Stories from Africa and Asia
Age 8-10: Concept 3 - Similarities and Differences: Unit 1

This unit can be used independently, but it is also designed to be used concurrently with the science and social studies Unit 1: Africa and Asia.


  • Able to read and comprehend chapter books at a 4th or 5th grade reading level
  • Able to write an organized paragraph
  • Usually used by children in fourth grade

Table of Contents

  • Lesson 1: Meerkats in Botswana
  • Lesson 2: Meeting Precious
  • Lesson 3: The Surprise
  • Lesson 4: A Missing Cow
  • Lesson 5: A Good Idea
  • Lesson 6: African Bush Diorama (2 Days)
  • Lesson 7: Japan
  • Lesson 8: Peace Day
  • Lesson 9: The Secret is Out
  • Lesson 10: Kenji
  • Lesson 11: O Bon
  • Lesson 12: Racing the Wind
  • Lesson 13: Precious and Sadako

Summary of Skills

Moving Beyond the Page is based on state and national standards. These standards are covered in this unit.
  • Analyze characters, including their traits, feelings, relationships, and changes. (Language Arts)
  • Answer open-ended questions. (Language Arts)
  • Compare experiences of characters across cultures. (Language Arts)
  • Compose a draft that conveys major ideas and maintains focus on the topic. (Language Arts)
  • Compose a variety of written products, including letters. (Language Arts)
  • Conduct research by gathering information from a variety of sources. (Language Arts)
  • Connect experiences and ideas with those of others through speaking and listening. (Language Arts)
  • Connect personal experiences with the life experiences, language, customs, and culture of others. (Language Arts)
  • Consider a character's point of view (Language Arts)
  • Develop vocabulary through reading. (Language Arts)
  • Draw conclusions, make generalizations, and gather support by referencing the text. (Language Arts)
  • Extend vocabulary through word study. (Language Arts)
  • Identify (with assistance) the purpose, the audience, and the appropriate form for the oral or written assignment. (Language Arts)
  • Identify and discuss similarities and differences in events, characters, concepts, and ideas within and across selections and support them by referencing the text. (Language Arts)
  • Identify areas of further study when reading text. (Language Arts)
  • Identify the conflict in a story. (Language Arts)
  • Identify the purpose, audience, and appropriate form for a written task. (Language Arts)
  • Interact with text by making predictions and drawing connections. (Language Arts)
  • Locate information for specific purposes. (Language Arts)
  • Make predictions about text. (Language Arts)
  • Practice different kinds of questions and tasks, including test-like comprehension questions. (Language Arts)
  • Present information in a sequenced, logical manner. (Language Arts)
  • Read from a variety of genres to acquire information. (Language Arts)
  • Read independently to build background knowledge. (Language Arts)
  • Read orally from familiar texts with fluency (accuracy, expression, appropriate phrasing, and attention to punctuation). (Language Arts)
  • Read silently and orally from text. (Language Arts)
  • Recognize the number of syllables in a word. (Language Arts)
  • Recount or narrate. (Language Arts)
  • Relate plot, setting, and characters to own experiences. (Language Arts)
  • Represent text information in different ways, including story maps, graphs, and charts. (Language Arts)
  • Respond to stories and poems in ways that reflect understanding (in discussion, in writing, and through movement, music, art, and drama). (Language Arts)
  • Share information and ideas. (Language Arts)
  • Share written, oral, and constructed projects in a variety of ways. (Language Arts)
  • Summarize the plot or major events of a story. (Language Arts)
  • Sustain conversation on a topic. (Language Arts)
  • Use oral and written language to present information in a sequenced, logical manner. (Language Arts)
  • Use planning strategies to organize ideas. (Language Arts)
  • Use the correct verb tense when writing sentences. (Language Arts)
  • Use word reference materials (e.g. dictionary, glossary) to confirm decoding skills, verify spelling, and extend meanings of words. (Language Arts)
  • Use written language to report information on a topic. (Language Arts)
  • Write in different forms, such as poetry, for different purposes. (Language Arts)
  • Write to record ideas and reflections. (Language Arts)
  • Differentiate between groups and species of animals. (Science)
  • Identify habitats and the living things that exist there. (Science)
  • Recognize types of scientists and the jobs that they do. (Science)
  • Recognize types of scientists and the jobs they do. (Science)
  • Analyze similarities and differences among families in different times and places. (Social Studies)
  • Compare traditions that reflect cultures, regions, and customs. (Social Studies)
  • Describe similarities and differences among communities in different times and in different places. (Social Studies)
  • Distinguish and compare the roles of children and adults in the local community to selected communities around the world. (Social Studies)
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