Theme: Teamwork / Determination / Training
Quick Summary: Dusty Whittemore faces several challenges and below-freezing weather during the Junior Iditarod race in Alaska. He is an experienced racer and knows his dogs well. He uses what he knows about their personalities to his advantage during the arduous race. At the halfway point, after seven hours of racing, he has a significant lead and is able to care for his dogs before the next leg of the race. Two tangles, a snowmobile collision, and a run-in with a moose are no match for the skill of Dusty and his dog sled team. They cross the finish line first, a sweet victory that will replace the disappointment of coming in fourth the year before.
Vocabulary Strategy Focus
USE SENTENCE AND WORD CONTEXT TO DETERMINE MEANING: Look at clues in sentence or paragraph to help find the meaning.
MULTIPLE MEANINGS OF WORDS: Several words in this selection have multiple meanings ( hide, run, leaf, etc.) Readers will use context clues to determine the correct definition.
_____________ (student choice from story)
Reading Strategy Focus
PREVIEW and PREDICT for PRE-READING: Through a picture walk, readers will predict what the selection is about and also using knowledge that students have about non-fiction writing.
READING AHEAD: Experienced readers will read ahead to find information to help them better understand what they are reading.
IDIOMS: The author uses several idioms to create a lively and friendly tone. An idiom is a group of words that combine together to mean something different from what the words mean on their own. Examples from this story: "run smack into" and "paid off."
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