Cluster 1: Text Types and PurposesArchived

General Information
Number: LAFS.4.W.1
Title: Text Types and Purposes
Type: Cluster
Subject: English Language Arts - Archived
Grade: 4
Strand: Writing Standards

Related Standards

This cluster includes the following benchmarks.

Related Access Points

This cluster includes the following access points.

Access Points

LAFS.4.W.1.AP.1a
Introduce the topic or text within persuasive writing by stating an opinion.
LAFS.4.W.1.AP.1b
Provide reasons that include relevant facts and details that support a stated opinion.
LAFS.4.W.1.AP.1c
Create an organizational structure that lists reasons in a logical order.
LAFS.4.W.1.AP.1d
Use transitional words and phrases appropriately to link opinion and reasons.
LAFS.4.W.1.AP.1e
Provide a concluding statement or section related to the opinion presented.
LAFS.4.W.1.AP.2a
Introduce a topic clearly and group related information in paragraphs and sections.
LAFS.4.W.1.AP.2b
Develop the topic (add additional information related to the topic) with relevant facts, definitions, concrete details, quotations or other information and examples related to the topic.
LAFS.4.W.1.AP.2c
Include formatting (e.g., headings), illustrations and multimedia when appropriate to convey information about the topic.
LAFS.4.W.1.AP.2d
Link ideas within categories of information, appropriately using words and phrases (e.g., another, for example, also, because).
LAFS.4.W.1.AP.2e
Use increasingly precise language and domain-specific vocabulary over time to inform about or explain a variety of topics.
LAFS.4.W.1.AP.2f
Provide a concluding statement or section to support the information presented.
LAFS.4.W.1.AP.3a
Orient the reader by setting up the context for the story and introducing a narrator and/or characters.
LAFS.4.W.1.AP.3b
Sequence events in writing that unfold naturally.
LAFS.4.W.1.AP.3c
When appropriate, use dialogue and description to develop experiences and events or show the responses of characters to situations.
LAFS.4.W.1.AP.3d
Use a variety of transitional words and phrases to manage the sequence of events.
LAFS.4.W.1.AP.3e
Use concrete words and phrases and sensory details to convey experiences and events.
LAFS.4.W.1.AP.3f
Provide a conclusion (concluding sentence, paragraph or extended ending) that follows from the narrated experiences or events.

Related Resources

Vetted resources educators can use to teach the concepts and skills in this topic.

Lesson Plans

Gr. 4 Lesson 3-I'm In Big Trouble!:

Students will be able to define the terms threatened, endangered, and extinct and analyze the impact of humans and other living things as a result of human, social, economic, and political activities. Students will also be able to name three endangered species living in the Everglades. 

Type: Lesson Plan

Lesson #3 - Moon Phase Unit:

This is the final lesson in the Moon Phase unit. In this lesson, students will complete an algorithm sheet to understand how they can connect the flowchart model to real-world programming. It also gives an insight to various blocks used in Scratch and their significance. This lesson allows students to program in Scratch based on the flowchart model made in the previous lesson and switch the costumes based on the operational conditions placed on the sprite. The final product in this lesson will showcase the students' conceptual understanding of the Moon phases in a computer science medium.

Type: Lesson Plan

Design a Dune:

Students work in teams to rank and determine which vegetation is best for a coastal dune restoration project.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Jackson Whole Wyoming:

This lesson helps students understand how increasing what they know about disabilities can improve their attitudes and relationships with other students. Jackson Whole Wyoming tells the story of how Tyler explores his own feelings about students who are different and the real meaning of friendship with a boy named Jackson, who has Asperger syndrome. This lesson addresses the following language arts skills: referring to details and examples in text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when making inferences; describing in depth a character, setting, or event in a story, drawing on details from the text; and writing opinion pieces in response to a text-based question, supporting a point of view with reasons and information.

Type: Lesson Plan

What Did You Say Happened to the Everglades?:

In this lesson, students will conduct a close reading of an informational article about pythons in the Everglades. Students will use a variety of strategies to determine the meaning of selected academic words in context, and they will sort selected tier 3 words into categories and examine the relationships between words in a category. Students will also answer text-dependent questions about the article and identify and describe the cause/effect structure used throughout the article. Students will complete an informational paragraph about the events that are occurring in the Everglades using text evidence to support their ideas. Graphic organizers, answer keys, and a writing rubric have been provided with the lesson.

