ALEX Lesson Plan


Tops & Bottoms by Janet Stevens

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  This lesson provided by:  
Author:Deborah Murner
System: Lawrence County
School: Lawrence County Board Of Education
  General Lesson Information  
Lesson Plan ID: 4955


Tops & Bottoms by Janet Stevens


Students will read and discuss Janet Stevens' book, Tops & Bottoms, and use it as a stepping stone to understanding character analysis, sequence of events, and main ideas and supporting details.

 Associated Standards and Objectives 
Content Standard(s):
SC (2)
5. Identify the relationship of structure to function in plants, including roots, stems, leaves, and flowers.
ELA2015 (2)
9. By the end of the year, read and comprehend literature, including stories and poetry, in the Grades 2-3 text complexity band proficiently, with scaffolding as needed at the high end of the range. [RL.2.10]
ELA2015 (2)
21. Read with sufficient accuracy and fluency to support comprehension. [RF.2.4]
a. Read on-level text with purpose and understanding. [RF.2.4a]
b. Read on-level text orally with accuracy, appropriate rate, and expression on successive readings. [RF.2.4b]
c. Use context to confirm or self-correct word recognition and understanding, rereading as necessary. [RF.2.4c]
SC2015 (2)
7. Obtain information from literature and other media to illustrate that there are many different kinds of living things and that they exist in different places on land and in water (e.g., woodland, tundra, desert, rainforest, ocean, river).

Local/National Standards:


Primary Learning Objective(s):

Students will word-map a story, compare traits of characters in a story, and sequence the events of a story.

Additional Learning Objective(s):

Students will identify plants that grow above and below the ground and parts of plants that are used for food.

 Preparation Information 

Total Duration:

31 to 60 Minutes

Materials and Resources:

The book, Tops & Bottoms, by Janet Stevens; potatoes and peanuts on vines, heads of lettuce and cabbage, and corn on a stalk; Think-sheets from Makes Sense Strategies CD, Guided Reading Strategies: Sequence (3 event), Comparisons (similarities and differences), and Story Grammar (see attachments)

Technology Resources Needed:



Gather vegetables, check out book and preread, and duplicate Think-sheets.

1.)Students will read and discuss the book, Tops & Bottoms.

2.)Students will complete the guided reading Think-sheet (see SG4 attachment) that gives story title, characters, and main ideas of the book.

3.)Teacher and students will complete the guided reading comparisons Think-sheet (see SD2x3 attachment) on the overhead to illustrate the similarities and differences between Rabbit and Bear.

4.)Students will complete a modified version of the guided reading sequence Think-Sheet (see 3MIseq attachment) by dictating short descriptions of the various events of the story and essential details to the teacher, who will write them on sentence strips. Students will then order the sentence strips in the correct sequence to represent the unfolding of events in the story and match essential details to the events.

5.)Students will look at the plants the teacher has displayed, discuss the various parts of plants, how they grow, and which parts are used for food.

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Assessment Strategies

Teacher will check the Think-sheets for accuracy. Teacher will observe students' knowledge of the details of the story as they compare characters and dictate descriptions of the events of the story.


In a related science lesson, students could draw the plants that the teacher has brought for display and label the parts (stems, leaves, roots, and seeds).



Each area below is a direct link to general teaching strategies/classroom accommodations for students with identified learning and/or behavior problems such as: reading or math performance below grade level; test or classroom assignments/quizzes at a failing level; failure to complete assignments independently; difficulty with short-term memory, abstract concepts, staying on task, or following directions; poor peer interaction or temper tantrums, and other learning or behavior problems.

Presentation of Material Environment
Time Demands Materials
Attention Using Groups and Peers
Assisting the Reluctant Starter Dealing with Inappropriate Behavior
Be sure to check the student's IEP for specific accommodations.