Grade 4
Unit: Book Clubs
Purposes: discussion skills, reading for enjoyment
Essential Questions: How does sharing interpretations and opinions influence our thinking?

Description: In this unit, students will participate in book clubs made up of grade 4 students from 3 different classrooms. The focus will be on learning how to independently have an effective discussion about books. Students will learn strategies for discussions and strategies for planning how many pages to read.
A variety of activities will help students prepare for their books clubs. Students will apply the reading strategies and skills learned up until this point in the year as they make meaning of texts through writing and discussion. As a culminating project, students will create a Voki Book Hook. Vokibookhooks.pdf

Desired Results

Common Core State Standards

Speaking and Listening
1. Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacherled) with diverse partners on grade 4 topics and texts, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly.
a. Come to discussions prepared, having read or studied required material; explicitly draw on that preparation and other information known about the topic to explore ideas under
b. Follow agreed-upon rules for discussions and carry out assigned roles.
c. Pose and respond to specific questions to clarify or follow up on information, and make comments that contribute to the discussion and link to the remarks of others.
d. Review the key ideas expressed and explain their own ideas and understanding in light of the discussion.

5. Add audio recordings and visual displays to presentations when appropriate to enhance the development of main ideas or themes.

10. By the end of the year, read and comprehend literature, including stories, dramas, and poetry, in the grades 4–5 text complexity band proficiently, with scaffolding as needed at the high end of the range.

National Educational Technology Standards (NETS)
2. Communication and Collaboration
Students use digital media and environments to communicate and work collaboratively, including at a distance, to support individual learning and contribute to the learning of others.
3. Research and Information Fluency
Students apply digital tools to gather, evaluate, and use information
5. Digital Citizenship
Students understand human, cultural, and societal issues related to technology and practice legal and ethical behavior.

CT Grade Level Expectations

Elicit, discuss and respect the opinions of others about written, oral and visual texts.
Share opinions and judgments based on texts.
Explain the appeal of a text.
Pose questions, listen to the ideas of others, and contribute own information and ideas in group discussions.
Use volume, pitch, phrasing, pace, modulation and gestures to enhance meaning.

NETS for Students
Creativity and Innovation
Students demonstrate creative thinking, construct knowledge, and develop innovative products and processes using technology. Students:
a. apply existing knowledge to generate new ideas, products, or processes.
b. create original works as a means of personal or group expression.

Connecticut Mastery Test Objectives
All of the Reading Strands
Essential Questions
-Our own interpretations and opinions grow and change as we listen to others.
How does sharing interpretations and opinions influence our thinking?


The student will know...

The students will be able to...
group discussion skills
elicit, discuss and respect the opinions of others
share opinions and judgments based on texts
explain appeal of a text
pose questions in a group
listen to the ideas of others in a group
contribute own information and ideas in a group

Content Vocabulary

Assessment Evidence
Performance Tasks

Video of Discussion Self Reflection

Voki Book Hooks
Formative Assessments
Reading Response Journals
Student reflections
Observations of Groups
Common Formative Assessment

Summative Assessments


Student Self-Assessments
Reflections on discussions
Self assessment of video

Learning Plan

SEM-R Bookmarks
Eye to Eye, Knee to Knee
Literature Circle Minilessons
Multiple copies of texts (Kate, 5th grade, book closet, classrooms)
iPods and books on CD

Anchor Activities
What Makes a Good Discussion? Students watch a book discussion in action and take notice of
what makes the discussion work. The notes are shared and used to create a Discussion Tips chart.
Discussion Videos
Kate and 8th grade students
Book Selections After hearing book talks and watching book trailers, students make their three choices for a book.
Book Trailers
Our Hopes and Goals Students meet with their group for the first meeting and share their hopes for the book talks. Together, they write down those hopes on their book club poster. They read for 30 minutes, get together and decide how many pages their goal should be.
Book Club Meeting 1.doc
Prepare for Book Talks Students will meet to discuss every 2-3 days in their groups. On alternate days, they will prepare for the book talk by reading the agreed upon pages and completing a response.
visualize prompt.doc
Book Discussions Book talk discussions will be guided by a variety of strategies, such as pick a question from a list of open-ended questions, write questions before the book talk, use question stems to come up with own questions, etc.
[[file/view/generic questions for discussion.doc|generic questions for discussion.doc]]
Book Talk Debrief and Reflections Reflecting on individual and group behaviors are a critical part of book talks. Students will reflect in a variety of ways, written, oral, peer feedback
Book Club Reflection.doc
Book Character Voki Students will work cooperatively and write a script for a book hook. They will record the script on and iPod and upload it to a Voki character.