Fiction Frenzy!

We've been studying fiction this past week: the kinds of fiction and fiction story elements. We've also touched on the skill of retelling and will continue to practice and develop that next week. Retelling such an important comprehension skill!

I tried something different this year: I taught the kinds of fiction during my Read Aloud time, rather than taking time during my reading block. It was nice because we could do some learning in a causal, relaxed way. Here's the anchor chart we created:
My anchor charts aren't pretty works of art (a la Pinterest), but hey, they get the job done!

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These are the books I used to introduce each type of fiction:
Realistic Fiction: Up North at the Cabin. Not only is this book great for my Midwest friends, the word choice and envisioning are AMAZING!

Fantasy Fiction: Pumpkin Soup. If you follow my blog, you already know how I LOVE this book! Read all about it HERE!)

Mystery: Miss Nelson is Missing. No explanation needed :)

Science Fiction: Moo Cow Kaboom! This book is SO funny!

Historical Fiction: Encounter. Great connection with Columbus Day.

I taught the story elements during my Daily 5 minilessons. This week I introduced them, and we practiced identifying the elements orally. Next week I'm going to introduce the Writing station (no, I don't follow the Sisters' guide for setting up Daily 5), and the bunnies are going to be writing about story elements in their notebooks. Here's my Fiction Story Elements anchor chart:

After we learned about the fiction story elements, I introduced the comprehension skill, retelling. Retelling is so, so, SO important... it's the first question I always ask when doing running records! And it drives me nuts when the bunnies retell every.single.detail of the story! "and then..., and then..., and then...."One way we learn about retelling is with a Retelling Rope. Each student gets a "rope" (I just use yarn) with 7 knots. Each knot stands for a step in the retelling process:
knot 1: characters
knot 2: setting
knot 3: conflict or problem
knot 4: event 1
knot 5: event 2
knot 6: event 3
knot 7: solution
As they retell the story, students move their hand along the Retelling Rope. They keep the rope in their book box. It makes a great book mark too! Here's my anchor chart for retelling:

What tips and tricks do you use to teach retelling?


  1. Hey You!
    Thanks so much for visiting my blog and entering my giveaway!!!!! I'm so happy to be here...loving the title of your blog too!

    Crisscross Applesauce in First Grade

  2. Love Up North At the Cabin. GREAT book for all SORTS of lessons ( visualizing, word choice etc). Love the idea of the retelling rope. Very cool. Will have to try it. :)
    Diving Into 2nd Grade

  3. Like the anchor chart for retelling! I am your newest follower! I am a new 2nd grade blogger!
    Amy Howbert

    Little Miss Organized

  4. Completely love your retelling rope idea (and the anchor chart to go along with it!) Thanks for sharing! I'm totally "borrowing" this next school year. Thanks! :)

  5. I LOVE the retelling rope! Great idea that I will try! Your anchor charts look perfectly fine! :)


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