Students read texts focused on what it means to be a good friend, and examine key details about characters through discussion and writing, helping to facilitate building friendships in the classroom.
As part of the upgrade to Fishtank Plus, this unit was revised in October 2020. See which texts and materials have changed as part of the revision in this guide to our 1st Grade text adjustments.
In this unit, students read a collection of texts focused on building an understanding of what it means to be a good friend. This unit, in connection with beginning of the year culture-building activities, will set a strong foundation for building social-emotional awareness within students as they navigate making new friendships within the classroom. This unit will also serve as the launch unit of the year-long theme, what it means to be a good person within a community. Over the course of the year, students will deepen their understanding of what it means to be a good person and grow up in different communities, part of which involves being a good friend.
This unit will serve as the foundational unit for creating a strong Read Aloud and discussion culture. Building on what students learned in Kindergarten, students will practice asking and answering questions about key details, particularly characters, in partners, individually, and through discussion. Students will also learn and practice strong habits of discussion, particularly structures for Turn and Talks, tracking, voice, and focused bodies. Additionally, students will be challenged to think about characters, what they are like as a person and what they learn in the story by noticing the details an author includes in the words and the pictures.
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Book: The Day You Begin by by Jacqueline Woodson and illustrated by Rafael López (Nancy Paulsen Books, 2018) — AD980L
Book: Howard B. Wigglebottom Learns to Listen by Howard Binkow (Lerner Publishing Group, 2006) — AD460L
Book: The Invisible Boy by Trudy Ludwig (Knopf Books for Young Readers, 2013) — 680L
Book: Matthew and Tilly by Rebecca C. Jones (Puffin Books, Reprint edition, 1995) — 570L
Book: Stand Tall, Molly Lou Melon by Patty Lovell (P. Putnam's Sons, 1st edition, 2001) — 560L
Book: Ruby the Copycat by Peggy Rathmann (Scholastic, 52850th edition, 2006)
Book: Enemy Pie by Derek Munson (Chronicle Books, 736th edition, 2000) — 550L
Book: The Sandwich Swap by Queen Rania Al Abdullah and Kelly DiPucchio (Disney-Hyperion, 2010) — 570L
Book: The Name Jar by Yangsook Choi (Dragonfly Books, 2003) — AD590L
Book: Jamaica and Brianna by Juanita Havill (HMH Books for Young Readers, 1996) — 470L
Book: Big Al by Andrew Clements (Atheneum Books for Young Readers, Reprint edition, 1997) — 740L
Book: Each Kindness by Jacqueline Woodson (Nancy Paulsen Books, 2012) — 530L
This assessment accompanies this unit and should be given on the suggested assessment day or after completing the unit.
ashamed brave clever copycat coincidence enemy fierce foolish invisible influence insults include jealous judge kindness lonely misunderstood proud satisfied
To see all the vocabulary for this course, view our 1st Grade Vocabulary Glossary.
Being a good friend means:
Stand Tall, Molly Lou Melon
Describe why Molly Lou Melon acts the way she does.
Describe how you are unique and how that helps strong friendships and teams.
Ruby the Copycat
Describe how Ruby’s feelings changed by asking and answering questions about character feelings.
Make connections to what it means to be a good friend and part of a strong team.
The Invisible Boy
Explain why the author ends the text by saying “Maybe, just maybe, Brian’s not so invisible after all” by asking and answering questions about character feelings and motivation.
The Sandwich Swap
Describe how the main characters change by asking and answering questions about character motivation.
Jamaica and Brianna
Explain what Jamaica and Brianna learn by asking and answering questions about character motivations and feelings.
Describe how the narrator’s relationship with Jeremy Ross changes by asking and answering questions about character feelings.
Describe how Big Al’s relationship with the other fish changes by asking and answering questions about character motivation.
Matthew and Tilly
Explain what Matthew and Tilly realize and why by asking and answering questions about character motivations, feelings, and actions.
Explain what Chloe learns and how she learns it by Close Reading a text.
All unit texts
Write an opinion piece about what makes a good friend.