Type: Lesson Plan

How Important is the Amazon Rainforest?:

In this lesson, students will conduct a close reading of an informational article about the destruction of the Amazon rain forest. Students will use a variety of strategies to determine the meaning of selected academic words in context, and they will sort selected tier 3 words into categories and examine the relationships between words in a category. Students will also answer text-dependent questions about the article and identify and describe the cause/effect structure used throughout the article. Students will write an informational paragraph about the events that are occurring in the Amazon rain forest. Graphic organizers, answer keys, and a writing rubric have been provided with the lesson.

Type: Lesson Plan

The Tree that Saved the Day!:

In this lesson, students will conduct a close reading of an informational picture book about a community in Africa that is saved by the planting of mangrove trees. Students will use a variety of strategies to determine the meaning of selected academic words in context. Students will also answer text-dependent questions about the book and identify and describe the cause/effect structure used throughout the book. Graphic organizers, answer keys, and a writing rubric have been provided with the lesson.

Type: Lesson Plan

Close Reading: Phineas L. MacGuire Gets Slimed:

This is a close reading lesson on Chapter 1 of Phineas L. MacGuire Gets Slimed by Frances O'Roark Dowell. It includes graphic organizers, a writing prompt, and a rubric. Students will use context clues to discover the meaning of unknown words, answer text-dependent questions, complete a character analysis, and write an opinion piece.

Type: Lesson Plan

Robotics on a Budget:

The P.T.A. President at ABC Elementary needs your students' help in selecting a robotics model that fits the needs of the students and the after school enrichment program. There is a budget of $2,000 that the students must adhere to. Students will be asked rank 4 models based on criteria given to them and the budget. Students will be given a data set to help them develop a procedure for doing so. In their teams they will write a letter to the P.T.A President giving their procedures and explanation of the strategy they used. Students will practice adding, subtracting and multiplying numbers to the thousands in order to calculate the amount of models that can be bought of a certain model without going over the budget. Rubrics are included to help grade students.

Type: Lesson Plan

Kudos for Kicks - MEA:

In this MEA, students will work in collaborative groups to solve multi-step problems with whole numbers and decimals by using different mathematical operations of addition, subtraction, and multiplication. The students will be asked to assist a discount shoe store owner, who is planning a one day sale promotion, to choose a famous brand sneaker to feature for the one day sale. Students will determine which one will bring in more customers, as well as provide the most profit. Students will need to read a data table, rank the famous brand sneakers from 1-6, calculate the total profit margin per pair, and the total sales potential profit margin determined by the number of sneakers in stock. A twist is added to the problem when additional stock items are added, plus one of the brands is removed and two new brands are added.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Playground Perimeter:

In this Model Eliciting Activity (MEA), students are asked to help rank possible locations for a new park. They will need to perform certain calculations as part of the process, such as finding the unknown factor in a perimeter and area formula and multiply 2-digit by 1- and 2-digit numbers to calculate total costs.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Field Day Fractions:

This is a Model Eliciting Activity (MEA) activity which requires the students to convert fractions to decimals, order the decimals, and then design a process for ranking the classrooms from quantitative and qualitative data and then re-test their procedure on a new set of data. Ultimately, the students have to write a letter explaining and supporting the step-by-step process they used.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

The Cookie Jar Wants a New Cookie!:

This lesson asks students to recommend which cookie the owners of The Cookie Jar should add to their menu. Before they make their decision, the students have to convert fractions so they have like denominators. Once they have converted the fractions they will be able to see exactly how many people voted for each cookie and they can factor in that information along with additional cookie facts to make their final recommendation.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

We All Scream for ICE CREAM - MEA:

