Sunday, September 9, 2012

Create a class inspired Important Book!

 Hello there! I hope everyone has survived the week! Before I begin, I must say welcome and thank you to all of our new followers! We are more than thrilled to have reached the triple digits!! Thank you for taking time out of your day to read our little ol' blog.

Today I'm going to share with you a fun back-to-school writing activity, however, for those of you that are about to click out of our blog because you started school three weeks ago- stay here! This activity can be easily adapted for other things! 

Have you ever read The Important Book by Margaret Wise Brown? If not, I encourage you to add it to your library. For today's activity, I start off by reading this book to my students. Then, I read them a book I wrote called, The Important Thing About 3rd Grade. Unfortunately, I don't have a copy of it to share with you guys today. 
Later, I tell my students that they're going to be learning the important things about a friend from the class. I break the students into pairs and hand them this "Getting to Know You" sheet. The students spread apart throughout the classroom and take turns interviewing each other. They love it!

 Once the interviewing process is complete, the kiddos head back to their seats and I teach them how to make a person book. I am NOT the creator of this book. I learned how to make it from a colleague my first year of teaching and do not know the original source. 

 Teaching the students how to fold the paper in order to make a person book is a great informal assessment. It really shows me who is able to listen and follow directions! After they make their person book, the students use the information from their interview to write a paragraph about their new friend. Their paragraph should include information that they learned from the interview. 

 For the final sentence, "But the MOST important thing about _____ is..." I have the students write something nice about their new friend. The paragraph is another great informal assessment for the beginning of the year. 

When the paragraph is complete, it's time for the fun part- decorating their person book. The person they are creating, however, is not themselves- it is the friend they interviewed. I had a lot of left over scrapbook paper that was donated for a past project, so I let my students decorate their person book using scrapbook paper, construction paper, markers, crayons, etc. For the head of the person book, I have the students glue a picture of their friends' face. You can always just have your students draw the face if you want. 

When the person book is complete, they glue their paragraph to the middle. 

 Now, if you've already started school awhile ago and don't need to do any more "getting to know you" activities, you can still make a person book for other purposes. Students can write The Important Thing about a character from a book they're reading or perhaps they can write about a historical figure. The possibilities are endless! I like having my students create these books because they are a nice, quiet activity for them to be doing while I'm pulling kids to complete running records and other assessments. 

You can download this all for FREE by clicking here


  1. Adorable! I love that book, and this is a great way to build community.

    Second Grade Sparkle

  2. I LOVE that book and use it with a writer's workshop activity I found at Fultz's Corner. I love your ideas for using it at the beginning of the year. Thanks for sharing!

    Have a great week!



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