Comprehension-Based Reader™
Mario realizes that the banana plantation where his mother works has a sinister side when people start becoming seriously ill.

Level 3 and up / Novice High — Intermediate Low

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After divorcing, Mario’s mother must uproot the family to find work. Mario struggles with the thought of moving until he experiences the benefits of his mother’s new job at a fruit company. His new life includes an almost unlimited supply of bananas and a series of new adventures. However, Mario develops a great distaste for bananas once he sees the REAL harvest of the banana plantations.

This Comprehension-based™ reader, ‘Bananas’, strategically weaves high-frequency language structures into a compelling story. Even upper-level language students need repeated exposure to language structures in order to fully acquire them; that’s why Fluency Matters’ intermediate readers maintain a high-frequency factor of high-level language structures, thus helping learners progress beyond typical proficiency levels.


  • Level 3 and up
  • Past tense
  • Unique word count: 275
  • Total word count: 6700
  • Page count: 72
  • Audio recording embedded in the Student and Teacher Bundles
  • A 400+ page Teacher's Guide is also available!
Start planning how you can incorporate Bananas into your classroom.
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Bananas Teacher's Guide

Our Teacher's Guides are loaded with resources to enrich the teaching and learning experience.

  • In Every Chapter:

    Vocabulary, cognates, comprehension questions, blooming comprehension questions, quiz, pre-reading discussion questions slideshow

    Pre-Reading Unit:

    Bananarama Centers, Map Talk, A Bunch of Hunches, Quite the Character, Beyond the Text: United Fruit, Anticipation Guide, Banana Timeline

    Cross-curricular Connections:

    Pre-Reading: Map Talk - Geography

    Pre-Reading: Standard and United Fruit reading - History

    Chapter 3: Women in the Banana Industry - Sustainable Development Goals

    Chapter 4: Bananas y Manzanas - Math

    Chapter 5: Effects of Pesticides on Health - Medicine

    Chapter 8: Stages of Grief - Psychology

    Chapter 9: Kids Who Make a Difference - History

    Chapter 10: Ecuador vs. Banana Growers - History

    Chapter 10: Voluntourism - Social Justice

    Chapter 10: Call to Action - Social Justice

    Epilogue: La United Fruit Co. - Literature


    Slideshows: Frutas exóticas, Bolsas plásticas, APREFLOFAS, Derrames

    Comunidades bananeras, Banana zipline exclusive video, Dos gobiernos únicos, Todo sobre las bananas, Meet Eric: the REAL Mario!

    Features and Highlights:

    Prep 4 Success Unit!

    Can-do Statements, Reader’s Theater Scripts, Discussion Thursday, Sequencing Activities, Order Up!, Picasso of Plates, Emoji Theater, The Splits , Which Sitch is Which?, Eventful , Marker Partner Game, Two Truths and a Lie, Quip Lash, Cucharas, Curtain Call, Move or Keep?, 6 of One, Half Dozen of the Other, Toma uno, por favor, Yellow Brick Road retell, Numbered Heads Together, ¡Alerta!, Find the Faker!, Musical Chairs Retell, Antes, después o durante , Anticipation Guide: Revisited

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Research Based and ACTFL Aligned

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