In this MEA, students will work in collaborative groups to solve multi-step problems with whole numbers, fractions, decimals and percent by using different mathematical operations. The students will be asked to assist an ice cream shop owner, who is planning a promotional program "Flavor of the Month," to rank the ice cream flavors based on the data provided. Students will need to read a data table, rank the flavors, convert the fraction amount to a percent and decimal and per serving costs to a decimal as well. A twist is added to the problem when one of the flavors is too expensive to make because of seasonal availability but two new flavors are added to be calculated. An additional twist is given by adding an adult survey to the second data table. The students will need to recalculate the new percent and decimals for the additional flavors.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Take Time to Tile - MEA:

In this MEA, students will work in collaborative groups to solve multistep problems with whole numbers and decimals by using different mathematical operations such as addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. The students will be asked to assist a property owner, who is planning to retile his kitchen and family room floors, with purchasing the best quality tiles for the least amount of money. Students will need to read a data table, rank the tile companies from best to worst, calculate the amount of tiles needed according to the area, and determine the total cost to retile the kitchen and family room. A twist is added to the problem when one of the tile companies goes out of business, but two new companies are added. An additional twist will be that the homeowner has decided to tile his bathroom as well. The students will need to reevaluate the tile companies as well as recalculate the total costs to include tile for the bathroom.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Traveling to the Moon MEA:

This MEA is designed to help students create a process for selecting a Space Shuttle to send to the moon given the particular criteria provided. Students will master the Science Standard SC.4.E.5.2: Describe the changes in the observable shape of the moon over the course of about a month . Students will also practice and reinforce the Math Standard MAFS.4.MD.1.2: Use the four operations to solve word problems involving distances, intervals of time, and money, including problems involving simple fractions or decimals. Represent fractional quantities of distance and intervals of time using linear models. Students will also practice ELA Standard LAFS.4.W.2.4: Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development and organization are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Number the Stars: A Lesson about Setting:

This close reading lesson will take students on a journey through a brief historical fiction account of the Holocaust, Number the Stars by Lois Lowry. In the targeted passage the students will determine if and how the setting changes. The students will have opportunities to respond to and discuss several thought-provoking, open-ended questions about the setting. The students will also be given the opportunity to reflect and discuss ideas about the events of the historical account.

Type: Lesson Plan

The Power of Words!:

The passage selected for this lesson comes from the book The Well written by Mildred Taylor. In this close reading lesson, students will analyze the characters' thoughts, words, and actions, learning how words influence the mind and drive the tone of the story.

Type: Lesson Plan

Donuts and Decimals:

In this MEA, students will convert fractions into decimals and then compare the decimals to decide which donut a donut shop should add to their menu.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Comparing Fractions with Cupcakes:

In this MEA, students will compare fractions with different denominators to decide which cupcake a bakery should add to their menu.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

If Animals Could Talk: Writing Fables:

In this lesson, students will analyze and discuss the characteristics and story lines of two different fables, "The Owl and The Grasshopper" and "The Town Mouse and The Country Mouse," and then write a fable of their own.

Type: Lesson Plan

Motivating Students to Write for an Authentic Audience:

In this lesson, students will brainstorm survival tips for future fourth graders and incorporate these tips into a "how-to" essay. Students will use an online tool for creating an outline, and a graphic organizer and proofreading checklist are also included to help students edit their writing. A rubric is provided in this resource.

Type: Lesson Plan

Aesop's Fable "The Lost Wig":

This close reading lesson on Aesop's Fable "The Lost Wig" will introduce students to Socratic Seminar. Students will have the opportunity to share their thoughts and opinions in an open discussion, as well as hear the thoughts and opinions of their peers. Students will work together in cooperative pairs to determine the theme and moral of "The Lost Wig." They will also have the opportunity to change the ending of "The Lost Wig" and create a new moral.

Type: Lesson Plan

Close Reading of Bud, Not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis:

In this lesson, students will work with their teacher and classmates to practice a close reading of the book Bud,Not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis. All of the supplemental resources needed in order to execute this lesson are included. Students will encounter multiple reading opportunities and be asked to analyze text, identify story elements, examine characters' actions and motivations, and finally, make inferences after closely reading the text.

