Little House in the Big Woods
Age 8-10: Concept 1 - Interdependence: Unit 1

Look at life in the woods through the eyes of a pioneer child as she contributes to the work of the family. Learn how the lives of the pioneers were dependent on their natural environment. Learn capitalization rules, review types of sentences, and practice writing a three-paragraph essay and a formal letter. For the final project, prepare for and host a pioneer family night.

This unit can be used independently but is designed to be taught in conjunction with the science and social studies unit Dirt and Plants.


  • 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: Introducing the Story
  • Lesson 2: Little House in the Big Woods
  • Lesson 3: Winter Days and Winter Nights
  • Lesson 4: The Long Rifle
  • Lesson 5: Christmas
  • Lesson 6: Sundays and Two Big Bears
  • Lesson 7: The Sugar Snow
  • Lesson 8: Dance at Grandpa's
  • Lesson 9: Going to Town
  • Lesson 10: Summertime and Harvest
  • Lesson 11: Finishing the Book
  • Final Project: Pioneer Family Night (2 Days)

Summary of Skills

Moving Beyond the Page is based on state and national standards. These standards are covered in this unit.
  • Adapt speech communication to the audience, purpose, and occasion. (Language Arts)
  • Analyze characters, including their traits, feelings, relationships, and the changes they experience. (Language Arts)
  • Compare a dramatic performance with a print version of the same story. (Language Arts)
  • Compare language and oral traditions (family stories) that reflect customs, regions, and cultures. (Language Arts)
  • Compose a draft of preliminary plans that conveys major ideas and maintains focus on a topic. (Language Arts)
  • Compose a variety of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and drama selections on given topics. (Language Arts)
  • Conduct research (with assistance) for assigned and self-selected projects from a variety of sources. (Language Arts)
  • Connect own experiences with the experiences, language, customs, and culture of others through speaking and listening. (Language Arts)
  • Consider the difference between fiction and nonfiction using interpretive, critical, and evaluative processes. (Language Arts)
  • Demonstrate learning through productions and displays such as reports, illustrations, and dramatizations. (Language Arts)
  • Demonstrate understanding by using a variety of complete sentences (declarative, imperative, interrogative, and exclamatory) in writing and speaking. (Language Arts)
  • Draw conclusions from gathered information. (Language Arts)
  • Draw conclusions, make generalizations, and gather support by referencing the text. (Language Arts)
  • Identify (with assistance) the purpose, audience, and appropriate format for an oral presentation. (Language Arts)
  • Identify and discuss similarities and differences in events, characters, and concepts across selections and support them by referencing the text. (Language Arts)
  • Increase reading and writing vocabulary through word study. (Language Arts)
  • Interact with the text before, during, and after reading by asking questions. (Language Arts)
  • Interact with the text by making connections, answering questions, and locating information. (Language Arts)
  • Interpret, create, and use graphic sources of information, including maps, charts, graphs, and diagrams. (Language Arts)
  • Organize information using notes, charts, and labels. (Language Arts)
  • Produce work that follows the conventions of a particular genre (e.g., personal narrative, short report, friendly letter, directions, and instructions). (Language Arts)
  • Proofread writing and correct most misspellings independently with reference to resources. (Language Arts)
  • Read aloud grade-appropriate text with fluency, comprehension, and expression. (Language Arts)
  • Read independently. (Language Arts)
  • Recognize the difference between fact and opinion. (Language Arts)
  • Relate plot, setting, and characters to own experiences and ideas. (Language Arts)
  • Respond to fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and drama using interpretive and evaluative processes. (Language Arts)
  • Respond to text by reflecting on learning, gaining new insights, and identifying areas for further study. (Language Arts)
  • Share an oral project through presentation. (Language Arts)
  • Share written and oral products. (Language Arts)
  • Summarize main ideas from written or spoken texts, using succinct language. (Language Arts)
  • Use correct capitalization in writing. (Language Arts)
  • Use oral and written language to answer open-ended questions. (Language Arts)
  • Use oral and written language to present information in a sequenced, logical manner in order to support the following skills: discuss and sustain conversation on a topic, share information and ideas, recount or narrate, and share written and oral products in a variety of ways. (Language Arts)
  • Use planning strategies to organize ideas. (Language Arts)
  • Use story structure and text organization to comprehend text. (Language Arts)
  • Use word reference materials (e.g., dictionary, glossary) to confirm decoding skills, verify spelling, and extend meanings of words. (Language Arts)
  • Write with more proficient spellings of inflectional endings, including plurals, past tense, and words that drop the final "e" when -ing, -ed, or -able are added. (Language Arts)
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