One of the strong impulses of the Common Core Standards is the use of non-fiction reading. When I work with the fairy tales like the Three Bears – I think it is a wonderful opportunity to compare real bears vs. the three bears. We research bears by reading non-fiction books from the school library. This integrates science into the curriculum in such a powerful way.
We make two habitats: Real bears and The Three Bear's home out of paper bags
These sweet paper bag houses are from www.charlottesfancy.com.
Each child will make a Three Bear's house. To make the paper bag houses:
- Fill the lunch bags with newspaper.
- Fold down the top.
- Pick a scrapbook or construction paper for roof.
- Fold over top and staple.
- Cut out windows, doors and other details from various papers.
- Use markers and crayons to add features.
We discuss the life cycle of the brown bear and important facts. Again, to translate what we discuss and create – I provide a graph to document the children's understandings of fictional and real bears:
Another way of looking at the differences between real and fictional bears is with a sentence graph:
I like to put this on the smart board and fill it out with the class. I use these graphs all year long. ( I eventually have the children writing sentences from them in the second semester. ) I read each sentence out loud after we are done filling it out. “”Bears can hunt. Bears can climb.” etc.
Here is an example of one filled out:
I will fill the same graph out with the three bears to compare the differences.