Top Critical Reading Lessons of 2019-20: Pet Themes

Two things are always in short supply for teachers: their time and their budget. Therefore, XTRA Weekly was created as a time-saving, budget-friendly solution that teaches students critical reading of a newspaper article, engages readers in higher-order thinking, and provides step-by-step directions for the instructor to deliver the lesson plan. An annual subscription includes 32 weeks with two lessons per week to keep students busy learning new skills the entire school year. Teachers love that they are easy to download and share, include a guided lesson plan, and use recent stories from newspapers to keep students engaged.

BENEFITS OF OUR 5-WEEK SERIES

To help educators explore better solutions for teaching critical reading skills, we’ve created a five-week series to highlight our favorite lessons from the 2019-20 school year. Best of all, access to these sample lessons are free! In this fifth of five articles, we’ve provided examples of lessons with pet themes engage students by teaching about fun and interesting stories about the furry friends in our lives!

The key benefits of investing time to review our lessons include:

  • Discovering a time-saving weekly guided lesson plan that you can subscribe to next school year.
  • Learning how XTRA Weekly is aligned to Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts.
  • Examining how this ELA resource will help with teaching critical reading, writing, and thinking.
  • Sampling how you can enhance students’ knowledge of current events on a weekly basis.

Our 5-week series will feature the following themes:

  1. FOOD (published 7/6/20) – Includes the articles “How to Carve a Spooky Pineapple Jack-O-Lantern”, “5 of the Least Healthy Holiday Dishes”, and “Quinn on Nutrition: An Apple a Day”
  2. HEALTH (published 7/18/20) – Includes the articles “Mayo Clinic Minute: Why scary movies make your heart race”, “Does the coronavirus have you worried about toilet paper?”, and “Tired of self-isolating? Astronauts are used to it.”
  3. HOME (published 8/2/20) – Includes the articles “Study: A lot of good food goes into the fridge to die”, “Stuck at home? Now is the perfect time to learn the language of birds”, and “Ask Mr. Dad: When Enough is Too Much”
  4. SCIENCE (published 8/13/20) – Includes the articles “These students are learning how to fly drones — and they’re only in middle school”, “The dirtiest things you touch”, and “NC man sets his 7th Guiness World Record. This one took giant soap bubbles.”
  5. PETS (this post, published 9/1/20) – Includes the articles “Joan Morris: Should we let our pets lick us on the lips”, “Florida man and his dogs visited 25 nursing homes in cross-country trek for pet therapy cause”, and “You got your flu shot; You also should protect your dogs with the canine flu vaccine”

HOW XTRA WEEKLY WORKS

  • Start a subscription to access a new issue each week during the school year, which contains two weekly lessons.
  • Download the weekly issue via the Internet with 24/7 accessibility.
  • Each lesson contains a current Newspaper Article, brief For the Instructor lesson plan, Questions and Extension Activities for the student, and Answer Key for the teacher.
  • Choose an integrated curriculum geared for your students in either Grades 3-5 (Level 1) or 6-8 (Level 2), or use both levels.
  • Share each lesson with your students, which uses current nonfiction articles from national newspapers to engage students in reading, writing, and critical thinking.
  • Repeat the process weekly during each school year — you’ll get 32 lessons (actually, 64 lessons since each lesson contains both Level 1 and 2 activities).

Now, let’s get started exploring some pet-related lessons that we created for students and educators during the 2019-20 school year involving pets licking our lips, a man trekking to provide pet therapy in 25 nursing homes, and whether to protect dogs with a flu shot.

PET THEME: SAMPLE A

“Joan Morris: Should we let our pets lick us on the lips” (Level 1, Lesson 28 — 2019-20)

kissing dog

Click to view the NEWSPAPER ARTICLE Click to view FOR THE INSTRUCTOR Click to view the QUESTIONS Click to view the ANSWERS Click to view the EXTENSION ACTIVITIES

 

PET THEME: SAMPLE B

“Florida man and his dogs visited 25 nursing homes in cross-country trek for pet therapy cause” (Level 2, Lesson 14 — 2019-20)

dog at nursing home

Click to view the NEWSPAPER ARTICLE Click to view FOR THE INSTRUCTOR Click to view the QUESTIONS Click to view the ANSWERS Click to view the EXTENSION ACTIVITIES

 

PET THEME: SAMPLE C

“You got your flu shot; You also should protect your dogs with the canine flu vaccine” (Level 2, Lesson 9 — 2019-20)

dog flu shot

Click to view the NEWSPAPER ARTICLE Click to view the FOR THE INSTRUCTOR Click to view the QUESTIONS Click to view the ANSWERS Click to view the EXTENSION ACTIVITIES

NEXT STEPS

Now that you’ve discovered why educators love XTRA Weekly, here are the next steps:

  • Join our mailing list to be notified when the subscription for the 2020-21 school year is available for purchase (Annual cost: $500 per school for all teachers or $200 per individual teacher)
  • For the 2020-21 school year, Lesson 1 (Levels 1 and 2) will be published September 14. You’ll be notified at a later date on how to login to XTRAWeekly.com to access the weekly lessons.
Click to JOIN OUR MAILING LIST

 

 

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