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  • ELA Module - Grade 1: A Tree is a Plant

ELA Module - Grade 1: A Tree is a Plant | Rating (star)(star)(star)(star)

Clyde Robert Bulla
New York: Harper Collins, 2001

This assessment module is a performance activity to assess how well students can examine complex text and then demonstrate their understanding through writing.

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CORE Assessment Module

Module Overview

 

Purpose and Usage:

This assessment module is a performance activity to assess how well students can examine complex text and then demonstrate their understanding through writing. All modules were developed by practitioners for practitioners. Since the reading expectations are rigorous, some might find the text selections challenging. Please note, however, that the text exemplars that are used as the basis for each module are taken directly from Appendix B of the Common Core State Standards for targeted grades.

The expectations of the CCSS call on teachers to instruct around complex text so students read closely to accomplish essential skills, such as make inferences, determine themes, and analyze development of ideas. They do so using textual evidence from a targeted complex text. Much like teachers engage students in the writing process to create optimal written products, teachers would likewise plan and conduct a series of comprehensive lessons to help students meet these rigorous reading standards.  These lessons would align to specific reading standards, include a myriad of instructional strategies and formative assessments (e.g., read silently, discuss, listen to, take notes, engage in discussion with peers, write informally and formally, etc.), and center on text-dependent activities and tasks to illicit deep understanding of targeted texts. This assessment module does not replace a formalized series of lessons around complex text as just described, but rather provides a “dipstick” to get a sense of how well students read complex text independently and proficiently. The results are meant to inform teachers about future instruction.

Teachers should use their professional judgment and their district’s recommended guidelines to administer this module as a pre-assessment or formative assessment in order to gather information about a student’s ability to read complex text carefully and construct an organized writing piece that is grounded in evidence from the text. Some teachers might decide to use two modules – one as a preassessment and another as a formative assessment to check for understanding during the formalized instructional process around complex text.

We encourage teachers to administer this assessment with colleagues and discuss results together to ascertain next steps in an instructional plan. Teachers can employ additional instructional strategies beyond what is included in this module when administering the assessment. However, discuss with colleagues which ones you choose to use so you are conducting this assessment under similar conditions.

 

Scoring:

At this time, use the Smarter Balance rubrics available at this link: http://www.smarterbalanced.org/wordpress/wpcontent/uploads/2012/05/TaskItemSpecifications/EnglishLanguageArtsLiteracy/ELARubrics.pdf .

Smarter Balanced does not have a rubric for each grade for all three writing types; however, later, a more detailed rubric for all grades and types will be considered.

Content Area

English Language Arts/Science

Text

A Tree Is a Plant by Claude Robert Bulla (excerpt)

Grade Level

Grade 1

Target Area

Text-Dependent Questions, Performance Writing Task ( Informative/Explanatory)

ELA Common Core State Standards

RI.1.1 Ask and answer questions about key details in a text.

RI.1.2 Identify the main topic and retell key details of a text.

RI.1.6 Distinguish between information provided by pictures or other illustrations and information by the words in a text.

RI.1.7 Use the illustrations and details in a text to describe its key ideas.

W.1.2 Write informative/explanatory texts in which they name a topic, supply some facts about the topic, and provide some sense of closure.

*SL.1.1 Participate in collaborative conversations with diverse partners about grade 1 topics and texts with peers and adults in small and larger groups.

*SL.1.2    Ask and answer questions about key details in a text read aloud or information presented orally or through other media.

SL.1.4 Describe people, places, things, and events with relevant details, expressing ideas and feelings clearly.

*SL.1.5 Add drawings or other visual displays to descriptions when appropriate to clarify ideas, thoughts, and feelings.

L.1.2 Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English capitalization, punctuation, and spelling when writing.

SBAC Assessment Claims

Claim 1 : Students can read closely and analytically to comprehend a range of increasingly complex literary and informational texts.

Claim 2 : Students can produce effective and well-grounded writing for a range of purposes and audiences.

Task Overview

This assessment task will be completed in three parts. The prewriting/planning in part one will involve reading, speaking and listening, and literature discussion. In part two, students will revisit the story, complete a graphic organizer, and write responses to text-dependent questions. In part three, students will draw and label the parts of an apple tree and write an informative/explanatory paragraph.

Module Components

1)      Directions to Teacher

2)      A Tree Is a Plant Text Passage

3)      Sketch Sheet

4)      Text-Dependent Questions and Peer Discussion

5)      Independent Writing Task

6)      Parts of a Tree Graphic Organizer (Optional Extended Activity)


*Standard addressed but not explicitly assessed.

 


A Tree Is a Plant

Directions to Teacher

 

This Common Core-aligned ELA Performance Task can be given over two to three days depending on class schedules. The directions below outline the steps to follow for a three-day administration. 

 

Text: Bulla, Clyde Robert. A Tree Is a Plant . Illustrated by Stacey Schuett. New York: Harper Collins, 2001. (1960)

 

Materials

  • A Tree Is a Plant Text Passage (Day 1)
  • A Tree Is a Plant Sketch Sheet (Day 1)
  • Visual Prompts for Literature Discussion (Day 1)
  • Text-Dependent Questions Graphic Organizer (Day 2)
  • A Tree Is a Plant Question List (Day 2)
  • Writing Task (Day 3)
  • Lined Paper
  • Parts of a Tree Graphic Organizer (Optional Extended Activity)

 

DAY 1

1.    Reading   (RI.1.7, SL.1.5, SL.1.5))

(Approximately 15 minutes)

Distribute the text passage A Tree Is a Plant and read it aloud to the students. Then have them engage with the text by working in partners to read sections of the text, sketch what is memorable, and share with their partners. Distribute the Tree Is a Plant Sketch Sheet for this exercise. If you have not used this strategy in the past, model for students how to sketch memorable points quickly from a text passage. Invite a few partners to share their sketches with the class.

2.    Model Responding to Text-Dependent Questions ( *SL.1.1, RI.1.1, RI.1.2, RI.1.6, RI.1.7)

(Approximately 15 minutes)

Model the process for how to respond to text-dependent questions using textual evidence. To do so, show the sheet Visual Prompts for Literature Discussion on a document camera, reproduced on chart paper, in a handout, on an interactive board, etc. Then lead a classroom discussion using some of the following questions. (Provide language frames if necessary.)

  • How does an apple seed grow into a tree?
  • What helps the seed to grow?
  • What keeps the tree alive in the winter time?
  • What are the parts of an apple tree?
  • What have you learned about apple trees?
  • Why are roots so important to a tree?
  • What is the main idea of the text?
  • What happens to an apple tree in each season of the year?

DAY 2

1.    Rereading

(Approximately 10 minutes)

Instruct students to reread A Tree Is a Plant passage independently. Review the symbolic summaries from the first day. Review the answers to the questions from the modeling exercise around text-dependent questions.

2.    Note-taking Around Text-Dependent Questions ( RI.1.1, RI.1.2, RI.1.6, RI.1.7)

(Approximately 20-30 minutes)

Make several class sets of the Text-Dependent Questions Graphic Organizer. E xplain to students that they will individually select questions to answer based on the text passage. Then they will complete the “My Responses” and “Evidence From the Text” sections only. Distribute and read the Tree Is a Plant Question List so they can choose their questions. Encourage students to expand their thinking beyond literal responses. Explain to students that they will select and respond to at least three questions. Therefore, distribute at least three graphic organizer sheets to each student.

3.    Speaking/Listening Exercise ( *SL.1.1, *SL.1.2, SL.1.4, RI.1.1, RI.1.2, RI.1.6, RI.1.7)

(Approximately 20 minutes)

In pairs or groups of three, give students time to discuss their responses to the questions on the graphic organizer along with textual evidence. After a designated period of time, instruct students to independently complete the “My Thoughts Now” section of the graphic organizer. Tell them they will respond to a writing prompt and can use this graphic organizer along with their sketches while writing.

DAY 3

Performance Task (Writing Prompt) (W.1.2, L.1.2)

(Approximately 20 minutes)

Distribute the writing prompt and lined paper. Let students know the amount of time they have to respond to it. Encourage students to use their sketches and graphic organizers that include responses to text-dependent questions to inform their writing.

 

EXTENDED LEARNING:  

  • As a class or on their own for homework, ask students to find the age of a tree They need to wrap a tape measure around a tree trunk about 3 feet up from the ground.  The distance that they are measuring is called the girth of the tree. Every inch in the girth equals about one year in a tree’s growth.   How old is your tree?   Is it younger or older than you are?   By how   many years?
  • Read the actual picture book A Tree Is a Plant. Using the information in the text, work with students to complete the graphic organizer Parts of a Tree.

 


A Tree Is a Plant Text Passage

A tree is a plant. A tree is the biggest plant that grows. Most kinds of trees grow from seeds the way most small plants do. There are many kinds of trees. Here are a few of them.

How many do you know?

This tree grows in the country. It might grow in your yard, too. Do you know what kind it is? This is an apple tree.

This apple tree came from a seed. The seed was small. It grew inside an apple. Have you ever seen an apple seed?

Ask an adult to help you cut an apple in two. The seeds are in the center. They look like this.

Most apple trees come from seeds that are planted. Sometimes an apple tree grows from a seed that falls to the ground. The wind blows leaves over the seed. The wind blows soil over the seed.

All winter the seed lies under the leaves and the soil. All winter the seed lies under the ice and snow and is pushed into the ground. Spring comes. Rain falls. The sun comes out and warms the earth. The seed begins to grow.

At first the young plant does not look like a tree. The tree is very small. It is only a stem with two leaves. It has no apples on it. A tree must grow up before it has apples on it. Each year the tree grows. It grows tall. In seven years it is so tall that you can stand under its branches. In the spring there are blossoms on the tree. Spring is apple-blossom time.

We cannot see the roots. They are under the ground. Some of the roots are large. Some of them are as small as hairs. The roots grow like branches under the ground. A tree could not live without roots.

