This lesson incorporates technology by searching websites for information, cooperative learning groups, summarizing, and contains a high degree of rigor which may be differentiated as the need arises. Paired students may substitute for groups depending on availablity of computers in your classroom. The story may be above lower level readers without scaffolding, so adjust your instruction accordingly.
Note to Teachers: Permission from the website author was granted for use of the site and its products for use in my classroom. Prior to introducing this lesson to your students, you should contact the author either via the website or the facebook page that was set up as a companion to the website. Rigor has been built into this lesson, but you may need to differentiate instruction as the response level will vary. The lesson is designed for collaborative work groups, but may be used for whole class instruction, pair share, or individual work.
Options: Read-Aloud for first part of story or an online reading tool that will give some pictorial images. This is one I suggest: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iT45SWUERkE
Prior to reading, students should be informed about how the language has changed since the story was written and that many words may be unfamiliar. If the story from the website is used, then a number of archaic words and phrases will be highlighted. Students should be encouraged to circle other words not highlighted. The lesson is designed for self-discovery rather than advising students to look for specific ironies and plotlines.
Not all words will be found on the website http://www.poestories.com, so students may need to use context clues to figure them out, however, teacher input is suggested in order to decrease the level of frustration. As an alternative to using the wordlist on the website, the actual story can be utilized. You should have one available computer for each group for maximum effectiveness. A handwritten list of words is optional. Writing meanings on their copies of the story as margin notations by the words is strongly recommended.
Students were very engaged in this lesson, which encompassed 3 class periods. For those of you with blocks, you should allow the lesson to spill over for a second day. Debriefing once all summaries have been completed is encouraged. A rubric follows the lesson. You may elect to give a participation grade in addition to the grading of the summary. Please note that this story may be somewhat confusing to lower level readers. Some details may need to be provided.
Feel free to alter the lesson based on the configuration of your individual classroom. By designating a specific person to begin the reading in each group, it gives direction once the group reading commences. Have fun!
NOTE: This is now a Power Point.
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