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Hi Teachers!

Welcome to your December issue. Scroll down to get a summary of each article and its support materials. Just click on the article to get the videos, quizzes, lesson plans, and activity sheets that go with it. Enjoy!


Narrative Nonfiction

The Day the President Was Shot

This is the riveting story of one of America’s worst tragedies: the assassination of President John F. Kennedy 50 years ago. The article is paired with a poem from 1963.

Featured Skill: Identifying key ideas and details

Video: Behind the Scenes

Audio: Hear the article and poem read aloud

Activity Sheets:

  • Key Ideas and Details (two levels)

  • Video Discussion Questions

  • Close-Reading and Critical-Thinking Questions

  • Vocabulary: Definitions and Practice

  • Quiz

  • Read, Think, Explain: Identifying Nonfiction Elements (two levels)

  • Contest Entry Form

Paired Texts

What Are You Afraid Of? and Conquering Fear

We’ve paired an informational text about phobias with an Ethiopian folktale about a boy who sets out on a journey to conquer his fears.

Featured Skill: Making connections across genres

Activity Sheets:

  • Making Connections

  • Close-Reading and Critical-Thinking Questions

  • Themed Vocabulary

  • Quiz

  • Contest Entry Form

Debate/Essay Kit

Are Trampolines Too Risky?

Trampolines are backyard favorites, but they cause tens of thousands of injuries each year. Do the risks of using trampolines outweigh the benefits?

Key Skills: Supporting an argument; central ideas and supporting details

Activity Sheet:

  • Guided Writing: The Argument Essay

You Write It

Recipe for a Great Boy Band

Students write a proposal describing a boy band of their own creation, using details from our infographic to explain why their new band is sure to be a hit.

Key Skills: Understanding visual text; structuring a paragraph; central idea and supporting details

Activity Sheets:

  • Guide to “You Write It” Activity

  • Model Text for “You Write It” Activity

  • Contest Entry Form


Pandora’s Box

Our exciting play is a new adaptation of the classic Greek myth, paired with a short argument essay on why curiosity is an important character trait.

Featured Skills: Point of view and theme

Bonus! From the Scope archive:

  • The Monster in the Cave (play)

  • “Cyclops: My Side of the Story” (video)

Activity Sheets:

  • Integrate Knowledge and Ideas: “A Look at Curiosity”

  • Close-Reading and Critical-Thinking Questions

  • Vocabulary: Definitions and Practice

  • Quiz

  • Literary Elements and Devices

  • Contest Entry Form

The Lazy Editor

Could You Be a Hero?

Students correct grammatical errors and revise sloppy writing in a short nonfiction article about an amazing teen hero as well as new research on how anybody can
become a hero.

Key Skills: Conventions of standard English; revision

Activity Sheets:

  • Maintaining Consistent Verb Tense

  • Varying Sentence Structure

  • Rambling and Run-on Sentences

  • You’re vs. Your


Grammar Stinks!

Students practice the correct usage of number and amount while learning about three of the animal world’s smelliest species.

Key Skill: Conventions of standard English

Activity Sheet:

  • Number vs. Amount


Download All Activities

Get all the activity sheets for this issue in one click. Note: These activities are print-only and do not include lesson plans, videos,
or interactive activities.

Teacher’s Guide

Misplaced your T.G.? Click here to download a PDF. Note that the URL for the answer-key page has been removed.

Crossword Puzzle

A fun way to test comprehension of the entire issue.