Mentor Text Lessons with a Science Twist

Happy New Year and Welcome to the Mentor Text Blog Lessons and Give Away. You will want to be sure to enter at the end of the post for a chance to win all the books.  My mystery word is SNOWBALL.

Book Summary: 
The book Snowballs is a beautiful illustrated short story about how snow is made into snowmen and then they melt and disappear at the end. It is a really simple book but we had lots of very meaningful discussions about its simple text. The book also goes more in depth and talks about how water takes 3 forms, solid, liquid and gas. It also includes is a very detailed description of how snow is made.

Lesson Introduction: To get ready to read this book with your students show them the cover and ask what they think the book will be about. My students had lots of discussion about why it would be called snowballs. There was also discussion about the bird and the food on the snowman face.

Before Reading: The title page also can bring about discussion too. What is happening with the birds, what do you notice, etc. How does this build on the cover page? Be sure to let them predict from the cover on the very first question of my freebie before reading the story.

During Reading: The book starts with a question and we talked quite a bit about how birds would know it is going to snow. Migration even came up with my students. I was very impressed with their deep thinking about this simple little question. My FREEBIE includes questions to use while reading the book. Copy the page front to back and students will write answers to questions as you stop while reading and give them time to do so. Also take time to discuss their answers as you are reading.

After Reading:  The book lends itself well to be split into a two day lesson. The first day read the simple large words and the next day go more into a Science lesson about Solid, Liquid, and Gas as you can focus on the snow info section of the book. Even the back cover works well for the Science part. There are many weather reports that can be looked at and discussed. Copying the back so all your students have their own copy to read works well.

How to Use My Resource: My FREEBIE resource is also included in the Snowballs Book Companion. It is used during the 2 days reading the book. Students will write down answers on the pages while you are reading the book and pausing to give them time to write the answers and then discussing as a class. The rest of my resource  has lots of other fun activities to use after reading the book.

Lesson Extension:
A Science Experiment you have probably seen before but now with a twist becomes the Snowman's Magic Hat Experiment. Supply list, patterns, and step by step directions are all included in my Snowballs Book Companion resource. I will be featuring videos on my Instastory at my Instagram account today.

More Lesson Extensions:

Making a weather report and recording on Telestory app is another fun extension activity. (The photos with the weather reports on the back of the book shows a iPad and what this will look like.) Creating snow families with Faces iMake app and writing stories about them. Recording weather, weighing and recording a melting snowball, verb hunt, adjectives using a thesaurus, other extra ideas include map skills, and recording learning from listening to a video.

Thanks so much for stopping by.


  1. CUUUUUUUUUTE activities, Anita!!! I love this post :)
    The Techie Teacher

  2. This is one of my favorite winter books! I love to pull it out and examine all the different objects that are used. So much fun! Thanks for sharing all of your ideas!

    1. Thanks so much for your sweet comments. I hope you have some more ideas to use with this book now.

  3. I discovered the iFaces app last year, and now can't wait to help my second graders use it to create their own Snowball-inspired collages!


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