Materials Needed- A granola bar and a candy bar; and/or a one dollar bill and a quarter, Venn Diagram worksheet
Compare and Contrast lesson plan activity time: 30-120 minutes, depending on use of optional reinforcement and advanced exercises. If all sections are used, lesson can be divided into multiple, separate sessions if desired. Objective of Compare and Contrast lesson plan: Help teachers achieve common core standards for comparing and contrasting, by teaching students how to compare and contrast different items, compare and contrast different books, and compare and contrast text within a book.
Using theses concept and applying them to writing pieces, can assist the writer in being able to add detail and comprehension. 4.2.1 Use of organization of information text to strengthen comprehension. 4.2.5 Compare and contrast information on the same topic after reading several passages or articles. 4.7.2 Summarize major ideas and supporting evidence presented in spoken presentations. 5.4.1, 6.4.1 Discuss ideas for writing, keep a list or notebook of ideas, and use graphic organizers to plan writing. 6.4.4 Use a variety of effective organizational patterns, including comparison and contrast, organization by categories, and arrangement by order of importance or climactic order.
Preparation for Compare and Contrast lesson: Make enough copies of the provided Compare and Contrast lesson plan Venn diagram and picture handouts for each student. On the top of your whiteboard/chalkboard, write “Chocolate Bar” on the left side, “Alike/Both/Same” in the middle, and “Granola Bar” on the right side. Introduction to Comparing and Contrasting
Explain that comparing and contrasting involves looking at things and figuring out how they are similar (alike) and how they are different. Have students split into groups: This class would have two groups of four and two groups of three. Allow students to pick their own groups unless this becomes an issue then pick student groups. Contrasting: Tell the students that when contrasting two things you focus on just the ways the two things are different. For example, when comparing a chocolate candy bar and a granola bar, you would ask, “How are chocolate candy bars and granola bars DIFFERENT? Now ask the student to suggest ways that the bars are different. Write their responses on the board, with those for the granola bar under “Differences” on the left side and those for the candy bar under “Differences” on the right side.
Explain again, that finding differences between two things, like the granola bar and candy bar, is contrasting. Comparing: Tell the students that when comparing two things you think of all the ways they are alike (Note: comparing can also be defined as looking at similarities). For example, when comparing a granola bar and a chocolate candy bar, you would ask, “Tell me about a chocolate candy bar and a granola bar and how they are alike?” Next, hold up both bars (If desired, you can pass out a candy bar and granola bar to each student), and then ask the student to suggest ways that the bars are similar. Write their responses on the middle of the board under the word “Alike”. Depending on the types of bars, their responses might include rectangular, edible, sweet, brown, etc. Explain again, that finding similarities between two things, like the granola bar and candy bar, is comparing.
Creating a Venn Diagram: Explain that sometimes it helps to see the similarities and differences between things by creating what is called a Venn diagram. Now draw a Venn diagram on the board by drawing a circle that encloses all words under “Alike” and all the words under the left side “Differences”. Draw a second circle that encloses all words under “Alike” and all the words under the right side “Differences”. Explain that where the circles overlap shows the items’ similarities, and where they don’t overlap shows the differences. Note: As desired, repeat or substitute the above exercise by using a dollar bill and a quarter using the Venn Diagram worksheet. Have student’s complete diagram on their own in their groups. Teacher and para will check groups for comprehension. Have the students share the differences and similarities that they listed. Discuss and make any needed additional explanations about comparing and contrasting to reinforce students’ understanding. Continue lesson with “Ask the Students” paper.
This continues the lesson to reading a compare and contrast called “Frogs and Toads”. Students read and fill out a different type of compare and contrast graphic organizer. Students will be given input to begin by doing one-two examples from reading and then allowing student to complete on their own. Students will share afterwards to check for student understanding. Students will write a paper about topics of their choice to compare and contrast.” The paper will be at least two paragraphs using comparing and contrasting and with the use of their graphic organizers for added planning. The students will fill out a graphic organizer on the topics of their choice. Each paragraph will consist of a topic sentence/introduction, three supporting sentences (details) in the body, and a conclusion. Students with teacher/para support will edit their writings and then will type them in the computer lab.
Compare and Contrast: Part Three and Four
Ask the Students: Students will still remain in their groups at this point. Materials:
Frogs and Toads handout, graphic organizers
What is the purpose of it?
To prove more information to the reader. For example: if I was going to write about frogs and toads on my own, the reader would not gain as much knowledge as if I read about frogs and toads and then wrote a compare/contrast paper on the topic. How many of you know a lot about high school? If I were to ask you to write a compare and contrast paper about middle school and high school, you would understand and have more knowledge about middle school. When you compare something unknown it is easier to have some knowledge for it makes it easier for us to understand and write a paper containing prior knowledge plus newly acquired knowledge. Have them read out loud “Frogs and Toads”. While you read, think about how this compare and contrast reading is written for you will be writing one similar.
After they read, ask them:
What did you notice about this?
1. The topic sentence/introduction lets the reader know what this paper is about. 2. It’s organized by topic. It’s not all similarities first and then differences next. 3. Signal words are in bold. These are words that let the reader know if things are similar or different. These are words that can be used instead of similar and different. 4. Make a list of signal words.
5. There isn’t an ending/conclusion. If you were to write an ending/conclusion, what would be a good one? Example: Next time you see a frog or toad, I hope you will be able to tell them apart. Ask: How would you plan to write a compare and contrast paper? What graphic organizer would you use? Show them the Venn diagram. Tell them that you could use this, but it is kind of difficult to get all the words in the circles. So instead, we will use the other graphic organizer. Explain that they are going to complete the graphic organizer on their topics for their paper. They will then write a compare and contrast paper. Students will need assistance with their topics. They will need to be cleared with the teacher.
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