Explore lead sentences
- The author has used an unusual hook to start this piece. Instead of telling you what something IS [a light year] , he tells you what it IS NOT. Have a class dialogue after a think, pair share (TPS) to talk about how this approach affects the reader. Have students rewrite a piece from their own journals using this “negative” approach!
- Use this opportunity to start collecting lead sentences and paragraphs from different nonfiction informative texts.
- Notice how the author has taken an overwhelming concept and broken it down for easy understanding. Use this as a mentor text to have students write about other big concepts that need to be “chunked” to make them more understandable.
Explore the nature of speed.
- Brainstorm - what are the fastest things you can think of? Graph them.
- Now you can talk about scaling graphs, because this light year is going to be off the chart!
- Great anticipatory set for talk about measurement - the origin of different systems and the reasons they have developed the way they have. Ask kids to develop their own scale of measurement for something and prepare to be awed.
- This is a great time to reinforce the effects of adding zeros to numbers - the differences between millions, billions, trillions and beyond.
Explore our solar system...and beyond
- Use this article as a jumping off point to find other things in space that are closer than the closest star.
© Karen Sterling, 2017 - May be used for educational purposes without written permission