Hameray Classroom Literacy Blog

Classic Post: Teaching Similarities and Differences with More than Two Animals—with FREE Download!

This is a guest blog post from Susanna Westby of   Whimsy Workshop   that originally ran in February 2014, and it includes a FREE  download with worksheets! See the bottom of the post for the link to download, and check back frequently for more great classroom-tested ideas!   If you'd like to see her other contributions to this blog, click here !

Hello again! I’m Susanna from Whimsy Workshop Teaching, and today I’m sharing with you some examples of how I use books from the   Zoozoo Animal World   and   Zoozoo Into the Wild   series of informational texts in my classroom:   Frog    by Claire Vial and Graham Meadows   and   Sheep    and   Pig    by Lee Waters.

Our last lesson  compared and contrasted two animals from different biomes. This time, we are using the books to compare more than two different animals and species to see what information we can find, and explore different ways of organizing that information. Our first task was to read through the books together. We projected the images so that we could read together and notice the details of each animal. Each page gave us information to add to our list .

We identified relevant vocabulary words by circling or underlining. We made lists on the board as we went along to keep track of information, as you can see in the picture.


Once we were done, students completed a task to compare all three animals. This was quite a challenge! They referred back to the lists we made on the board, and read through the books several more times to confirm information and find new ideas.


I have included our three-animal comparison sheet as a free download to try with your class! You can find it at the bottom of this page.


I have been teaching primary grades for 20 years. My classroom is a place of hands-on, creative learning where students feel safe to make mistakes and learn from them! I live near Vancouver, BC Canada with my music-teacher husband and two teenage boys. More literacy ideas and graphics can be found on my blog,   Whimsy Workshop Teaching .


Download your free three-animal comparison sheet by clicking the worksheet image below! For more information on the Zoozoo series, click the images below to download a series information sheets with highlights and key features.