At the end of each school year, Scholastic does a sale and sells off extra copies of their magazines to make way for the new inventory. Having tried Super Science, we decided to order a few copies of Storyworks, which is Scholastic’s literary magazine for students in grades 3-6. Fiction, nonfiction, paired texts, drama, grammar, poetry and debate, this magazine is another awesome resource and one Elsa has requested I order for the coming school year.
Given it was an inventory sale, I wasn’t provided a teacher’s guide, which meant I had to create my own activities to coincide with magazine. With the school year winding down (30 more days but who is counting…), I wanted a simple activity, that would keep Elsa engaged in the articles and that wasn’t time consuming.
With this resource, the student logs the main idea, two supporting details, one interesting fact and lastly, an opinion or thought about the article. I especially like the opinion portion because it requires the child to question the text. For example, Elsa and I read the article A Roar in the Darkness which told the story of J.H. Patterson and his crew as they set about to build 600 miles of railroad through Kenya, all while being stalked at night by two starving lions. After reading, Elsa’s opinion was “the author didn’t need to include such scary details about the lion attacks.”
As for author’s purpose and text structure, I am currently working on a resource to synthesize this information, but until then, check out the links below and don’t forget to download my free graphic organizer.