Stocking Up On Close Reads

If you enjoy using close reading, this post has a collection of links you'll enjoy for December. Five freebies included.

Who is a fan of close reading? I am, and I wanted to highlight a collection of free options you can use with your students. I am such a fan of the close reading process, and I am really hoping it will make a difference for my students in May when we do our state testing. Honestly though, it's not a strategy for testing alone.  It is helping my students learn how to study, how to think about their reading, and how to determine what pieces of information are worthy of remembering.

Gingerbread Tradition

The first one on my list is this great article from The Sweetest Thing.  I just did my Gingerbread Thematic Thursday linky yesterday, and sure enough, I came across this freebie.  I have purchased several bundles from The Sweetest Thing since I'm trying to help my kids review history and science content while we work on reading skills.  This freebie is best for grades 4-6 and offers three versions of the passage.  I will be using it next week with my students.

Christmas Around the World

Next on my list is this great holiday read from 24/7 Teacher. It is about holiday traditions in the United States and would work beautifully with a Christmas Around the World theme.  I used it this week with a second grade tutorial student.  It includes a graphic organizer and questioning page.  It's perfect for guided reading.

St. Nicholas Night

St. Nicholas Night Reader's Theater and Close Reading ToolkitChildren love doing Reader's Theater, and this close reading set from Erin Beers will keep your kids engaged and learning.  It too would fit a Christmas Around the World theme, and it includes the script, preselected vocabulary, and two response pages...something for each read.

Holidays Around the World-Italy

FREEBIE Holidays Around the World Close Read SampleWell, you've read about traditions in the US and England. This freebie includes traditions from Italy.  The set focuses on visualizing, questioning, and has a written response.  I would say the passage is best for third grade. It does include religious information, so usage in public schools may be questioned.  I am sharing it since it is a thorough close read set and is nicely done.

The last close reads (two since I couldn't limit it to one) I want to share come from Stephanie McConnell (Poinsettias) and Ashleigh (Christmas in the United States). I think Poinsettias would work well for third grade, and when I use it, I believe I will increase the number of questions to go with the article.  I love how Stephanie has students color code the information needed as text evidence.  I have my students do this with our articles.  Ashleigh's set includes both questions and a written response.

 The Poinsettia Close Reading (Rainbow Comprehension) Freebie     FREE Christmas in the United States - Close Reading

Enjoy your weekend, and if you download these great Close Reads, be sure to leave some feedback love to say thank you! Until next time, happy reading!


  1. I absolutely love your products! They are invaluable during my guided reading lessons.

    1. Thanks Debbie! I can't take credit for these sets though, but I will certainly love using them. If you don't have the Jan Brett bundle, it is a good buy. I just went through every unit and added craftivities to some. There are at least 15 pages per unit with exception of The Three Snow Bears. I think that one is twelve.

  2. Thank you so much for compiling these resources! They will be perfect for the next two weeks to tie into our holidays unit.
    An Adventure in Literacy

    1. Jen-I'm looking forward to reading your post at Lit Land. You are very welcome about the Close Reads. I'm a huge fan, so I thought I'd pass it on.

  3. The math students in Title 1 intervention LOVE bump--so we've been playing Gingerbread Bump!

  4. Thank you so much! I love your products. Thanks for your generosity and ideas!

    Tina B.

    1. Any time, Tina. Be sure to follow my Facebook page. I think it's a little easier to keep it up. :-)


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