This is my first year using the Lucy Calkins reading workshop. We just finished up the Grade 4 Fiction unit. This unit uses The Tiger Rising as a mentor text. It is truly a beautiful book and many of my students were able to relate to it!
The book talks a lot about Rob’s Suitcase. This “suitcase” is where he keeps all of his “not-thoughts”. This can be a hard concept for students to grasp. To make it a little bit easier, I found an old suitcase at Value Village and as we read the book together, we filled it with all of Rob’s not thoughts. This helped students to understand that Rob’s suitcase is a metaphor. They were also able to look back at the suitcase to find evidence to support their opinions about Rob as a character. This was especially important because Characterization is the focus of this unit!