The Polar Express rolled into town at Academy Street Elementary School in late December, calling aboard the school’s first-grade students for a fun and unique English language arts assignment.
After having their tickets received by “conductor” and music teacher Jim Cesare and Principal Kerry Vann, the students gathered in the cafeteria to listen as Ms. Vann read aloud the familiar holiday tale. The beautiful pictures from the story were projected on a white screen in the room in order for the students to better visualize the story’s messages. Just as in the book, the students were treated to a cup of hot cocoa and a snack after the read-a-loud was complete.
As an in-class follow-up activity, the students compared the written story to its movie counterpart by creating a Venn diagram that illustrated the similarities and differences between the two formats. They also completed a writing assignment that focused on their experiences and the messages of the book.