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Habitat Podcasts
Content Topic:
After learning about habitats from their classroom teachers, second grade students will work as a group to create podcasts based on the book Westlandia by Paul Fleishman and research from non-fiction resources. Each class will choose a unique habitat (wetlands, tundra, desert, rainforest, etc.), and all classroom podcasts will be posted to the Internet and shared. Students will narrate the podcasts and original illustrations will also be used in this report.
Collaboration Potential:
Concentrated effort with TL, 2nd grade teacher and Art teacher
Total Estimated Time:
3.5 hrs.
Suggested Number Of Sessions:

Westlandia by Paul Fleishman

Non-fiction texts on habitats

Chart paper, markers, podcast application such as Garageband

Instruction / Activities:

Day 1 – Library

(Students should already have background knowledge on habitats from classroom teacher):


Direct Instruction:

  • TL reviews that a habitat consists of common animals and plants and everything they need to survive: shelter and food/water.
  • TL will engage students in an interactive read-aloud of the book Weslandia, stopping to note what the character Wesley uniquely creates to establish his own habitat.
  • TL and class choose which unique habitat the class will research (vote, random selection, etc.)
  • TL creates a large graphic organizer on chart paper with the name of the habitat listed, along with spaces for notes on what is found in the habitat: description, weather, animals, plants, shelter, food/drink.


Modeling and guided practice:

  • TL will use a primary non-fiction text on the specific habitat to show students non-fiction text features like table of contents, index, pictures and captions.
  • TL explains that one does not need to read the whole book to get the information needed. Model using the table of contents and index to find information for each of the categories listed on chart (e.g. weather, animals, plants).
  • TL will highlight the importance of using pictures, captions, and headings to aid students in filling in the information for each of the categories on chart.
  • Students take chart/graphic organizer with them to classroom.


Sharing and reflecting:

  • TL asks for any questions or reflections on the project and explains that students will take chart/graphic organizer with them to their classroom for the next step of this project.


Day 2 – Classroom (with 2nd grade teacher)

  • Students create a class narrative story on their habitat based on the story Weslandia using facts and details from the chart created in library.


Day 3 – Art room (with Art teacher)

  • Students create illustrations for their story on 8 ½ x 11 inch paper.
  • Illustrations are given to TL so they can be scanned into computer prior to next session.


Day 4 – Library

Direct Instruction:

<!--[if !supportLists]-->·         <!--[endif]-->TL introduces podcasts and shows an example.


Modeling and guided practice:

<!--[if !supportLists]-->·         <!--[endif]-->TL demonstrates process by recording her voice as an introduction to the podcast.

<!--[if !supportLists]-->·         <!--[endif]-->TL selects students to come up to computer one at a time to record their part of the class narrative.

<!--[if !supportLists]-->·         <!--[endif]-->TL adds student illustrations to the narrative after voices have been recorded.

<!--[if !supportLists]-->·         <!--[endif]-->Sound effects may be added if time permits.


Sharing and reflecting:

  • Final story is viewed by the entire class.
  • TL leads a discussion to reflect on the process and final product.
  • TL posts all final podcasts on library website.




See examples at:


Classroom teacher, Art teacher
Print this Lesson Plan
Presented By: Lucretia Miller
Collaborative: Classroom teacher, Art teacher
Website by Data Momentum, Inc.