Lesson plan

Thumbs Up or Down?

Catalina Magdalena Hoopensteiner Wallendiner Hogan Logan Bogan Was Her Name, and students will have a blast writing persuasive sentences about her. This quirky lesson is sure to please young, creative minds.
Grade Subject View aligned standards

Students will be able to speak audibly and clearly about an opinion or preference about a book.

(10 minutes)
  • Read aloud Catalina Magdalena Hoopensteiner Wallendiner Hogan Logan Bogan Was Her Name to the students.
  • Encourage students to discuss the parts of the story they liked and did not like with elbow partners.
  • Remind students to speak clearly and loud enough for their partner to hear their thoughts, feelings, or ideas about the book.
(10 minutes)
  • Tell the students to give you reasons why they did not like certain parts of the story. Elaborate that the reasons why they like or don't like something are their opinions.
  • Provide sentence frames to support students in sharing their ideas, such as:
    • I like the part of the story when ____ because ____.
    • I don't like the part of the story when ____ because ____.
  • List student opinions on the chart paper and read them back to the students.
  • Say, "I like the part of the story when she sticks her finger up her nose because it was gross and silly!"
  • Ask the students what you could do to get them to like your favorite part of the story. Allow a few students to share out their ideas.
  • Demonstrate for the students what you would do to convince them, or persuade them to like your favorite part of the story (e.g., reread your favorite part of the story and refer to the silly illustrations/connect a piece of the text to your own life).
(10 minutes)
  • Write this sentence on the chart paper: "I think everyone should like the story _____ because _____."
  • Let the students make suggestions for filling in the blanks. Remind them to speak clearly and loud enough for the class to hear their thoughts and ideas.
(15 minutes)
  • Give the students sheets of writing paper.
  • Instruct them to copy the sentence frame from the board.
  • Circulate the room to be sure students have left enough space to write their answers.
  • Tell the students they are to write one reason why someone should like the story about Catalina Magdalena. Explain to the students that they can use a combination of drawing and writing to record their opinions.
  • Dictate example sentences for students as needed.


  • Advanced students can write multiple sentences.


  • Let struggling students dictate their sentence to you. Write it on a sheet of paper for them to copy.
(15 minutes)
  • Invite students to share their sentences in partnerships. Encourage students to refer to the drawings they created and use them to express their opinion clearly and persuade others that this story is a good one!
  • Collect the papers and review student work to make sure that students reached the learning goal from the lesson.
  • Reteach for those who need further assistance.
  • Ask student volunteers to clearly and audibly share their opinions about their partner's presentation. Have them tell the class if they were persuaded by their partner's response.
(5 minutes)
  • Ask a few student volunteers to choose their favorite book from the classroom.
  • Encourage the students to explain why they chose the book they did, using the following sentence frames:
    • This is my favorite book because ____. I think you should read this book because ____.
  • Invite peers to discuss whether or not they will check out the book during independent reading.
  • Close the lesson by reinforcing that it's important to form our own opinions on topics and books we read, and if we want others to like what we like, we can try to persuade them by listing reasons to support our opinions!

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