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Oak Lawn School Library: Fiction and Nonfiction

Essential Question

How can I tell the difference between fiction and nonfiction?

Lesson 1 - Night Animals

  • Introduction: Ask the students if they can explain what fiction and nonfiction are. Let them know the difference, then give some examples. (If I wrote about a sock monkey who flew to the moon in a toy car, would that be fiction or nonfiction? If I wrote a book about an elephant family that I had studied for a nature TV show, and I included photographs I had taken, would that be fiction or nonfiction?)

  • Readalouds and discussion: Read Skunks are Night Animals and ask the kids if it's fiction or nonfiction. Then read Night Animals by Gianna Marino and ask the same question. 

    Hold up the books and ask a student to come point out the call numbers. Let the kids know the call number can be another clue; nonfiction call numbers actually have numbers in them. 


  • Activity: Put out the sciencewithme Nocturnal Animals coloring page.

  • Video: Once kids are finished checking out, show the Peppa Pig Night Animals episode.

Lesson 3 - Sloths

Lesson to come: I usually do this in the spring during PARCC, since we read multiple books to compare facts, which takes up time that would otherwise be used for checkout.

 

Lesson 2 - A Home for Hermit Crab

  • Introduction: Review the difference between fiction and nonfiction.

  • Readalouds and discussion: Read Animal Homes and ask the kids if it's fiction or nonfiction. Then read A House for Hermit Crab by Eric Carle (asking the kids to tell you the next month on each page) and ask the same question.

    Hold up the books and ask a student to come point out the call numbers. Let the kids know the call number can be another clue; nonfiction call numbers actually have numbers in them. 

     
  • Activity: Put out the coloring page below. 
     
  • Video: Once kids are finished checking out, show the Blue World video of a hermit crab changing shells ... and bringing her sea anenomes with her!
     
  • Extension: The Wild Kratts have an episode posted on YouTube all about hermit crabs ... which parts are fiction? Which parts are nonfiction?
     

Standards Addressed

AASL1.1.4 - Find, evaluate, and select appropriate sources to answer questions (this is the standard under which fiction/nonfiction officially falls); 2.1.4 - Collaborate with others to exchange ideas, develop new understandings, make decisions, and solve problems3.1.2 - Participate and collaborate as members of a social and intellectual network of learners; 4.1.1 - Read, view, and listen for pleasure and personal growth; 

Common Core: R.L.K.1 - With prompting and support, ask and answer questions about key details in a text; R.I.K.10 - Actively engage in group reading activities with purpose and understanding