A Halloween Shared Reading Lesson

My Ghost
by Lyndsey Jarman

I needed a costume
on Halloween night.
A scary, new costume
that would be a fright.
I found an old tablecloth
all clean and white.
I cut out two eyes,
big, round, and just right!
I put my sheet on
I knew just what to do.
I found all my friends and shouted out

Critical Reading Lesson

Read through the poem once for enjoyment and then tell the children Today we are going to practice doing something that good readers can do. It is called visualizing. Visualizing means creating a picture of what is being read inside of your head. It is like turning on a TV inside of your brain that creates pictures of what your are reading.

We are going to read this poem again. The child in the poem is making a costume for Halloween. I want all of you to close your eyes this time as I read the story and turn on your brain TVs. As I read to you what the child is doing, I want you to imagine a picture of it in your brain. At the end of the poem, I want you to imagine what the child looks like in the costume he or she made.

Read the poem to the students once more. After reading, think aloud about some of the elements of the poem. This time while I was reading the poem I noticed some of the details about what the child was doing. I noticed that he or she started with a sheet out of which he or she cut two big eyes. I wonder what a sheet with two eyes cut out would look like? I wonder what the child in the story is going to be? I also am paying close attention to the fact that the child said, “boo” after he or she put the costume on. I think that is a big clue. Who made a picture in their mind of what this child looks like all dressed up for Halloween?

Ask a few children to draw a picture of the child in costume. Encourage the children to do their best, but emphasize that individual differences are great because everyone makes different pictures when they visualize. Do not draw a picture yourself because children may consider this the correct answer and attempt to copy it.

Now give each child a white piece of construction paper, art materials, and a kleenex. Instruct them to make a picture of a child on their paper. Next, using scissors, have the children cut kleenex to show how the child cut out the sheet, glue it on top of their drawing, and then write “boo” on the paper.