Watercress Activities

Watercress activities engage students in writing and speaking skills as they reflect and discuss the author’s purpose, changes in character, and make connections. The diverse set of activities are great for differentiated instruction, and support English Language Arts and Social Studies.

Novel Effect

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39 pages

Grades PreK-5


Immerse students in learning about culture, heritage, and family with low and no-prep Watercress activities. Engage them in Social Studies skills as they learn about watercress and discuss traditional meals. They’ll also practice English Language Arts skills as they research, sequence the story, and define vocabulary. Encourage critical thinking skills with activities to analyze themes, outcomes, author’s purpose, and quotes from the text.

As a result of the included activities, students will be able to:

  • trace letters.
  • read and respond to informational text(s).
  • research watercress.
  • write a recipe including watercress.
  • write about 5 senses related to the story.
  • sequence the story.
  • determine the main idea and details. 
  • write about cause and effect.
  • write about traditional meals.
  • define story vocabulary.
  • answer comprehension questions. 
  • make connections.
  • analyze the theme.
  • determine the author’s purpose.
  • speaking skills: respond to discussion questions.
  • writing skills: respond to writing prompts.
  • create tableaux scenes from the book.
  • learn about their family’s history.

These activities can be used by the whole group, at stations or centers, or provide student choice. They’re perfect for differentiation and focusing on specific learning goals and skills. 

💙 Looking for more book activities that celebrate culture and heritage? Amplify learning with these novel ideas!

💙After downloading the Watercress activities, read the book with the soundscape in your Novel Effect app!

About the Book

A young girl is driving with her immigrant parents as they stop to pick watercress on the side of the road. The girl is embarrassed at first and doesn’t understand why they don’t just buy it at a grocery store. While picking, her mother shares a story of her family foraging for fresh food. Through this experience, she learns about the power of sharing memories, and how our heritage shapes us.  

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