Type: Lesson Plan

Close Reading of the Folk Tale "The Little Red Hen":

This lesson will provide an in-depth look at a classic folk tale, "The Little Red Hen." By the completion of the lesson, students will have analyzed the key characters. They will also have written a new version of the folk tale based on the things they learned about the characters and that puts a twist on the original version.

Type: Lesson Plan

Civil Rights for All: Women and the Fight for Voting Rights:

In this lesson, students will learn about the history of the women's suffrage movement and what it took for women in America to get the right to vote. Throughout the lesson, the teacher and students will look at primary sources such as pictures and original documents, as well as videos about the movement and a PowerPoint to help build students' background knowledge. Then students and the teacher will work through a Reader's Theatre script called "Failure is Impossible" that describes the evolution of the Women's Suffrage Movement. Text-dependent questions for the script have been included. At the end of the lesson, students will work in groups to complete a timeline (an answer key is included) and then individually write an opinion piece on this topic. A rubric is provided to help teachers assess students' writing.

Type: Lesson Plan

Order Please!:

In this lesson, students will have an opportunity to learn about time transition words and use these transition words in their writing.

Type: Lesson Plan

Lead Me Into Exciting Writing!:

In this lesson students will learn how to create "leads" for narrative writing using fairy tales as the springboard.

Type: Lesson Plan

Everglades Adventure:

Students will learn about text features, note taking, and informational writing using a series of short videos about the Everglades. As a final product, students will practice their expository writing by creating an informational brochure about the Everglades.

Type: Lesson Plan

Snapshot Sleuths:

Students will learn how to analyze primary documents and discover facets of Native American life by analyzing images of a variety of Native American villages. After careful analysis, students will write an expository paragraph based on a text-dependent question.

Type: Lesson Plan

Party Planners Wanted:

In this MEA, students will work in collaborative groups to solve multistep problems with whole numbers and decimals by using different mathematical operations such as addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. The students will be asked to assist a businessman who is planning a party for his employees. They will need to read several ads and decide which company offers the best deal in renting tables, chairs, and tablecloths for the client. They will need to take into consideration the amount of guests attending the party and the budget allowed. A twist is added to the problem when the students are asked to consider an additional ad and the fact that the guest list is now slightly larger.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

The Furniture Movers!:

The main problem students will encounter in this MEA is determining the appropriate placement of required furniture in a classroom with a new school that is being constructed. The MEA provides students the opportunity to use their knowledge of Measurement and Geometry in order to work as an engineer in solving a realistic problem. The students will need to review and incorporate the usage of Mathematical formulas and sketching in order to help make their final determination to the client within the MEA. The students may need to reconsider their initial thinking once they encounter a problem with the specifications.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Using Varied Transitions:

In this beginning lesson on using transition word and phrases, students will explore the use of varied transitions in a published book and then include varied transitions within their own short narrative writing piece.

Type: Lesson Plan

Yards to Yards:

In this MEA, students will work in collaborative groups to solve multistep word problems posed with whole numbers. The students will be asked to assist a landscaping company in deciding which hedges will be the best to use in replacing the existing hedges which are currently not thriving due to insect infestation. They will need to take into consideration factors such as height, cold, drought tolerance, price, and the client's comments. A twist is added to the problem when students are asked to consider if it would be a good idea to treat the existing hedge instead of replacing it.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Shall We Rescue the Amazon?:

In this lesson, students will learn how humans are impacting the environment by reading various informational texts on the topic of saving the rain forests. Students will determine the meanings of unknown content-specific words and identify the main idea and supporting details within the text. They will write a summary of the text and respond to a prompt by writing an opinion essay.

Type: Lesson Plan

Party Planners:

The client is going to have a party and is in need of tables for a certain number of guests. The team needs to use a variety of tables that will fit the number of guests that are attending the party. The students will understand area and perimeter through this activity.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Power of Perception!:

During the lesson, students will listen to the story, The Frog Prince, in order to understand that someone may be wonderful on the inside even if they don't look quite as handsome or beautiful on the outside. The students are set to the task of writing a persuasive essay using critical and creative thinking as well as practicing the skills of peer editing. The students will have an opportunity to share their persuasive writings with classmates.

