Animals Nobody Loves Invade Book Talk Thursday




Students think the topic is the main idea, but there is a difference! Get down to the main idea with Animals Nobody Loves!

What?! Animals that nobody loves?! Are you kidding? I found this book in a class I had to take and instantly fell in love with it. It has such great information about why people don't like the animals in the book and amazing pictures, but I knew it would also be perfect for teaching main idea with my fifth graders. I used Animals Nobody Loves by Seymour Simon to help them see the difference between topic and main idea. {Affiliate links inserted to help fund book purchases for this blog.}

Book Summary

The book features animals that are feared for one reason or another by humans. Some animals (sharks, grizzlies, and king cobras) are truly to be feared, while others really should not be feared (spiders, bats, and vultures). The descriptions in the book tell why people are scared of them and what makes them so feared. The kids especially liked the pictures as they were close ups of the animals and the scary parts. What a fun book!

Classroom Application

Like I said before, I used the book Animals Nobody Loves to help my fifth grade students see the difference between a topic and a main idea. We said the topic of each page was written on it as the heading. We knew that the author was telling us about that particular animal, but we needed to get down to the main idea. 

We started with the Grizzly Bear. I read the passage to the students and told them to just listen the first time. We decided the main idea was "Grizzly bears are dangerous." I read it a second time and had students listen for details to back up our main idea. We listed those details on our tree map and then looked at them and the main idea. After some discussion, we changed the main idea to "Grizzly bears are feared by humans." because the details actually supported that main idea better.
Students think the topic is the main idea, but there is a difference! Get down to the main idea with Animals Nobody Loves!

I then read the part about sharks a couple of times. The students had to write down at least three facts to support their main idea. Then we came up with a good solid main idea that was supported by the details.
Students think the topic is the main idea, but there is a difference! Get down to the main idea with Animals Nobody Loves!

Students think the topic is the main idea, but there is a difference! Get down to the main idea with Animals Nobody Loves!

All in all, this lesson helped these fifth graders see how main ideas and details really do work together. Later today, they are going to do one completely on their own. Hopefully I can get back over here to post their own tree maps with main ideas and details. 

Next step will be writing a summary with the information!

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Students think the topic is the main idea, but there is a difference! Get down to the main idea with Animals Nobody Loves!


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