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Lesson Plan #: AELP-WCP0202
Submitted by: Kirstin Schultz
Email: tater15017@yahoo.com
School/University/Affiliation: University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown Date: September 19, 2000

Grade Level: 1, 2, 3


  • Language Arts/Writing (composition)
  • Language Arts/Literature/Children’s Literature

Duration: 45 minutes Description: This is a lesson based on the book, Frog and Toad Are Friends by Arnold Lobel. Each student writes a letter to a friend describing the strengths of the friendship. Students use a semantic web to organize their ideas.

Goals: Students will realize the importance of friendships and ways to strengthen friendships.

1. Students will be able to make predictions about the content of the story by examining the cover and title.
2. Students will be able to use a semantic web to organize information.
3. Students will be able to practice letter writing skills by writing a letter to a friend.


  • Frog and Toad Are Friends by Arnold Lobel
  • paper
  • pencils
  • blank semantic webs

Pre-reading Activities:
Ask students to close their eyes and think about one of their friends. Ask students to think of things that they like to do with their friends. Allow students to share some of their thoughts. Show students the cover of the book, Frog and Toad Are Friends . Read the title and the author together with the students. Ask students to make predictions about what they think the story will be about and the kinds of activities they think Frog and Toad will do together. Remind students to listen carefully to the story to see if their predictions are correct. Guided Instruction:
Follow the reading with a talk about. Ask questions such as:
How did Frog get Toad to wake up from his long nap?
Why did Toad give Frog a coat that had so many different buttons on it?
Why didn’t Toad want anyone to see him in the lake? Or swim?
When everyone was laughing at Toad’s bathing suit, what would you have done if you were in Frog’s place?
Why did Frog send Toad a letter when he sees him in person every day?

Using a semantic web, have students brainstorm different things that they like about one of their friends, along with activities that they like to do with them. Review the process of letter writing. Using ideas formed on their semantic webs, the students will compose a letter to a friend. In the letter they will tell their friend the things that they like about him/her and the things that they enjoy doing with the friend. If the students’ friends are in the same school, they can give the letters directly to them. If their friends don’t attend the school, they may mail the letters.

Concluding Set:
Ask for volunteers to read their letters to the class. Explain to children that they did this activity to show them one way to keep a friendship strong. One way to keep a friendship strong is by reminding the person how much his/her friendship means. By writing to their friends, the students are reminding themselves and their friends how important their friendship is.

Follow-Up Activity:
As a chance to integrate this lesson into science, develop a lesson on the difference between frogs and toads. Differences in color, size, and other physical characteristics can be discussed.

Computer Integration:
As a variation, have students type the final draft of their letters on the computer. After the students have completed the letters, they can either print out the letters and hand deliver them to a friend, or students may e-mail the letters.

Assessment: Listen to students’ responses during and after the story. Collect students’ semantic webs, and check students’ letters for completeness.