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Lesson Plan

Amelia Bedelia Up Close! Closely Reading a Classic Story

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Amelia Bedelia Up Close! Closely Reading a Classic Story

Grades 1 – 2
Lesson Plan Type Standard Lesson
Estimated Time Four 3045-minute sessions
Lesson Author

International Literacy Association



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From Theory to Practice



With the adoption of the Common Core State Standards and its emphasis on complex texts, students need opportunities to read closely and engage in deep thinking. After reading Amelia Bedelia by Peggy Parish, students discuss text-dependent questions to promote an understanding of the story's character. Through subsequent readings, they construct and support arguments concerning the character traits of Amelia Bedelia and use the text to determine how Amelia Bedelia and the Rogers can have different reactions to the same events. After these discussions, students demonstrate their understanding of character by completing a trading card for Amelia Bedelia.

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Trading Card Creator: When using this resource, students answer questions about a character in their text, allowing them to demonstrate their understanding of how the character develops throughout the story.

Amelia Bedelia by Peggy Parish: Amelia Bedelia is the focus text for this close reading due to its qualitative complexity, which is the result of its use of words with multiple meanings, requiring students to use their prior knowledge to understand the content.

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Fisher, D., Frey, N., & Lapp, D. (2012). Text complexity: Raising rigor in reading. Newark, DE: International Reading Association.

  • Texts can be deemed complex based on three measures: qualitative, quantitative, or the characteristics of the reader and purpose of the task.
  • Students should be provided with the opportunity to struggle with and succeed in reading complex texts.
  • As students gain experience with the close reading of complex texts, the materials they are able to read independently will also increase in complexity.
  • Text-dependent questions help students return to and focus on the text, making inferences and forming arguments concerning the author's purpose.

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Fisher, D., & Frey, N. (2012). Close reading in elementary schools.The Reading Teacher, 66(3), 179-188.

  • Through repeated reading, students are able to think critically about text.
  • Students need to know the purpose for reading, but the material and content should not be frontloaded, taking away the necessity to read.
  • For primary students, text can be read aloud during a close reading.

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