Do you need lesson ideas and Dot activities? I have you covered in this blog post.
We simply love The Dot by Peter H. Reynolds. It is one that we use year after year. Here are a few activities and lesson plan ideas for you to use with this book or on International Dot Day, on September 15th… every year! [Yes… it is a thing!]
The Dot Activities for Growth Mindset
This is one of those books that work well for teaching a growth mindset, and you can use it with older students and younger students alike. Confession: When I try something new that I feel like I want to give up on, I think of Vashti from time to time.
Here is a quick synopsis of the book. Vashti does not feel confident in art class. Her teacher told her, “Just make a mark and see where it takes you.”
Slowly but surely, Vashti begins to see herself as an artist as she starts to explore the creative ways she can expand on her dot creation collection. She even passes it on to another student during the school art show at the end of the story.
I can’t help but think about how students often don’t see themselves as readers or as writers, or even artists at the beginning of the school year. You will even want to revisit this book throughout the year.
The Dot Actvities and Lesson Plans for Reading Comprehension
In our Engaging Readers Reading Comprehension series, we revisit a single text and dive deeper into the text. Each day, we revisit the book for a different lesson focus. Here are some of the literacy activities we do with this book.
On the second day with this book, the entire class participates in the retelling of the story. The big lesson plan idea is to get students to notice the details in the story. It is also a great way to foster oral language as students practice retelling the story again and again.
After the whole group lesson, this can quickly turn this activity into an independent learning center. Students can always open the book to remember the story if they need to.
An additional reading comprehension lesson is we examine the main character. Vashti starts out as an angry little girl who makes an angry dot. Yet over time, she changes. Here are a few ideas for an anchor chart you could create with your own class students.
You can find all of these lesson plans and activities for The Dot, plus 5 additional back to school reading comprehension lessons by clicking:
The Dot Videos
Do you know about Emily Arrow on YouTube? She wrote The Dot Song to go with this great book. It has hand motions that go along with it, which is perfect for your Dot Day activities!
I also love this recording of The Dot because it is by Peter Reynolds. He also talks about where he got the idea to write the book! What a great way to listen to REAL LIFE AUTHORS for writers’ workshop mini-lessons.
You will want to be sure to include this video in your Dot activities.
Here is a recording of the entire book, The Dot!
The Dot Art Projects
We always include an art project or craft in each of our Engaging Readers Reading Comprehension units. Students create their own dot art project with watercolor paints. If you want thicker paper than watercolor paper, you can also use tempura paint on paper plates! This is always a lot of fun. Some students make more than one by using a different piece of paper and exploring! This is also a fun way to strengthen fine motor skills.
I love the art projects that Elementary Arts posted on his Instagram page. His feed is filled with a fantastic ideas for International Dot Day.
In addition to this project, you will find many more ideas.
And this is a picture from my friend Michelle Oakes [also my birthday twin]. This was created by her school counselor. You can read more about this project HERE.
The Dot Activities for Science
In this awesome activity, students explore chromatography. In the simplest of terms, students can see the different colors that make up the color black. I have found that Mr. Sketch Markers work best for this activity.
These are coffee filters, and they work perfectly for this activity!
Here is the STEM response sheet that goes with this student activity.
The Dot Snacks! Did Someone Say SNACKS?!
You had me at snack! I’m pretty sure this is a full day’s worth of sugar and carbohydrates, but in the interest of a fun activity… isn’t this perfect for The Dot Day?
You can find this recipe over Cravings of a Lunatic, which is pretty much my life’s story…ha!
The Dot Literacy Skills Centers
These fun activities can be differentiated. For example, some students may need the beginning sound sort.
Other students will be reading for the word family sort.
The Dot Math Skills Centers
Students will work on adding the missing number to these math problem task cards.
The Dot Worksheet Activity
These two little friends are playing a fun math game!
You can find the STEM activity and the center activities in our Science, Math, and More Extention Units.
Would you like to learn more about the power of an Interactive Read Aloud?
The Dot Free File Worksheet Activities
I created these fun and free worksheets for you. These are also differentiated. Here is what you will find in these Dot themed set of worksheets:
- Beginning Sounds Worksheet
- Short Vowel Sounds Worksheet
- Counting Worksheet
- Add 1 Math Worksheet
Simply add your name to the box below, and the free file will be sent to your email inbox.
Don’t you just love Emily Arrow? I think she is the cutest!
Hi! As an owner of your guiding readers units, I’m loving following these posts! Thank you so much for doing them! As for the guiding readers math, science, and more… Do you/Will you have those in a bundle with all the months? I can usually get my admin to purchase things like that to supplement my curriculum, but I’d feel bad asking for a new one every month… 🙂
Hi I am ready to start a new year with Kindergarteners! So excited. I am also a subscriber to ESGI and have been watching for your Guided Math assessments for Kindergarten. Do you know when they will be available on ESGI?
Thanks for making my life so much easier!!
Where is the actual lesson plan?
Hi there! You can download the link to the lessons by clicking on the document. OR you can find them in the Guiding Readers units in Deanna Jump’s TpT store.
Thank you so much for these lesson plans. Can you elaborate on the math station activities? I’m trying to get some ideas for math stations. Thank you so much…..
You bet! What do you want to know? Is your question about how I manage math stations? You are welcome to email if you wish.