Type: Lesson Plan

Loaning Out Laptops:

This engaging MEA introduces students to a company named "Loaning Out Laptops" that needs their help in choosing the best laptops for students to do their schoolwork.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

The Chocolate Miracle:

In this lesson, students will learn about the Berlin Airlift following World War II and then read a story, Mercedes and the Chocolate Pilot (850L) by Patricia A. Pierce. Students will then create a narrative story in which the students will write as a pilot, dispersing their favorite candy or gum over a different town or country. Students will utilize a story elements graphic organizer, peer editing checklist, and a narrative rubric to assist them in the writing process.

Type: Lesson Plan

Differentiating Instruction: Finding the Main Idea and Supporting Details in Informational Texts:

This lesson is meant to be done in small groups at the students' individual reading levels. Students will read an informational text, will identify the main idea and supporting details, and record their findings on a graphic organizer. They will use the informational text and their graphic organizer to create a summary based on the text. The students will also answer questions based on the text. As a summative assessment for the lesson, the students will repeat this activity using a different informational text and will conduct the work alone, rather than in a group.

Type: Lesson Plan

Happy Healthy School Lunch:

In this MEA students are asked by the school cafeteria manager to assist her in creating healthier school lunch menus. The students need to keep in mind both nutritional and cost guidelines. Students will develop a procedure to select school lunches.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Protecting the Dream:

Students in the MEA will work together in teams to determine a procedure for selecting a company from which to purchase a set of protective gear for skating. Students will make using their problem solving skills to make decisions based on a table that includes companies, price per set, durability, comfort.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Transportation Choices:

In this MEA, students will determine which mode of transportation is best for a traveling sports team. They will have to decide between cost, time to travel, and comfort of travel. In the "twist," students are provided with more information including customer service rating of transportation as well as additional choices. Additionally, students will need to calculate the cost of the team's travel if they want the team to have a chance to win a drawing.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Let's Make a Movie:

Students will add and subtract multi-digit whole numbers (through the millions) to compare and contrast movie genres.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Buy a house:

Students will be given specifications (specs) about a house and have to determine which house would be the best one for the client according to the families needs.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Walk This Way:

Students will be asked to rank the different floor tiles for the playrooms in activity centers throughout community parks. They will need to take certain factors into consideration when making their rankings. They will also need to calculate the costs of installing the floor tiles using the given measurement of the playroom and the floor tiles. The "twist" will be that the client now needs to include a storage room for some of the playroom's equipment. They will need to decide if to use the same floor tile or different from the playroom and the additional cost of the storage closet. After, they will add the total costs of the playroom and the storage closet. They will report their findings and reasons by writing letters to the client.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

All-Star Track Runners:

Students will help a track coach determine which shoe is the best to purchase for his team. Students will be required to convert measurements initially and then rank the shoes from best to worst based on the data provided.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Fish Ahoy Fish:

Students will work in groups to assist a client in purchasing different fish for a fish pond. From a data table, they will need to decide which type of fish and how many fish to purchase according to the size of the each pond. After, they will need to revisit a revised data table to make different selection of fish and calculate costs for the purchase of the fish.

Type: Lesson Plan

Amazing Alice Cookies:

Students will help Amazing Alice Cookies choose the perfect chocolate chip brand to use for their cookies. Students will be given data in the form of fractions and decimals. Fourth grade students will compare decimals and order and compare fractions. Students will write a letter describing their procedure to the client.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Travels and More MEA:

In this Model Eliciting Activity (MEA), students will be need to help a travel agent come up with the best vacation hotel package for a family of four. They need to take into consideration all the amenities, prices, perks, and reviews into consideration. A twist comes in when the travel agent will need to provide vacation hotel packages for families of 5 members.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Parks and Playgrounds:

The Park by the Bay is having its grand opening soon and your students are needed to help figure out what playground equipment to use. 4th grade students will look at a data set and make decisions as to how to rank the playground equipment. Also, students will practice their area and perimeter skills by calculating the area and perimeters for the different playground equipment.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Strategically Structured (Text Structures):

Strategically Structured presents the five text structures to fourth grade students (description, sequence, compare/contrast, cause/effect, and problem/solution). Students are able to identify key words that categorize each text structure, create their own graphic organizers and pieces of writing for each text structure, and identify examples and non-examples of each text structure. Students will be engaged with interactive technology throughout this lesson and will get plenty of opportunities to write their own non-fiction pieces using the different text structures. Fourth grade science and social studies content are presented in the text structure scenario examples.

