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        Reading Charts and Tables – Garden Spiders

        After watching a video about garden spiders, students will read a chart that reflects the information in the segment. They will then answer a series of questions using the information from the chart. 

        Lesson Summary


        After watching a video segment about garden spiders students read a chart that reflects information about the spiders in the segment and answer a series of questions using the chart.

        Why is this an important concept?

        It is important for students to learn how to read information in formats other than narrative texts. Learning to read charts and tables is another way for students to understand how information is collected and organized. It also helps students become skilled in gathering information quickly as well as categorizing information to develop their own charts and tables in a variety of subject areas.

        Grade Level:


        Suggested Time

        (1)50-minute period

        Media Resources


        The Lesson

        Part I: Learning Activity

        1. Before beginning the lesson you may want to review the following vocabulary words that will be mentioned in the video segment and used in the handouts.

        Vocabulary: predator, silk, venom, gossamer, diversity, prey, subdue, fearsome, timid, venomous

        2. Provide an example of a chart or table. Tell students that charts and tables are ways that a great deal of information can be gathered and organized into a small space.

        3. Next, tell students they are going to watch a video segment about several varieties of spiders found in a garden. Ask students to listen to the information in the segment and to remember the names and some characteristics of as many spiders as they can. Play the segment.

        4. Ask students to name the different spiders and characteristics mentioned in the segment. Distribute the Spiders in the Garden Chart .

        5. Tell students that charts can sometimes organize more information than we can remember. Ask students to identify the three columns that organize the information. Then carefully review the information in each column of the chart with students, and ask appropriate questions. Confirm what students remember from the video segment with what is written on the chart.

        6. Next, distribute the Reading the Spider Chart Handout and a separate piece of paper (if necessary) to each student. Tell students they will use the Spiders in the Garden Chart to help answer the questions.

        For Students Who Need Additional Help:

        • In a small group, review each column of the Spiders in the Garden Chart. Ask students to review the three categories for which the information is organized:
          • How does it behave?
          • What does it look like?
          • What is its special characteristic?
        • Next, ask students appropriate questions in each category.
        • Complete The Reading the Spider Chart handout together.

        Part II: Assessment

        1. Review the Spider Chart Rubric with students. Collect completed Reading the Spider Chart Questions handouts, and use the rubric to assess students’ understanding.

        2. The Reading Spider Chart Questions handout can be placed in a student’s portfolio to show understanding and proficiency.


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