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How to use Storyworks with any scope and sequence

We know that to be successful readers in the age of Common Core and other higher-level standards, students need to master certain key skills. That’s why we’ve created our Core Skills Workout. With every issue of Storyworks, you’ll get a series of activities to go along with our major nonfiction feature and our shorter nonfiction paired texts, as well as our fiction feature and play. These activities will help students “bulk up” in the skills needed to become strong, analytical readers of all kinds of nonfiction texts. They’ll support your reading program no matter what your scope and sequence.

For nonfiction, we’ve included:

  • Using nonfiction text features (RI.7)

  • Summarizing (RI.1, RI.2, RI.3)

  • Determining main idea and supporting details (RI.1, RI.2)

  • Making inferences (RI.1, RI.3)

  • Identifying text evidence (RI.1)

  • Analyzing two texts (RI.1, R1.9)

  • Text structures (RI.5)

All of these key skills will be reinforced between our two nonfiction features. Summarizing, determining main idea and supporting details, text evidence, and making inferences are differentiated; you’ll find two versions of these activity sheets to help all readers meet challenging standards.

For fiction, we’ve included:

  • Character (RL.3)

  • Plot (RL.3)

  • Setting (RL.3)

  • Theme (RL.2, RL.9)

  • Inference (RL.1)

  • Author's craft (RL.4, RL.5, RL.6)

All of these key skills will be reinforced between our fiction feature and play.

Here are some ways you can use our Core Skills Workout:

  • Focus on one or two skills. Have students complete the activities for building those skills with both our major nonfiction feature and our nonfiction paired texts, or our fiction and play.

  • Use all of the Core Skills activities for one of our articles for a comprehensive skills introduction or review.

  • As skills arise in your scope and sequence, choose the activities that support your teaching goals.

  • Choose higher-level or lower-level versions of activities for your whole class, or distribute the appropriate version to individual students. Both versions will help students master the same skills.

Don’t forget, the Core Skills Workout is in addition to all the other activities you get with Storyworks features: vocabulary, quizzes, close-reading and critical-thinking questions, featured-skill activities, and more.

Click here to find the Core Skills Workout activities (and more!) for this issue.

We’d love to hear your thoughts about our Core Skills Workout!

E-mail our Education Editor, Rebecca Leon, at