Type: Lesson Plan

Cookies and Treats:

Fourth graders will help Cookies and Treats find cost-effective and eco-friendly packaging for its cookies. Students will organize data and compare prices using decimal notation in order to develop a procedure for choosing packaging for cookies.  Students will use multiplication and division of whole numbers to plan for how many packages to order.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Dramatic Food Chains:

This fun lesson gives students the chance to "act out" food chains. By really putting themselves into food chains, students will better understand the transfer of energy through the food chain, as well as understand that the sun is the primary source of energy in a food chain. This lesson ends with students constructing their own food chains, and writing an explanatory paragraph to explain the flow of energy through the food chain they constructed.

Type: Lesson Plan

Hold the Phone...Creative Drama!:

This lesson introduces students to an exciting, creative, and engaging way to understand story structure and story features by allowing the students to write and act out a play. Students make selections from a provided list featuring various settings, characters, and problems and build their creative plays using a ready-made story feature template. Working cooperatively, the students craft a short, creative play using characters, setting, problem, four major events, and a conclusion. Students use their mind, bodies, and voices to create a play from the opening scenes to the closing scenes. Students present their plays to their fellow classmates while being supported, instructed, and encouraged by the teacher. A rubric is provided to help teachers effectively assess the students.

Type: Lesson Plan

Banana County Public School-Painters MEA:

This Model Eliciting Activity (MEA) is written at a 4th grade level.

This activity allows students to think critically using information provided. Students will write a procedure on how they determined which painting company would be suitable for the client.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

The Heart of a Lion:

In this lesson, the students delve into the world of main characters. Students hear familiar and funny dialogue from the lion in The Wizard of Oz in a video clip to gain their initial attention. Additionally, the students begin to develop a deeper understanding of main characters as the class delineates minor characters from major characters and further investigates protagonist and antagonistic characters. In the final assessment, students will develop characters from picture form to written form to build understanding and deeper meaning of characters. Students will draw a storyboard that allows for five to six pictures of a main character with an accompanying storyline that is organized with a clear beginning, middle, and end.

Type: Lesson Plan

CIS Wind at Work:

This lesson is using complex text to teach "close reading" strategies using the Comprehension Instructional Sequence Method (CIS). It includes a lesson plan, a National Geographic article, and a summative assessment rubric. CIS is a detailed instructional method that should be used by those who have been trained in this strategy.

Type: Lesson Plan

"The Day Jimmy's Boa Ate the Wash"; Using Text Structure to formulate a Narrative:

In this lesson, students will create their own original narrative using the text structure (cause/effect) that author Trinka Hakes Nobles uses in the book The Day Jimmy's Boa Ate the Wash. The students are expected to use strong verbs and descriptive adjectives to strengthen their writing. Students will use Microsoft Word to publish their writing and share with the class. This lesson uses the gradual release model so students will receive practice at writing the narrative with teacher support as a whole class and with teacher support in small groups before writing a narrative on their own.

Type: Lesson Plan

Close Reading Exemplar: "The Making of a Scientist":

The goal of this two to three day exemplar is to give students the opportunity to use the reading and writing habits they've been practicing on a regular basis to absorb deep lessons from Richard Feynman's recollections of interactions with his father. By reading and rereading the passage closely, and focusing their reading through a series of questions and discussion about the text, students will identify how and why Feynman started to look at the world through the eyes of a scientist. When combined with writing about the passage, students will discover how much they can learn from a memoir.

Type: Lesson Plan

EXplode A Moment - Using Sensory Details in Writing to Zoom in on a Short Period of Time:

Exploding a moment is magnifying an event much like a film maker does when he zooms in on the action using slow motion. Through the use of mentor texts and video, students will become familiar with this skill and use it to improve their writing.

