When students do not know the difference between tattling and reporting, it can eat up instructional time and frustrate even the most experienced teacher. I like to spend a good chunk of time at the beginning of the year teaching and using examples to illustrate the difference. Today I want to share some ideas for using the book, A Bad Case of Tattle Tongue in the classroom to address tattling and reporting.
Julia Cook makes my job a little easier with her picture books. If you aren't familiar with A Bad Case of Tattle Tongue, here's what it's about:
After reading the story, we discuss the four tattling rules. Then I give the students some examples (some from the book) for a classroom discussion. Together we talk about each situation and determine whether it is tattling or reporting:
(This sorting activity is NOT included in the book companion, but you can grab it here.)
The next day we will revisit the story. This time my focus is on comprehension and vocabulary. I have these comprehension questions pre-cut and in a cup. Students can draw a question and then answer it.
We also discuss the vocabulary. Since I always work on a story retell at the beginning of the year, my students work on a retell at their seats as a follow-up. At the beginning of the year, I allow students to use a combination of pictures and words for their retell.
On the third day, I'm usually ready to have my students apply what they have learned with tattling vs. reporting and complete a writing extension. Usually this means giving my students a situation and having them give some advice on what should be done. This helps me gain insight into who gets it and who needs a little extra support. I added this craft for some of my fast finishers to go with it:
You can add your own writing page:
or use one of the pages from the pack:
You can find these resources and more in this picture book companion for A Bad Case of Tattle Tongue: