Last week I introduced my students to problem and solution in stories. I LOVE teaching problem and solution to my kiddos because it is something they can relate to. We ALL encounter problems in our lives that we must solve! I started off the lesson by showing this little Pixar video. These 5 minute Pixar clips make the best introductions/engagements. After watching it, we discussed what went wrong (the problem) and how the problem was solved (the solution).
Then, I modeled how to locate the problem and solution in the story, Owen, by Kevin Henkes. This book is a perfect read aloud for teaching problem/solution because young children can relate to Owen’s problem. After reading it, we revisited the text and determined what the problem was and how the problem was solved. We recorded our
observations on chart paper.
Then, in small groups, we read differentiated leveled-texts in order to locate the problem/solution. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE small group time because it allows me to hear from everyone, including the shy kids! I wish you all could have heard some of the incredible discussions these kids were having! Next week, we’ll be diving into more problem/solution activities. Now that we’ve had experience identifying problem/solutions in stories, we are ready to become problem detectives! Tomorrow, this sign will be posted next to our lunch sign-in sheet for all to see. It’ll definitely create a stir in the classroom!
Then, at Morning Meeting, we’ll read this exciting letter from The Problem Detective Club! The letter states that they are looking to add new members to join the team. Students will receive a TOP SECRET envelope with secretive “case files” inside. In small groups, they will read the case files in order to identify the problem and then come up with a possible solution. This is a wonderful team building activity! They’ll record their ideas and then ship them back tothe Problem Detective Headquarters for review.
This is what they’ll use to record their observations.
If the Problem Detectives approve of their observations, the class will receive a special certificate showing they are now members of the club! I always like to make a real-world connection to anything we learn so after my kiddos receive the certificates, I’ll ask them how they can be Problem Detectives in real life (at home and at school). We will brainstorm ideas on ways we can help others solve problems.
Throughout the week, we’ll continue learning about problem/solution through these fun extension activities. These short stories are PERFECT for small group discussions.
And, we’ll use these organizers to help us illustrate/write the problem and solution in other texts.
Lastly, we’ll play a fun matching game where students have to match up the problem with the solution.
You can find all of these resources in my We Are Problem Detectives packet at my shop! If you already own this packet, be sure to go re-download it to get the updates. Click on the preview below!
Also, I just recently added a packet of all of my reading strategy and skill posters to my shop. We refer to these ALL THE TIME. I call these our “What Makes a Good Reader?” posters. I used Velcro and attached these to the wall below the white board. Velco allows me to move these easily! I like to “frame” the strategy poster of the week. To do that, I made a simple frame made out of poster board and laminated it. Then, I “frame” the strategy/strategies of the week so that my students know what we are focusing on and can easily refer back to it. I’ll share more about that in a future post!
You can grab the posters at my shop. Just click on the preview below.