This semester, all my students have been very excited about reading, so I’ve decided to introduce them to some classics from my childhood. In my first two classes, Clifford the Big Red Dog and Arthur the Aardvark were huge successes.
To begin, we watched the theme songs from the television shows to get an idea of what the stories are about and who the characters are. Then we took turns reading from the books. Neither of the classes are quite up to the level of English in which the books are written, so I rewrote everything for their level. In the case of Clifford, below, for my lowest class, I ended up writing them a completely new story.
For my middle class, we read a modified story about Arthur and D.W. learning to read, so the class could really empathize! To supplement the book, we performed a drama in pairs where one student played Arthur and one played D.W., and they had to run around the classroom reading words on the walls. The kids got really into finding the most difficult words on the walls and sounding them out.