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Introduce Vocabulary: In the Small, Small Pond (Fleming)

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Lesson Type: Introduce
Grade: K, 1, 2, 3
Group Size: Small Group, Whole Class
Length: 20 minutes
Goal: After listening to a fiction read-aloud, students will know the meaning of three Tier Two vocabulary words.

Materials: In the Small, Small Pond (Fleming), board or chart paper

What to Do


Select three Tier Two vocabulary words to teach your students. A list of suggested words appears below. Write the vocabulary words on the board or on chart paper.


1. Introduce the story.

Today we are going to read a story entitled In the Small, Small Pond.

2. Introduce the three vocabulary words you have chosen.

Before we read the story, I want to introduce some new words that we will come across. Please repeat each word after I say it.

3. Read the story.

Let’s read the story. Make sure to listen for today’s vocabulary words and to think about how they are used in the story. If you hear a vocabulary word while I am reading, raise your hand.

4. Define key vocabulary words. See definitions below.

Let’s think about our vocabulary words. The word ______________ means ____________. Does anyone remember how this word was used in the text?

Call on students to answer the question. Then refer to the text to show how the word was used in context. Repeat this process for each vocabulary word.


Now let’s practice what we’ve learned.


Doze means to sleep lightly. What's the word?

I couldn't get comfortable on the train, so I only dozed. You might doze on a summer afternoon.

I'm going to name some activities. If you think you might sleep lightly during these activities, say doze. Otherwise, stay quiet. Ready?

  • Getting in your bed after a long day
  • On a bumpy airplane ride
  • Watching a boring movie
  • On a long car ride
  • During school


Hover means to hang in the air, like flying but not moving forward. What's the word?

A helicopter can hover and fly forward and backward. If you stand over someone to see what they're doing, it's called hovering.

I'm going to name some animals. If you think the animal can hang in the air, say hover. Otherwise, sit quietly. Ready?

  • A hummingbird
  • A mosquito
  • A hawk
  • A penguin
  • A lizard


Plunge means to jump down or dive. What's the word?

The seal plunged in the ocean to catch a fish. When you jump into the swimming pool, that's called plunging.

I'm going to name some things. If you think you'd jump in to that thing, say plunge. Otherwise, stay quiet. Ready?

  • A calm lake
  • A rushing river
  • A warm bathtub
  • A puddle of mud
  • A swimming pool


Scatter means to run or move quickly in every direction. What's the word?

The marbles scattered all over the kitchen when I dropped the bag. When you and your friends go outside for recess, you scatter over the whole playground.

I'm going to name some items. If you think the item can spread or move quickly in different directions, say scatter. Otherwise, keep quiet. Ready?

  • Frozen peas
  • Blueberries
  • A peanut butter sandwich
  • A bunch of ants
  • A steak


Swoop means to dive quickly toward something. What's the word?

The eagle had to swoop in the air to catch a mouse. When you're running fast and bend over to catch a ball, that's called swooping.

I'm going to name some games. If you might dive quickly toward something in the game, say swoop. Otherwise, stay quiet. Ready?

  • Frisbee
  • Monopoly
  • Baseball
  • Simon Says
  • Soccer


Wade means to walk through water. What's the word?

It rained so hard yesterday, we had to wade to the car. When you want to cool your feet, you can take off your socks and wade in the pool.

I'm going to name some activities. If you think you would walk in the water during the activity, say wade. Otherwise, stay quiet. Ready?

  • A concert at school
  • At the lake on a hot day
  • Cleaning your bedroom
  • Playing in a pool
  • Doing your homework


For Advanced Students:

If time permits, have students create more examples for the vocabulary words.

For Struggling Students:

If time permits, have students record the words on a Vocabulary Discovery Chart or in a Word Journal.

For ELL Students:

In order to help ELL students learn the words, it may be helpful to use realia and/or to teach cognates.

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