Lesson Plan

Asking and Answering Questions

Asking and Answering Questions to Understand the text

Students will be able to ask and answer questions to help them understand the text more deeply.

English Language Arts
Grades 4
All Notes
Teacher Notes
Student Notes

1 Connect

Activity: Reading

I’ve noticed that you all have a lot of different kinds of questions about the text as you read, you all thought of some interesting questions when you read chapter 1 of Our Solar System.  Good readers always ask questions of themselves and the text as they read.  They can find the answers to these questions by looking in the text and by making inferences.  This will help you understand what we read better, so today you will practice answering your questions and how they help you understand the book better.


2 Model

Activity: Reading

Open your books up to page 8 of your book, and follow along with me.  As I read, I’m going to talk through some of the questions that U think about as I’m reading and how they help me understand better.


Questions and answers about the text:

How many days are in a year on Mercury?

Why did the Mariner 10 probe take pictures of Mercury?


This first question is a thin question.  It is a question that I can answer by looking in the text.  I can look back at the text to see that there are less than two days in a year on Mercury(add question next to the thin side of the chart).  Answering this question can help me understand what the text says on a surface level.  It helps me understand how different the earth and mercury are, which helps me understand what the text says better.


My second question about the text is a “thick” question  It’s a question that I can’t answer by looking at the surface of the text.  I need to use what I already know to make inferences to answer the question.  I know from the last book we read that scientists sent probes into space to learn about space, so that is probably why the Mariner 10 took pictures of Mercury.  This helps me understand this page more deeply because I know that the picture of Mercury on the page helped scientists learn about Mercury, and we can learn about Mercury from the picture too.

3 Engage

Free, Paid

Now find one of the questions that you asked about the text when you had your book for the week, or if you don’t have your questions, take a minute to think of one.  Answer your question, then decide with someone sitting next to you where you should place it on the chart.  

Students will come up and place their questions on the chart.

How do these questions help you understand the text better?

Student Instructions

1. Go to http://padlet.com/hoppmas/yk0cxba02vrm



2. Click the blackboard to add a comment, and type your question.

3. Drag your question to the center column, which will have the heading: "Your Questions"

4. After you talk with your partner, drag your question into the correct column.

4 Independent Work

Asking and answering questions like this while you read will help you understand what you read, and think about the text more deeply.  This is something you can continue to practice as you review chapters two and three and the questions you asked about those chapters.

Now look at the rest of the questions that you already asked about chapters two and three, and ask a couple more questions about text, and think about how you can answer those questions.  Can you answer them using the text, or are they questions that you have to answer by making inferences?  Focus on finding the answers to “thick” questions and think about how they help you understand the text more deeply.  Organize and record your questions and answers using InkFlow.


Discussion Questions:

How does that question help you understand the text better?

Can you find the answer to that question in the text?

Can you use your prior knowledge to help you answer that question?

Can you infer the answer to that question?

Do you think that question has only one answer?

Where do you think you could find the answer to that question?

Student Instructions

1. Open the Inkflow app

2. Create a new book by tapping the + in the top right corner.

3. Draw a T-Chart with "thick" and "thin" questions and record your questions and answers.  If you need more room, tap the arrow at the top of the screen to create more pages.

6. Erase and reorganize your questions and answers using the cut/paste tool in the tool bar.

5. Take a screen shot of your Inkflow when you are finished.

5 Share

Wow, I noticed you all asked some great questions about the text, and found some very interesting answers.  Now I want you to think more about how those questions help you understand the text.  Choose one of your questions and explain how it helps you understand the text using PhotoAside.  

Students share their PhotoAsides.

Student Instructions

1. Open the PhotAside app

2. Tap the "import" folder in the bottom left corner.

Image result for file folder icon black and white

3. Select the screenshot of your Inkflow.

4. Select the pencil and circle one of your questions and answers.

4. Hold the red recording button at the bottom of the screen and explain how that question and answer help you understand the text better.

5. Play your PhotoAside and record it on your iPAD by holding the power button and the home button until the PhotoAside finishes playing.

6. Open your video in photos, and upload it to GoogleDrive.


6 Closing

Activity: Reading

Today we learned how to answer “thin” and “thick” questions while we read by looking to the text and making inferences.  This is a good skill for you to have as readers because it can help you understand what you read more deeply.  Next time you read you can stop and answer the questions you think of to help you comprehend the text.