Meet Christian Robinson! Lesson Plan

Academic Standards


Reading Objective:

Children will sequence how illustrator Christian Robinson tells stories through pictures.


Literacy Focus:

author/illustrator study


ELA Skills:

key details, writing, vocabulary, sequencing


Page 4 Skill:

use visuals



illustrator, imagination, collage, sketches



RI.2.1, RI.2.4, RI.2.10, L.2.1, W.2.3, SL.2.3


Guided Reading Level:



Lexile Level:


Provide students with some background on books.

Build background knowledge (10 min.)

Watch our video “All Kinds of Books.” After children have finished watching the video, discuss the following questions:

  • What are books with made-up stories called? (fiction)
  • What are books about true things called? (nonfiction)
  • What is a new kind of book you would like to try? (Answers will vary.)

Preview vocabulary (3 min.)

Next, play the online vocabulary slideshow. This issue’s featured words are illustrator, imagination, collage, and sketches.

Set a purpose for reading (5 min.)

  • Pass out the issue, and discuss the cover. What do students think it would be like to work as an illustrator?
  • Next, read the As You Read prompt on page 2: “Think about the steps Christian takes to make a book.” Encourage children to think about this prompt as they read.

Read together (20 min.)

  • Pass out the Read and Think printable. Use it to check comprehension as you read the issue together, pausing to ask the questions.

Assessment: Reading Checkpoint (15 min.)

  • Pass out the Reading Checkpoint to review key concepts from the issue and assess students’ proficiency on key nonfiction reading skills.
  • Children can practice looking for books in a virtual library with our game Library Search and Find.

You can use our printable worksheets to focus on important ELA skills. Here’s how.

ELA Focus: Vocabulary (15 min.)

  • Use the Word Work printable to deepen students’ understanding of the words imagination and collage.

Editor’s Pick: Sequencing (15 min.)

  • The Words to Pictures skill sheet asks children to write the steps Christian takes to make a book, using the text in the article as a reference. Children can summarize each paragraph in the section, and then draw a picture of what each step looks like.

ELA Focus: Write and Draw (15 min.)

  • Christian calls his art studio his “making space.” The Your Making Space skill sheet invites students to create their own space to do what they love to do! First, they get to draw their space. Then, they name three items in the space and tell why they need each one. This is a wonderful creative exercise to boost critical-thinking skills.

 Here are two past issues you can use to extend your lesson on creators of picture books:

  • Mo Doesn’t Give Up!, September 2019. This issue profi les the author and illustrator of the Elephant and Piggy books, Mo Willems.
  • Good Work, David!, September 2017. This issue shows kids how the author and illustrator of No, David!, David Shannon, actually has great work habits. Yes, David!

You can find a higher-Lexile-level and a lower-Lexile-level version of the article online here:

  • Higher-Lexile level: 590L
  • Lower-Lexile level: 490L