Big Plans by Bob Shea and Lane Smith

August Theme: Motivating Readers

Recommended Grades: 3rd-5th grades

In Big Plans a little boy sits in the corner of his classroom plotting his future and his plans are BIG! With the help of his bird and a lucky stinky hat, he may become Mayor, President, or fly to the moon!  

A great book to use to guide students to think about their own big plans. This book could be a great discussion starter at the beginning of the school year to elicit student plans for the year and to motivate them to create plans. This book can be used in a number of ways:
Lesson Plan Ideas:
Goal Setting: After reading aloud this book, discuss the ideas of making goals with your students. As a class make a list of goals to complete for the year. Post them prominently so students can see when goals are achieved. In addition, ask students to make individual goals. For younger students, this may only mean one or two goals – or conduct a shared writing with younger students to determine their goals. Older students should be able to make four or five. Don’t get caught up in the number of goals though, each child will be different. Throughout the year, revisit the class goals and individual goals and determine how to meet them and if they have been met. In addition, students may want to revise their goals or add new ones.
Writers Workshop: After reading aloud this book, discuss the idea of having dreams and goals (BIG plans!). Ask your students to create a list in their writers notebook of their dreams and goals (no matter how far fetched!). Later on in the year, when students need a writing piece, they can choose one of their dreams or goals to elaborate on. Perhaps they will want to write down the steps they may need to take to reach a goal. Or, if a goal has already been met, perhaps they would like to share what they did to meet their goal.

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