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Common Core State Standards
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Classroom Picks . . . Informational Texts!

Jump in the pool this summer and into reading with these books that make learning fun!

This Month's Picks

by Gail Gibbons
Gail Gibbons, Illustrator

Grades: SECOND

K-3: RI.2, 6, 7

1. What is the main purpose of this book? What does author Gail Gibbons want to answer, describe and explain? Use evidence from the book. RI.2-3.1, 2, 6

2. Design a vegetable seed package. Write directions on "how to plant a garden" for the back of the seed package. RI.2-3.3 / W.2-3.2

3. In small groups, draw on personal experiences and conduct short research to identify vegetables that have the same shapes, sizes and colors. Categorize these on paper plates by drawing and labeling. Present your findings. RI.2-3.1, 5, 8 / SL.2-3.1, 4 / W.2-3.6, 7, 8

4. Compare and contrast the structure, ideas, topics, illustrations and vocabulary from Gail Gibbons's books THE VEGETABLES WE EAT and THE FRUITS WE EAT. W.2-3.2, 7, 8

Who knew there were so many different kinds of vegetables?

Glossy red peppers; lush, leafy greens; plump, orange pumpkins; and delectable little peas: Vegetables come in many shapes, colors, and forms. Using her signature combination of a clear, informative text and plenty of illustrations, diagrams, and cross sections, Gail Gibbons provides a wealth of information about produce.

"A clear, informative introduction to eight groups of vegetables. . . . A simple, effective approach to the topic."—School Library Journal


Download the FRUITS WE EAT / VEGETABLES WE EAT Combo Guide featuring questions for classroom discussion aligned with CCSS and activity sheets for both books.

The Fruits We Eat
by Gail Gibbons
Gail Gibbons, Illustrator

Grades: SECOND

L.2.3, 4, 4a, 4c, 4e, 5, 5a, 5b, 6
RF.2.3, 3d, 3f, 4, 4a,4 c
SL.2.1, 1a-c, 4, 6
W.2.1-3, 5, 7, 8

1. How does author Gail Gibbons use text features in THE FRUITS WE EAT? Find an example of how text features from the book enhance your understanding of a concept or idea. RI.2-3.5

2. Plan a menu for a well-balanced meal using "MyPlate." Write about each food and tell why you chose it. Explain why your plate is well-balanced. W.2-3.5, 8

3. What are the names of large industrial fruit farms that grow strawberries, cranberries, grapes, apples and oranges? Research the climate for each farm. W.2-3.8 / RL.2-3.1

4. What is a perennial? Annual? Find fruits from the text and create a perennial/annual chart. L.2-3.5, 5a

Berries, apples, melons, and grapes; oranges, grapefruits, bananas—yum! This scrumptious picture book, a companion to The Vegetables We Eat, offers youngsters an inviting, information-packed cornucopia of favorite fruits.

An NSTA-CBC Outstanding Science Trade Book for Students K-12


Gail Gibbons combines a clear, simple text with her signature paneled illustrations to present fruit facts galore: the parts of fruits, where and how they grow, harvesting, processing, where to buy them, and how to enjoy them as part of a healthy diet. Once again, Gibbons proves "a master at creating factual books through which young readers can explore details of nature at an accessible and engaging depth."—Booklist

"A charming addition to nutrition and food units."—School Library Journal

Prices! Prices! Prices!
Why They Go Up and Down
by David A. Adler
Edward Miller, Illustrator

Grades: THIRD

RI.3.1-5, 7-10
L.3.3, 3b, 4, 4a, 4d, 5, 5b, 6
RF.3.3, 3c, 3d, 4, 4a, 4c
SL.3.1, 1a-d, 2-4, 6
W.3.2-4, 7, 8, 10

1. What is the main idea of PRICES! PRICES! PRICES!? Explain how author David A. Adler uses details to support the main idea. RI.2-3.1, 2

2. Explain the cause-and-effect relationships of supply and demand in your own words. RI.2-3.3

3. Research advertisements using newspapers, the internet and flyers. Cut out one example for each of the four laws of supply and demand. Create a poster and present the information. RI.2-3.3 / W.2-3.7, 8 / SL.2-3.4

4. Explain how specific images contribute to clarifying information in the book. RI.2-3.7 / SL.2-3.1

This entertaining introduction to economics will promote financial literacy.

Sometimes prices go up and up and up. Then they suddenly crash. Why? In simple language and with colorful graphics and amusing characters, this picture book explains the basic laws of supply and demand, using examples kids will understand, such as dueling lemonade stands on the same block. Terms such as "fixed costs" and "variable costs" are clearly explained, and a glossary as well as a helpful graphic summary are included.


"In Adler's capable hands, there is life in economics yet. Adler always finds a canny way into the math game, both practical and enjoyable."—Kirkus Reviews

Simple Machines
Wheels, Levers, and Pulleys
by David A. Adler
Anna Raff, Illustrator

Grades: FIRST

RI.2.1-4, 6-10
L.2.3, 4, 4a-c, 4e, 5, 5a, 5b, 6
RF.2.3, 3d, 3f, 4, 4a, 4c
SL.2.1, 1a-c, 2-4, 6
W.2.2, 3, 5, 7 ,8

1. Find the bold new vocabulary words in SIMPLE MACHINES. (wedge, inclined plane, ramp, lever, friction, wheel and axel, shaft, gear) RI.2-3.5

2. Find examples in the book of how author David A. Adler explains the meaning of new words using pictures and words. RI.2-3.4,7

3. How do simple machines simplify your life? RI.2-3.1, 2, 3 / W.2-3.2

4. In small groups, find real-world examples of wedge, inclined plane, ramp, lever, friction, wheel and axel, shaft, and gear that are not mentioned in the book. Provide reasons and evidence. W.2-3.7, 8

This lively introduction to physics will get kids excited about how simple machines simplify our lives.

Kids use simple machines every day without realizing it. Teeth are wedges and so are knives, forks, and thumbtacks. Many toys such as slides, which are inclined planes, and seesaws, which are levers, are also simple machines. Two appealing kids and their comical cat introduce levers, wheels, pulleys, inclined plains, and more, and explain how they work.


"Children will be drawn to the depictions of the machines in familiar situations such as turning on a water faucet or playing on a seesaw. The charming illustrations, featuring children, adults, and even a cat, enhance the impact of the message by depicting a small community going about their lives and using simple machines to make work easier."—Booklist