5 November Library Lessons for Elementary
Need a variety of November library lessons for kindergarten through fifth grade? I’ve got you! These five resources are bundled together to help YOU relax and celebrate the Thanksgiving month with a focus on fun games, intriguing research, a little laughter, and an attitude of gratitude!
The lessons were created over several years, and their themes are based on my desire to enjoy my FAVORITE holiday month! When those busy days in late November approach, it can get so stressful — and I needed rock-solid lessons to engage and motivate my library students. At the same time, I wanted FUN lessons that my students and I could explore and enjoy together — while waiting for our Thanksgiving break days to arrive! 🙂 So, here’s a run-down of what I created.
The November Bundle includes Five Resources:
– What’s Cooking for Thanksgiving?
(This is a 3-in-1 lesson!)
#1 It starts with a mini lesson on diverse ways that we celebrate Thanksgiving.
#2 This leads to a mini-lesson on how rhyming words work… which…
#3 Segues into a fun singing/guessing game about Thanksgiving dinner! (Depending on how long your library classes last — you could easily make this resource last all month! NOTE: The song goes to the tune of “For He’s a Jolly Good Fellow.” Be sure to hold out the last “Thanksgivviiiiinnnnggggg”for maximum fun! 😉
– Thanksgiving Riddles – and The Science of Laughter
(Again — it’s a 3-in-1! You can stretch this one out for weeks!)
#1 I use the “Science of Laughter” slides as a way to explain WHY we do research in the first place! (To find the answers to our personal questions! There’s more about this in the file.) The AMAZING color photos for this mini-lesson were hand-picked to spark interest and a sense of fun! Some of them are a hoot! (Expect laughter!) Then again, for those of us that take the teaching part of our jobs pretty seriously — there’s a nice-and-tidy, little assessment quiz for the older kids to work on during book exchange. Check!
#2 Next up, you’ll get to pick and choose from 19 very funny titles as you introduce the humor genre and to share some booktalks. You’ll choose from a selection of picture books, chapter books, volumes of poetry, — even jokes and riddles! Scripts for my booktalk choices are included. (And don’t worry — I’ve included blank slides for you, too, in case you have different books in your collection that you want to highlight!)
#3 Finally — we’ve made it to the riddle slides! YAY! One slide asks the riddle… and the next reveals the answer — then repeat — 15 times! I love to save this part of the overall lesson for the week right before Thanksgiving! I tell my kids that they need to remember at least two or three riddles, so they can make their grandparents and cousins laugh at the Thanksgiving dinner table! (I always tease a bit and tell them that they’ll get “Bonus Points,” if anyone laughs so hard that milk squirts out of his or her nose! We even stop and practice “riddle-telling techniques” on each other!) It is so much fun! (DISCLAIMER: I had a class or two of kinders who did not get my riddles. If your kinders are on the younger side… you may need to teach them what makes a riddle funny… and go slow until they “get it!” Once they figure it out, the giggles are glorious!)
– SCOOT CARDS – Story comprehension based on the picture book — The Very Stuffed Turkey by Katharine Kenah
I adore SCOOT games, and my classes love them, too because they can get up and move around the library! (My instructions and some management tips are included.) Of course, you could also use the SCOOT cards in a center (like task cards). I’ve also used these with my younger students by projecting the slides and leading a whole group discussion. HINT: This is a GREAT lesson to leave for a sub, if you have a November emergency!
– Inquiry Process and Problem-Solving — A Big6 Thanksgiving Story
This is an original story that I made up for my students about problem-solving (and to help meet the inquiry standards in my state.) The premise is that this boy’s mom finds out that she has to go in to work on Thanksgiving morning — and they’ve already invited a bunch of their family members to eat dinner at noon! (These folks are already traveling as we speak!) So, being the nice kid that he is — he agrees to pitch in and help. Luckily, Big6 helps him figure out what to do.
I wrote a slide-by-slide script to help you with the storytelling. WARNING: Leave time for lots of discussion — especially with your older kids! During this lesson, I always hear lots of opinions about what THEY would do to handle the situation, if placed in this poor kid’s shoes! (Which is actually a PERFECT response for learning about Big6! I like to have my students pair up and share their thoughts as we move through the slides — so it always takes me two weeks to finish the story.)
– Research/Discussion about What Makes Community Helpers Thankful
This resource has several parts as well. It was inspired by Eileen Spinelli and her picture book called “Thankful.” (She graciously gave me her permission!) I created the components to work with my young students AND my upper grades, too.
There are four main goals to reach:
— How to research a community helper using Pebble Go or an EPIC e-book.
— How to share an opinion based on facts (introduce the word “evidence.”)
— How to participate in a small group, or whole class discussion, effectively.
— Develop a sense of gratitude for the tools, vehicles, machines, other people, or circumstances that community helpers need each day in order to get their tasks completed.
In the resource, I’ve included many practical tools that my kids needed to reach these goals. These include keyword cards (to help kids spell the career names when doing a search) and scaffolding cards about what makes an effective speaker and an active listener (to help kids know what to say when sharing their research findings/listening to others present).
I’ve also included different research organizers for both non-readers and older elementary students. (There are organizers for using Pebble Go OR EPIC as well.)
Then… there is a set of slides to help you teach what’s on the scaffolding cards. These slides lead into the research-sharing-discussion part smoothly. I wanted the kids to understand what to do — and my behavior expectations, too.
Last of all, I’ve included a culminating “thank you” song, which includes some American Sign Language, for my littles. There’s also an extensive EPIC e-book list and a Pebble Go article list by careers.
Whew! That is IT. See? With this bundle of resources, you’ll have November covered for sure! Please take a peek at my preview to see even more details. And, as always, email me before or after your purchase, if you have a question.