Sample Lesson Plan - The Coquí and The Iguana
Lesson 1 – Pre-Reading
To gain geographical and historical understanding of the story’s setting
To develop cultural awareness
To utilize brainstorming skills by predicting possible storylines
To gain an understanding of the habitats and physiology of coquís and iguanas.
The Coquí & The Iguana books
Pictures of coquís
Pictures of iguanas
Picture of a Puerto Rican flag
Information on Puerto Rico’s history & affiliation with the U.S.
Map of the world or globe
Sound of coquí
http://www.topuertorico.org (for links on history, government, culture, etc.)
http://www.topuertorico.org/reference/flag.shtml (link for flag & flag’s history)
http://www.topuertorico.org/coqui.shtml (link for information on the coquí)
www.youtube.com and type in “a real coquí from Puerto Rico” (include quotes)
Teaching the Lesson
1. Instruct students to arrange their desks into a circle. Distribute The Coquí & The Iguana book to each child. Have students look over the cover and briefly skim through the book.
2. Ask students to raise their hands if they know what an iguana is. Ask them to do the same if they know what a coquí (pronounced ko-KEE) is. Note any difference in hands. Show the class pictures of both animals. Ask a student who knows what a coquí is, to explain aloud what they know about the animal. Then explain to the class what a coquí is: a tiny, tree frog native to Puerto Rico. Explain that at night, the male coquí sings its song, and if possible, play it for the children to hear. Ask why they think only male coquís sing (to attract female coquís). Discuss any other animals that have distinguishing features used to attract females (examples: a male peacock’s feathers, the mane of a male lion, etc.).
3. Show the children the location of Puerto Rico on a map or globe as well as its corresponding flag. Note that Puerto Rico is an archipelago. Identify its surrounding bodies of water and its relation to where they live. Ask the children to predict what type of weather the island might have. Explain to the children that Puerto Rico is a commonwealth of The United States, what it means to be a commonwealth, and that their native language is Spanish. Ask the children if they can identify any states that are archipelagos (Hawaii) and if they know of any other United States Territories (The US Virgin Islands). Discuss with the children that Puerto Rico became a part of the United States as a result of the Spanish American War in 1898. Discuss the results of that war in terms of land acquisition. Ask if any students have ever visited Puerto Rico.
4. Instruct students to work individually and brainstorm on what they think the book might be about, based upon your discussion, their visual observations & skimming. Once they have completed their work, encourage them to share any predictions with the class.