I usually start each theme by asking my students what they already know about the topic, also known as their schema! It's great to see their little minds at work! You can do this in either a small group or as a whole group activity. I made a sheet for the children to illustrate and hopefully label some spider schema.
Once we have read a lot of books and gathered a ton of facts, I will have each student write a new fact they learned about spiders. You can do this in your writing center or research center! I also made a sheet for this activity.
Click on the first image below to visit my blog and grab your copies! The clip art and borders are from DJ Inkers and Scrappin Doodles and the font is MTF fonts.