TEL Lesson Plan
What to read, why to read?

Grade Level: 3-5
Subject: Language Arts/ Reading
Time Frame: 1-2 hours


Students will use TEL databases to search for book reviews and will discuss the usefulness of book reviews.

Databases/Other Resources

Kids InfoBits



Steps for Teacher

Steps for Librarian


Steps for Student

1. Go to Kids InfoBits.

2. Select Keyword Search.

3. In the search box, type Book Reviews.

4. The results page lists “Subjects containing the words: book reviews”  (if you accidentally search “book review” without the "s," the database will return a list of “subjects containing the words book”).

5. Click throught the “View” button for the results list.

6. Scroll down the results page and select an article from Child Life, Boy’s Life, Stone Soup, or another children’s magazine.

7. Read a book review and discuss its characteristics: an interesting opening, photos from the book, a summary of the book, and a recommendation at the end.

8. Read a few book reviews and discuss which books sound interesting. Did the review make you want to read the book?


Related Activities

1. Read a book described in the book reviews you found.

2. Write a book review for a book you have recently read. 

3. Locate and read a book that was reviewed elsewhere. 

4. Form a book club to read and discuss books.  As a group, write a book review and send it to the local or school newspaper. 

5. Advanced students may want to experiment with the “advanced search” option. By searching “book reviews” as subject/name and a second subject/name search term, the results list can be narrowed to book reviews with the subject “baseball,” “dinosaurs,” or other topics of interest.  The teacher may want to create a list of subjects in advance for students to select from to avoid “no hits found.”



Content Standards

English Language Arts - Grades 3-5

Standard 8 - Literature


Content Area Reading 3081

Standard: The student will develop the reading skills necessary for word recognition, comprehension, interpretation, analysis, and evaluation of print and non-print text.

Learning Expectations/Grade Level Expectations

Standard 8 - Literature

Grade Level Expectations:

GLE 0301.8.1 Use active comprehension strategies before, during, and after reading.

GLE 0301.8.2 Experience various literary genres.


Content Area Reading 3081

Learning Expectations:

The student will use interactive strategies to derive meaning from text.

The student will use appropriate strategies to respond to text.

Performance Indicators State

Standard 8 - Literature

Performance Indicators:

SPI 0301.8.3 Identify forms of text as poems, plays, or stories.


Checks for Understanding: Standard 8 - Literature

0301.8.1 Develop and use pre-reading strategies (e.g., identify a purpose for reading {for information, for enjoyment, for understanding a writer’s position}, make predictions using text features {illustrations, graphics},

0301.8.7 Read and review various literary genres (e.g., short stories, fairy tales, folktales, poetry, plays, and nonfiction).

0301.8.15 Participate in literature discussions (e.g., book talks, literature circles, writing, oral presentations).


Content Area Reading:

ISTE Computer Literacy and Usage Standards

3. Research and Information Fluency

3b. Locate, organize, analyze, evaluate, synthesize, and ethically use information from a variety of sources  and media.
3c. Evaluate and select information sources and digital tools based on the appropriateness to specific tasks.
3d. Process data and report results.

4. Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making

4c. Collect and analyze data to identify solutions and/or make informed decisions. 

AASL Standards for the 21st Century Learner

1. Inquire, think critically, and gain knowledge.

1.1.4 Find, evaluate, and select appropriate sources to answer questions.

2. Pursue personal and aesthetic growth.

4.1.1 Read, view, and listen for pleasure and personal growth.