Familiar Stories

Students become engaged in reading through a variety of familiar stories with predictable patterns and illustrations that allow them to anticipate words, phrases, and events on their own.

Unit Summary

In this unit, students are exposed to familiar stories with predictable patterns and illustrations. Exposure to predictable texts is incredibly important for beginning readers as they begin to explore the world of reading independently. Predictable texts are incredibly engaging for students, allowing them to anticipate words, phrases, and events on their own and better follow the storyline sequence of a story. The story patterns also allow students to try and read the stories on their own, using the repetitive texts and pictures as a guide for either reading or pretending to read the story. Predictable texts are also incredibly important for exposing students to phonological awareness concepts in context, particularly rhyme, rhythm, and fluency. In order for students to reap these benefits, however, they need to deeply engage with the stories. This means that the stories need to be read, reread, retold, and reread some more so that students are able to build the confidence they need to pretend to read or read the text on their own. Within the context of this unit, students are only exposed to the text once; therefore, it is the responsibility of the teacher to find ways to bring the stories to life in other parts of the day so that students are able to reap the rewards of engaging with predictable texts or, if necessary, to slow down the pacing of the unit in order to include multiple readings of a text.

In reading, students will continue to be challenged to ask and answer questions about the texts they read daily. Students will begin to work on retelling what happens to the characters in the story, using key details from the text and illustrations. Because the stories are repetitive in nature, this unit provides a strong foundation for teaching how to retell a story. Another focus of this unit is on understanding how authors and illustrators use illustrations and repetition to help a reader understand the main events in a story. Students will learn how to closely “read” illustrations for subtle clues about character feeling or foreshadowing clues for what is going to happen next in a story. In order to engage deeply in the content, students will continue to develop active participation and discussion habits, allowing them to learn from and with one another.

In writing, students will continue to write daily in response to the text. In Unit 1, the focus was on establishing the routines and procedures necessary for daily writing about reading. In this unit, students will continue to write daily in response to the text with a focus on using words and pictures to correctly answer the question.

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Texts and Materials

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Core Materials

See Text Selection Rationale


This assessment accompanies this unit and should be given on the suggested assessment day or after completing the unit.

Unit Prep

Essential Questions


  • What makes stories fun to read?

Writing Focus Areas


In Unit 1, students learned the routines and procedures for daily writing about reading. In this unit, students will continue to write daily in response to the text with a focus on using a combination of drawings and words to correctly answer the question. Short mini-lessons should be included before students go to write on their own to model how to take ideas from a class discussion and turn them into pictures and words that correctly answer a question. Some students will only be able to use pictures, others will begin to use words, and some may be ready to include more advanced ideas such as inferences, critical thinking, or facts to support their answers. Due to the varying ranges in ability, individualized feedback is incredibly important to ensure that students are progressing toward the target of using a combination of drawings and words to correctly answer a question. 




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Content Knowledge and Connections


  • Stories are fun to read when: 
    • Silly things happen
    • Authors repeat things
    • The illustrations are interesting

Lesson Map

Common Core Standards

Language Standards
  • L.K.1 — Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English grammar and usage when writing or speaking.

  • L.K.4 — Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown and multiple-meaning words and phrases based on kindergarten reading and content.

  • L.K.5.d — Distinguish shades of meaning among verbs describing the same general action (e.g., walk, march, strut, prance) by acting out the meanings.

  • L.K.6 — Use words and phrases acquired through conversations, reading and being read to, and responding to texts.

Reading Standards for Literature
  • RL.K.2 — With prompting and support, retell familiar stories, including key details.

  • RL.K.3 — With prompting and support, identify characters, settings, and major events in a story.

  • RL.K.6 — With prompting and support, name the author and illustrator of a story and define the role of each in telling the story.

Speaking and Listening Standards
  • SL.K.1 — Participate in collaborative conversations with diverse partners about kindergarten topics and texts with peers and adults in small and larger groups.

  • SL.K.2 — Confirm understanding of a text read aloud or information presented orally or through other media by asking and answering questions about key details and requesting clarification if something is not understood.

  • SL.K.6 — Speak audibly and express thoughts, feelings, and ideas clearly.

Writing Standards
  • W.K.1 — Use a combination of drawing, dictating, and writing to compose opinion pieces in which they tell a reader the topic or the name of the book they are writing about and state an opinion or preference about the topic or book (e.g., My favorite book is…).

Spiral Standards