Clark the Shark by Bruce Hale is a such a great book to use at the beginning of the year. Your students will have a great time learning about Clark and the other characters in the book, while also learning about classroom expectations and self regulation.
Clark the Shark Summary
“Clark the Shark” tells the story of an enthusiastic shark named Clark who adores school and revels in his vibrant life. However, his exuberance often leads to a lack of self control. Clark’s boisterous nature manifests through speaking loudly, playing intensely, and becoming overly enthusiastic, frequently resulting in poor impulse control. Unfortunately, his classmates become increasingly irritated by his behavior.
Fortunately, Clark’s teacher, Mrs. Inkydink, guides him. . She imparts valuable lessons, teaching Clark that it’s perfectly fine to be excited but also essential to maintain composure at school. To aid his memory, Clark adopts the practice of repeating rhymes that encapsulate the school’s rules. This newfound technique helps him regulate his impulses and astoundingly transforms his interactions with friends at school, who are delighted by the positive change they witness in him.
In addition to being a fun book to start the school year, this is also a perfect complement to discussing social skills in the classroom. You could take a page from Clark’s teacher Mrs. Inkydink and use this book to guide students to make good choices in the classroom.
Can you think of a really enthusiastic student who might benefit from these gentle reminders? Do you have a student or two who has a hard time using their indoor voices? [I see you nodding your head.]
CLARK THE SHARK ACTIVITIES CLOSE READ
Clark the Shark Activities and Lesson Ideas – Reading Comprehension
In our, Engaging Readers units, students spend a week with a book. We love focusing on one text per week for our interactive read aloud and Clark the Shark is a perfect book for this purpose. Taking time with a read aloud allows us to slow down our thinking and examine the meaning of the text in different ways.
During this time, the teacher will read Clark the Shark to the class and do the decoding work, while the students are asked to do the comprehension work. A series of discussion questions are asked to guide students’ thinking. These discussion and writing prompts are a great way to focus the students’ partner chats.
Character Analysis – Clark the Shark
We ask the students to consider these questions:
Knowing the characters helps readers understand what they are reading. You can get to know the characters by thinking about how they look and the things that they do and say.
- Discuss how Clark acts at the beginning of the book.
- Discuss how he feels at the end of the book.
- Discuss whether the students think the new kid will stay “cool at school.”
Then students work together to discuss what they have noticed and work together to create an anchor chart similar to the one below.
Retelling the Story – Clark the Shark
We also know that primary students need a lot of practice retelling the story and including text details. So each week we practice telling the story in sequential order. This is done as a whole group activity with students discussing the text details and events in Clark the Shark with their partners. Then students work on their own retelling.
Clark the Shark Close Reading
You can not do justice to a close read without the book. However, there are advantages for students do hear a different example of reading fluency. That’s when we love to include a video version of the book. We encourage teachers to limit the video use to just once a week.
This video verision of Clark the Shark is read by the actor, Chris Pine [swoon.]
Clark the Shark Craft Activities
Students completed the Clark the Shark craft then added our sentence study. In sentence study, we look for various print concepts. We also do a little grammar work. The directions for this craft are also included in our Engaging Readers Comprehension units. Click here to find this craft and all of the reading comprehension activities to go with Clark the Shark:
Done for you Clark the Shark Activities
I hope you found a few new favorite shark activities to add to your own classroom. However, if you would like us to do the heavy lifting for you we have these low prep activities done for you. Each day’s lesson is scripted for you with a series of printable activities that you just need to simply click print!
Other Center Ideas for the Week
Here are a few other center ideas.
Writing Center for October
This is an older picture and the unit has been updated, but you can get an idea of what the writing center looks like.
You can find this writing center by clicking:
This pocket chart sentence center was a staple in my room. Students work on building sentences then writing them.
You can find these by clicking:
Clark the Shark Lesson Ideas and Plan Template
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