pointing out the bold print that indicates important
words to know, the pictures, the heading, etc. Place highlighter tape over
key words such as headings, vocabulary words, etc. Point out how the author
of an information book uses different tools other than fictional authors to
tell their message. Continue to wonder about things out loud to model for
- Read the book.
- Ask the children for their questions. Remind them they can say, “I
- As questions arise after reading the book, you can write them down on sticky
notes and put them on the book.
- Go back to the student-generated list of places to play. Ask the children
if the book reminded them of any other places to play in the community. Record
those responses in a different color.
- Tell the children “We will begin to make a class book about our community.
This chapter will be about places we play.”
- Model how this is done by creating the heading page “Places to Play”
as a class (interactive writing). Call up different children to write the
letter you tell them, modeling correct capitalization, left to right writing,
spacing, etc. At this age, do not worry about the words being on the lines
correctly. If a child makes a mistake, put corrective tape over it and try
- Draw a picture to go with the text. Show how this page meets the requirements
of a good informational text page (correct capitalization, correct letter
size, pictures that go with the text).
- Assign the children to draw a picture of their response and then label
under their picture by copying the words you dictated for them on the list.
Tell them you will be checking their pages for those three things in a rubric.
- Assemble the pages together for part of a class book. Read the book to
- Repeat the instructions for other chapters of the community book such as
“Places to eat,” “Places to shop,” etc.
Strategies for Diverse Learners
Differentiation of Instruction
If a child has difficulty copying from the board, cut the chart paper into strips
and let him take the word cards to his desk.
Some children might be ready to distinguish between places you go to play for
free, and others you have to pay to play. They can sort the places with separate
headings, or place a “$” symbol by those where you have to pay.
- Class can tally how many children have been to each of those places.
- A dramatic play can be set up like one of the places.
- Children can create one of the places in their block center.
- Oral story problems can be given relating to the places (e.g., “If
my sister and I are at the park, and two friends join us to play ball, how
many people are at the park?” “If four of us went to the skating
rink, but one friend had to go home, how many are left?”).
- Have families send in pictures of the children at those fun places. Display
in the class.
- Have families do a shape hunt, number hunt, or letter hunt at one of those
places. The student can then share the information with the class.
During the interactive writing, assess sound/letter relationships. Use the
following rubric to assess writing:
- Correct capitalization
- Letters correct size
- Picture goes with text