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Family Times. Journey to the Center of the Earth. Daily Questions. Prior Knowledge. Cause and Effect. Vocabulary. Context Clues. Predictions. Guided Comprehension. Author's Purpose. Fantasy in Science Fiction. Independent Readers. Crust, Mantle, Core. Additional Resources.

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Family Times

Journey to the Center of the Earth

Daily Questions

Prior Knowledge

Cause and Effect


Context Clues


Guided Comprehension

Author's Purpose

Fantasy in Science Fiction

Independent Readers

Crust, Mantle, Core

Additional Resources

study skills
Study Skills
  • Genre:Science Fiction
  • Comprehension Skill:Cause and Effect
  • Comprehension Strategy:Summarize
  • Vocabulary: Context Clues

Question of the week

How do we explore the center of the Earth?

Daily Questions

What characteristics are important for an explorer to have?

How would you feel if yours were the first human eyes to see the ichthyosaurus and plesiosaurus?

What, to you, is the most interesting thing scientists have learned about what lies below Earth’s Surface?


Activate Prior Knowledge:

Brainstorm about what they would find if they could see a cross-section of the Earth.

Making Predictions

Making Observations

Carrying Out Experiments

Comparing Results

This is the Scientific Method


Cause and Effect

A cause (why something happens) may have several effects. An effect (What happens as a result of the cause) may have several causes.

Sometimes clue words such as since, as a result, caused, thus, therefore, and consequently are used to show cause-and-effect relationships.









Summarizing, telling what a story or article is basically about, helps you understand and remember what you read. It helps you figure out main ideas and find important supporting details. It also helps you see important causes and effects.



Read the selection “Earth.” Create graphic organizers like the ones above to show any causes and effects in the selection.

Write a summary of the selection “Earth.” Use your graphic organizers to help you.


Introduce Vocabulary





















Any kind of protective covering



Covers completely; encloses



No longer existing



Very ugly; frightful; horrible



Fell or moved suddenly downward or forward



Snake, especially a big snake


More Words to Know

Calculations Careful thinking; deliberate plans

Ichthyosaurus: A large fishlike reptile, now extinct, that lived in the sea.

Pleisosaurus: Any of several large sea reptiles that lived about 200 million years ago.


Practice Lesson Vocabulary

If a creature is hideous, is it clumsy or terrible-looking?

If a creature has armor, it is covered in strange hair or in a tough shell?

If a creature is extinct, it is a huge eater or long dead?

Is it true that a shell encases a turtle?

Is a serpent a form of fish?

If a seagull plunged towards the ocean, would it be diving downwards?


Vocabulary Strategy:

Context Clues:

As you read, you may come to a word you do not know. Look for clues in the context or words and sentences around the word. They may help you figure out the meaning of the unknown word.

Reread the sentence in which the unknown word appears. Does the author include a synonym, antonym, or other clue to the word’s meaning?

If you need more help, read the sentences around the one with the unknown word.

Put the clues together and thing of a logical meaning for the word. Does this meaning make sense in the sentence?

As your read “The Land of Imagination,” use the context to help you figure out the meanings of any unfamiliar words.


Genre: Science Fiction

Science fiction is imaginary writing based upon scientific ideas. Notice how the author uses vivid and exciting sights and sounds to create a make-believe world.


Preview and Predict

Read the title, look at the illustrations, and predict how the author might use facts in the story. Use your vocabulary in your discussion.


Guided Comprehension

What is the setting of this story?

Reread p. 588, paragraph 3. What causes the raft to be lifted out of the water and thrown a distance?

How do you think the adventurers are feeling at this point? Imagine yourself in this situation. How would you feel?

What do you think was Jules Verne’s purpose for writing this story?

How does the illustration help you understand the text on pp.590-591?

What caused the monsters to come close to the raft, then turn away.

Summarize the main events on p. 593, paragraphs 1 and 2.

To what does the narrator compare the size of the ichthyosaurus’s flaming red eyes?


Guided Comprehension Continued

Use context clues to determine the meaning of extinct on p. 595.

What information in the story seems to be based on scientific information?

Summarize the end of the story on pp. 596-597.

In the last sentence, the narrator wonders whether the ichthyosaurus will come back to destroy them. What do you predict will happen? Give your reasons.

Do you think the events in this story could happen in the real world? Give reasons to support your answers.


Author’s Purpose

There are four common reasons why authors write: to persuade, to inform, to entertain, and to express an idea.

So far, the story has been exciting and suspenseful. It makes me want to keep reading to find out what will happen next. This makes me think that Jules Verne wrote this story mainly to entertain readers.

Why might Jules Verne chose to tell this story in the form of a diary?


Fantasy in Science Fiction

Science fiction stories are a kind of fantasy because they tell about events that couldn’t happen or that haven’t happened yet.

Science fiction often contains scientific information that makes the fantasy elements more believable.

The elements of fantasy in science fiction have to do with technology rather than magic.

Reread the introductory paragraph on p. 587 and explain why this story is considered science fiction.

Does it tell about events that couldn’t happen or haven’t happened yet?

2. Does it contain scientific information that makes the fantasy believable?



In this story, Mrs. Cieco’s class learns about the layers of the Earth during a field trip to Mount Randall. Three students, Toby, Kenny, and Maria, travel through the Earth in a scientist’s machine, experiencing Earth’s layers first-hand.


PAGE 4 Why is it a special day?

PAGE 7 What are the five layers of the Earth?

PAGE 9 Why do the rock plates under the

continents move?

PAGE 10 What keeps the Earth’s inner core solid?

PAGE 13 What happened when Kenny and Toby

climbed to the top of the volcano?



For centuries, scientists have been puzzling over the composition of our planet. From Aristotle—who thought the Earth was solid—to the recent findings of scientists today, this book tells the story of the discovery of the Earth’s layers.


PAGE 4 What did Aristotle, the Greek philosopher, believe about the Earth?

PAGE 5 What did maps from the mid-16th century reveal?

PAGE 8 What did Neptunists believe?

PAGE 15 Why did German scientist Alfred Wegener believe that Africa and South America were once connected?

PAGE 16 What happened when scientists explored an underwater mountain chain?

PAGE 21 What happens when two tectonic plates collide?



The planet Earth today consists of seven continents separated by the world’s oceans. Evidence suggests, however, that hundreds of millions of years ago, the

continents were all connected. This book explains plate tectonics, the force that moves continents, and the ways that mountains are formed.


PAGE 4 What is the meaning of Pangaea?

PAGE 5 What is the name for the theory that explains how the continents shift and move?

PAGE 6 What made Alfred Wegener believe that South America and Africa might once have been connected?

PAGE 7 What caused scientists in the 1950s to change their understanding of how the Earth’s surface moves?

PAGE 13 What happens when an ocean floor pushes toward a landmass? Why?


Text features:

  • In textbooks, diagrams are sometimes used to explain important information.
  • Captions in pictures and diagrams add information.
  • Genre: Textbook
  • Textbooks are used in classrooms to teach facts, give information, and offer explanations in a specific subject area.
  • The information has been researched for accuracy.
  • The material in textbooks is deigned to help students learn and do well on tests.

How can a diagram help a reader understand the text?

What purpose do captions in diagrams and illustrations serve?

How do the diagram’s captions help you summarize?

Notice that causes and effects are clearly stated.


Additional Resources

Jefferson County Schools

Earth's Layers- game