Roots hold the trunk in the ground. Roots keep the tree from falling when the wind blows. Roots keep the rain from washing the tree out of the ground.

Roots do something more. They take water from the ground. They carry the water into the trunk of the tree. The trunk carries the water to the branches. The branches carry the water to the leaves.

Hundreds and hundreds of leaves grow on the branches. The leaves make food from water and air. They make food when the sun shines. The food goes into the branches. It goes into the trunk and roots. It goes to every part of the tree.

Fall comes and winter is near. The work of the leaves is over. The leaves turn yellow and brown. The leaves die and fall to the ground.

Now the tree is bare. All winter it looks dead. But the tree is not dead. Under its coat of bark, the tree is alive.

TEXT COPYRIGHT © 1981 BY CLYDE ROBERT BULLA. Used by permission of HarperCollins Publishers.


A Tree Is a Plant

Sketch Sheet

 

 

Text

Read one section of the text at a time.

Quick Sketch

What do you find memorable about this part of the story? Sketch it!

1

A tree is a plant. A tree is the biggest plant that grows. Most kinds of trees grow from seeds the way most small plants do. There are many kinds of trees. Here are a few of them.

How many do you know?

This tree grows in the country. It might grow in your yard, too. Do you know what kind it is? This is an apple tree.

This apple tree came from a seed. The seed was small. It grew inside an apple. Have you ever seen an apple seed?

Ask an adult to help you cut an apple in two. The seeds are in the center. They look like this.

 

2

Most apple trees come from seeds that are planted. Sometimes an apple tree grows from a seed that falls to the ground. The wind blows leaves over the seed. The wind blows soil over the seed.

All winter the seed lies under the leaves and the soil. All winter the seed lies under the ice and snow and is pushed into the ground. Spring comes. Rain falls. The sun comes out and warms the earth. The seed begins to grow.

At first the young plant does not look like a tree. The tree is very small. It is only a stem with two leaves. It has no apples on it. A tree must grow up before it has apples on it. Each year the tree grows. It grows tall. In seven years it is so tall that you can stand under its branches. In the spring there are blossoms on the tree. Spring is apple-blossom time.

 

3

We cannot see the roots. They are under the ground. Some of the roots are large. Some of them are as small as hairs. The roots grow like branches under the ground. A tree could not live without roots.

Roots hold the trunk in the ground. Roots keep the tree from falling when the wind blows. Roots keep the rain from washing the tree out of the ground.

Roots do something more. They take water from the ground. They carry the water into the trunk of the tree. The trunk carries the water to the branches. The branches carry the water to the leaves.

 

4

Hundreds and hundreds of leaves grow on the branches. The leaves make food from water and air. They make food when the sun shines. The food goes into the branches. It goes into the trunk and roots. It goes to every part of the tree.

Fall comes and winter is near. The work of the leaves is over. The leaves turn yellow and brown. The leaves die and fall to the ground.

Now the tree is bare. All winter it looks dead. But the tree is not dead. Under its coat of bark, the tree is alive.

 

 

TEXT COPYRIGHT © 1981 BY CLYDE ROBERT BULLA. Used by permission of HarperCollins Publishers.

Visual Prompts for Literature Discussion

 

QUESTION

 

MY THOUGHTS

 

EVIDENCE

 

MY THOUGHTS AFTER DISCUSSION

 

 


Text-Dependent Questions Graphic Organizer

Question

 

 

My Thoughts

Evidence From the Text

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Thoughts After Discussion

 

 

 

 

 


 

A Tree Is a Plant

Question List

 

Directions: Choose some of these questions to respond to on your graphic organizer.

 

  • How does an apple seed grow into a tree?
  • What helps the seed to grow?
  • What keeps the tree alive in the wintertime?
  • What are the parts of an apple tree?
  • What have you learned about apple trees?
  • Why are roots so important to a tree?
  • What is the main idea of the text?
  • What happens to an apple tree in each season of the year?

 

 

 

 


A Tree Is a Plant

Writing Task

 

 

Directions:

Please respond to the prompt below in writing. You may use your sketches and graphic organizers to help you. Write on the lined paper your teacher gives you.

 

Writing Prompt:

Draw an apple tree and label the parts. Then write a paragraph explaining what those parts are and how they help a tree grow.

 

Be Sure To:

  • State your topic.
  • Write facts and details about your topic from the text passage.
  • Give an ending sentence.
  • Use capital letters where you should.
  • Spell words correctly.
  • Use correct punctuation.

 


Parts of a Tree Graphic Organizer

Directions: Look back in the text at the pictures and words. Use those pictures and words to help you determine the parts of a tree and their functions. Draw and label the parts of the tree on the left and write their functions on the right. An example appears below.

 

Part of a Tree

What does it do? (Function)

Roots

 

 

1. Helps the tree stay in the ground

 

2.

 

3.

 

 

1.

 

2.

 

3.

 

 

1.

 

2.

 

3.

 

 

1.

 

2.

 

3.

 

 

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