Learning Activities

This section of the Design Lab houses more than 200 activities strategically selected to support young people in learning key skills. Most of the activities can be used in classrooms across multiple content areas (including math!). The Learning Strategy Buttons and Search Filters will provide you with many different ways to explore the collection, allowing you to quickly identify activities for specific instructional plans.

Predicting

Predicting is one of the first strategies that students learn as they read fictional texts. The ability to make predictions helps readers make connections texts, deepening their understanding as they search for clues about what might come next. Making predictions with nonfiction texts is considerably more challenging, largely because background knowledge provides the context for predictions. Students with significant gaps in content knowledge will tend to struggle with predictions in the sciences, history and social sciences. The activities collected here provide a way to introduce students to predicting.

Lesson Plan Stages

Common Core Instructional Shifts

Content Areas

Learning Strands

Skills

Showing 12 of 36 results:

Anticipation Guide

  • Building Background
  • Launching Into New Content
  • Reflection
Anticipation guides consist of statements about themes from a text and ask students to evaluate their own thoughts about those themes. Anticipation guides help students build background when they think about...

Cause-and-Effect Train

  • Building Background
  • Investigation
  • Launching Into New Content
  • Reflection
  • Synthesis
For this activity, students create a visual representation of the cause-and-effect relationships among events. This activity is useful any time you want your students to understand the complex...

Character Quotations

  • Investigation
  • Launching Into New Content
The character quotations activity helps prepare students to read a novel or historical text by building prior knowledge of key figures in the text. Students examine quotations from the key characters, and...

Coding the Text

  • Investigation
  • Launching Into New Content
This activity provides an organized and time-sensitive way for students to respond in multiple ways to a text as they are reading. By using a pre-established “code,” students indicate a variety of responses...

Double-Entry Prediction Chart

  • Building Background
  • Investigation
A double-entry prediction chart asks students to select passages from the text and make predictions about characters or events. Students will then explain the thinking behind their predictions using text...

Finish Me Stories

  • Investigation
  • Synthesis
In this prediction activity students will use information from a partially written story as the foundation for the continuation of the story. Students will complete the story by first planning out a sequence...

First Lines

  • Launching Into New Content
First Lines is a pre-reading activity that promotes comprehension by helping students to anticipate a text based on its opening. It helps students to become more adept at framing a text efficiently, and to...

Fishbowl

  • Investigation
  • Reflection
  • Synthesis
Through this activity pairs of students engage in a brief discussion while the rest of the class observes and learns from the discussion. It can help students to promote a collaborative environment, to discuss...

Guided Peer Questions

  • Investigation
This group questioning activity helps students to learn effectively from a teacher presentation or a text. When engaged in Guided Peer Questioning, students are able to process, clarify, and extend the content...

Guided Self-Questioning

  • Investigation
This individual questioning activity helps students to learn effectively from a teacher presentation or a text. When engaged in Guided Self-Questioning, students are able to process, clarify, and extend the...

Heading Guiding Questions

  • Investigation
This activity helps students to use a text feature of many textbooks and other nonfiction texts to aid comprehension. Students identify headings and subheadings, and convert each into a guiding question that...

Interpreting Visual Aids

  • Building Background
  • Investigation
  • Launching Into New Content
This activity is designed to help students to recognize and strategically use the visual aids present in most textbooks and many articles in subjects such as math, science, history, social science, and art...

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