The St. Therese 3rd Graders are comparing settings, characters and behavior traits of fiction and nonfiction series books.  With each book the class begins by bringing background knowledge of other texts or experiences to predict and understand the subject.  Building greater comprehension can easily be done by summarizing the similarities and differences of the story’s settings, characters and behavior traits.        

The students understood that a realist fiction book, such as The Big City, is based on a single topic, the city and what can be seen there.  Although the characters are cartoon images, the city scenes are real and can be seen in about any city throughout the world.  The pupils then read the fiction book The Trip from the Froggy and Friends Series. The students then contrasted the two stories on a Venn Diagram for the similarities and difference of types of vacations.

Before reading and while reading nonfiction texts, such as All About Snakes and All About Sharks the students are encouraged to pay close attention to Headings, Bolded Words, Captions, and the Fun Fact page at the back of the book.  Students discuss unique ways these animals live and survive in their own habitat.  They completed a short comparison chart that allowed them to report what they felt was the most important details.  The students used new information to compose a simple dictation paragraph on what was learned from fiction and nonfiction text to expand their comprehension.