Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs

Author: Ellen Vento
Lesson Plan:

Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs
Estimated Time:
A Compare/Contrast lesson where students use the book "Cloudy witha Chance of Meatballs" by Judi Barrett to practice the use of clear and precise language to demonstrate comprehension.
  • Listening / Speaking
    • Listening
    • Speaking
  • Reading
    • Analysis and Interpretation
    • Awareness of Print
    • Comprehension
    • Phonemic Awareness
    • Vocabulary Development
    • Word Identification
  • Science
    • Physical Science
  • Writing
    • Grammar and Usage
    • Punctuation and Spelling
    • Writing in Practice
Students will be able to demonstrate understanding of the compare and contrast strategy in modern fantasy through the story "Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs" by Judi Barrett.

Lesson Plan

Cloudy with a Chanceof Meatballs
Pre-requisite Knowledge
Students will know the four seasons and should be familiar with the concepts of weather that includes clouds, rain, snow, wind, storms, and tornadoes. Students must also be able to recognize the foods referred to in the story and reviewed if necessary.
Students will be introduced to this lesson with the reading of Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, by Judi Barrett. Prior to the reading teacher will ask students to look at the cover and make a prediction of what they think the story is about. Teacher will show visuals of umbrellas and ask students which one might be used in the town of Chewandswallow and which one might be used in real life.

Relevant Questions

"What do you think it would be like to live in a place where food really did come from the sky?"
"Would you like to live in a place like this? Why or why not?"
"How is the town of Chewandswallow different from our town?"

  • Students will gather together for the instruction and reading of Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs.
  • Teacher will display visuals and chart paper.
  • Questions will be asked periodically during the reading regarding the weather in the town of Chewandswallow.
  • Before the students are asked to brainstorm compare and contrast between Chewandswallow and a real town, a minilesson discussing the concept of compare and contrast will be taught using a chart.
  • Explain the students that we will now list all of the characteristics that are the same about the towns and all the characteristics that are different.
  • The teacher will call on volunteers to share their ideas with the class. As the students provide responses, the teacher will write them in the appropriate spaces on the chart.
  • Give every student a copy of the bulletin board pattern and have each child write about an imaginary town where odd things rained down from the sky.
  • Students who finish early will get an umbrella coloring page to complete.
Interdisciplinary Activity
During science the children will learn about health and nutrition. They will reflect on their own lives, what they eat, and what they do to stay healthy.
  • storybook Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs by Judi Barrett
  • markers
  • large easel pad
  • watch out for wacky weather bulletin board pattern sheets
  • umbrella coloring sheets
  • crayons
  • pencils
  • large oak tag umbrella cut out
  • real umbrella
Students' responses to the book that was read aloud in class. Observation of students' expression of ideas comparing and contrasting two towns. Students' written response to the bulletin board pattern page. Also, assess children's abililty to correctly identify and label illustrations and sentences as fantasy or realism.
Follow-up/ Enrichment Activities
  • Temperature Comparison
Have the students read the thermometer at the same time every day for the next two weeks and record the temperature on a sheet of paper. At the end of two weeks have the students help you plot the readings on a graph. Discuss the graph and determine which days had the highest and lowest readings. Discuss any trends in the temperature and the possible reasons for them. For example, you might notice that it's getting warmer or colder as the days progress.
  • Keep a Record
Students can keep a running record of what they ate for the school week. When completed, each student can create their own journal. The journals can be illustrated with the different foods and shared with partners.
  • Questions for further discussion
Students can discuss and write about problems which may have occurred as a result of no sanitation, oversized food, rotting food, etc.


Tell what you think the author is saying about people's responsibility toward their environment. Illustrate!