Counting by 7’s Holly Sloan Goldberg novel study lessons, CLICK HERE on TpT.
Clipart from Queen’s Educational Resources HERE
Blog Introduction: Written by Newbery Honor-winning author Holly Goldberg Sloan, “Counting by 7’s” is an engaging and inspiring story about a young girl named Willow who is struggling to find her place in the world. It is the perfect book to help students connect with each other and have meaningful conversations about life, friendship, and identity. Here are some tips for teaching this novel in your classroom.
- Introduce the Characters: Before diving into the story, have your students create character sketches of Willow and her friends. These can be done on paper or digitally using tools such as Google Slides or Adobe Spark. Have them focus on both physical traits as well as personality traits that make each character unique. This will help them get to know the characters better and will also help them form more meaningful connections with the story later on.
- Discuss Themes: As you read through Counting by 7’s Holly Sloan Goldberg discuss major themes with your students such as strength in diversity, resilience, understanding others, and friendship. Ask your students questions about how these themes relate to their own lives and encourage them to think critically about how these themes could be applied to real-world scenarios.
- Get Creative!: Encourage students to express themselves creatively by having them write original poems or stories inspired by the book or create art projects that represent important events or characters from the book. These creative activities can be done individually or in groups depending on what works best for your class dynamic.
- Create a Learning Environment That Encourages Creative Expression
The best way to foster understanding of this novel is to create an environment where students feel comfortable expressing their own thoughts and ideas without fear of judgement. Provide activities that allow students to interact with the text in creative ways, such as writing their own stories or drawing pictures related to the characters and plotlines. This helps them engage with the material in a meaningful way that encourages critical thinking and self-expression.
- Use Technology To Enhance Student Engagement
Take advantage of technology tools like online discussion forums or virtual bulletin boards to encourage student engagement with the text. These tools provide a platform for students to come together and share their ideas, ask questions, and discuss themes from the novel in a safe space. Plus, they can easily access resources like audio recordings of each chapter or supplemental materials related to the topics discussed in class.
- Utilize Group Projects To Deepen Understanding Of The Text
Group projects are an excellent way for students to explore their understanding of the novel on a deeper level while also developing important social skills like collaboration and communication. Provide opportunities for teams of students to work together on activities like creating presentations about themes from the book or creating videos that illustrate certain scenes from Counting by 7’s . By working collaboratively on these projects, students will gain valuable insights into both the text itself as well as how to effectively collaborate with others on complex tasks–skills which will serve them well after they leave your classroom!
- Willow is described as “a gardener of words”, meaning that language is an important part of her life and understanding of the world. Have your students explore this theme through creative writing activities. Ask them to create a poem inspired by something they have read in the book or compose a short story from one of Willow’s perspectives on any given event or situation. This will help them think critically about what it means for Willow to be a “gardener of words” and how language shapes her worldview
- This novel can lead to interesting conversations about friendship, family, and grief. Ask your students some questions about how these themes are explored in the book such as: How does Willow find solace in reading? What does she learn about friendship from interacting with people outside her family? How do relationships evolve between characters throughout the course of the novel? Encouraging your students to discuss these topics will help them gain insight into how they can use language to express themselves while also developing empathy for others
- One way to get your students engaged with this novel is through group projects. Assign each group a different scene or chapter from the book and have them create a presentation discussing its themes and motifs. This will help them develop their critical thinking skills while also getting more out of the text than they would just reading it alone. You can also assign groups specific tasks such as creating posters illustrating particular scenes or writing skits based on dialogue from certain chapters. This type of activity adds another layer for your students to explore and helps bring the text alive for everyone involved!
CLICK HERE for the Digital Course Above.
The novel Counting By 7’s Holly Sloan Goldberg is an excellent tool for helping students explore important topics related to friendship, identity, self-discovery and more! With a little creativity, you can use this book to engage your students in meaningful conversations that will stay with them long after they’ve finished reading it! So get out there and start counting!
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