Type: Lesson Plan

From Bland to GRAND-- Writing Power Sentences:

Students will participate in various activities to increase their use of effective word choice. They will use concrete words, phrases and sensory details to convey experiences and events with precise word choice.

Type: Lesson Plan

Light It Up:

In this MEA, students will work in collaborative groups to solve real-world, multi-step problems with whole numbers and decimals by using different mathematical operations such as addition, subtraction, multiplication and/or division. The students will be asked to assist a business/property owner in purchasing holiday lights for his property. They will need to read several ads and decide which product would be the best for the property. They will be provided with an office plan to calculate the perimeter of the building to then calculate how many holiday lights will need to be purchased and its total cost for each. They also need to take into consideration the owner's primary concerns. In the twist, the owner finds different holiday lights made from another material.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

New Coat of Paint:

In this MEA, students will work in collaborative groups to solve multistep problems with whole numbers and decimals by using different mathematical operations such as addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. The students will be asked to assist a property owner, who is planning to repair his new property, in purchasing the right exterior paint. They will need to read a data table, rank the paints from highest to lowest, calculate the amount of gallons needed according to the surface area, and the total cost of each paint. A twist is added to the problem when one of the paints is not available but two others are added, and also the owner wants to paint the dividing walls outside.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Party Entertainment:

In this MEA, students will decide which entertainer an owner of an entertainment company should hire. They will base their decisions on information provided on resumes. Students will calculate the cost of hiring the entertainer (multiplication of whole numbers) as well as compare the statistics of their talent competitions and attendance turn-out (comparing fractions). Students will write letters to the owner of the entertainment company ranking the entertainers and providing explanation and justification of their strategy for doing so.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

What's your Resource: Renewable or Nonrenewable?:

Students will learn about renewable and nonrenewable resources and share their ideas by writing an expository paragraph.

Type: Lesson Plan

Teaching Ideas

Faces of the Depression:

In this teaching idea, fifth grade students learn about the Great Depression, conduct research, and read the historical fiction novel, Esperanza Rising. After conducting interviews, students write 3rd person narratives and draw portraits of the locals who lived through that time period. This project was conducted in a Senior Center in Massachusetts and can easily be translated to a classroom in Florida.

Type: Teaching Idea

What Matters to Me: In the Hearts and Minds of Elementary School Students:

This teaching idea describes a project fourth graders participated in after studying American immigration. Students wrote essays about what was important to them and created expressive self-portraits.

Type: Teaching Idea

Leaving Traces:

This teaching idea describes a fourth grade project students participated in after studying early man. Students created a magazine which included photos, drawings, text and graphics of what they researched and learned.

Type: Teaching Idea

Comics in the Classroom as an Introduction to Narrative Structure:

In this lesson, students will use a comic-strip format for pre-writing to reinforce plot structure and create their own personal narratives. Students will learn to differentiate between random or background events and events that are significant to the plot of the story. Handouts and a virtual manipulative are included in this lesson.

Type: Teaching Idea

Comparison of Utah and Cultures of Various People:

Students will discover similarities and differences in the lifestyles and geography of their home state and another culture of various peoples.This lesson idea is specifically designed for students in Utah, but could be easily adapted for other states.

Type: Teaching Idea

Fourth Grade Writing Lesson #1/ Narrative Prompt:

Students will produce a narrative about a personal experience, with a focus on the trait of organization. The text should have an inviting introduction and satisfying conclusion.

Type: Teaching Idea

Text Resources

Green Invaders!:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. This National Geographic Kids article explains how the invasion of non-native plants is threatening native food webs.

Type: Text Resource

Metamorphosis:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. This article describes the complete and incomplete metamorphosis stages.

Type: Text Resource

Weathering:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. This article describes chemical, biological and mechanical weathering and includes causes and examples for each.

Type: Text Resource

Another Link in the Food Chain:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The article describes how energy passes through food chains. Examples of each link in the chain and a description of its role in the food chain are given.

Type: Text Resource

Student Resources

Vetted resources students can use to learn the concepts and skills in this topic.

Parent Resources

Vetted resources caregivers can use to help students learn the concepts and skills in this topic.