In Unit 2, students continue their study of trees while learning how to read and write opinion pieces. Students read, write, and discuss the module guiding question--"How and why are trees important to us and our communities?"--focusing on the communities aspect of the question. In the first half of the unit, students read A Tree Is Nice by Janice May Udry and practice naming an author's opinion or point and identifying the reasons the author gives to support it. Students explore different places in a community where trees might be planted through observation of pictures and written responses in the Enjoying Trees Journal, Part II. In Lesson 4, students complete Part I of the Unit 2 Assessment by listening to portions of A Tree Is Nice read aloud and completing a selected response activity to identify reasons the author gives to support the opinion "A tree is nice."
In the second half of the unit, students read Mama Miti by Donna Jo Napoli to continue gathering information about why people plant trees. They compare and contrast the reasons and information from Mama Miti and A Tree Is Nice. They then use the information gathered from both of these texts to compose an opinion piece in preparation for Part II of the Unit 2 Assessment. In Lesson 10, students complete Part II of the Unit 2 Assessment by composing an opinion piece in response to the question "In your community, where would you plant a tree and why?" Throughout the unit, students also engage in a variety of discussion protocols, regular independent writing, and language activities to support their growing understanding of opinions and reasons in order to successfully craft their own opinion statement with an accompanying reason.