Developed by Mark Weakland, this Witch of Blackbird Pond Literature Unit Plan consists of ten core 60 to 70 minute lessons and three supplemental lessons that make use of an Exploration Board.
The purpose of this integrated focus unit is to develop language arts skills through multiple patterns of practice. More specifically, students working through this unit will demonstrate oral reading fluency, use metacognitive reading strategies that lead to deeper levels of thinking and greater levels of text comprehension, write in order to communicate ideas, opinions and information pertaining to the story, and speak and listen to one another in small and large group settings.
Included in this plan are comprehension questions, homework assignments, ideas for providing enrichment, a test, assessment options, project-based learning options with rubrics, graphic organizers, state standards, lesson objectives suitable for special education students, worksheets, vocabulary lists, and much more! An Exploration Board, which is a template for a bulletin board and/or handout, is included. The Exploration Board serves as a unit preview, a menu of assessment, vocabulary and project-learning options, and a way an additional way to organize and teach the unit.
A romantic tale of historical fiction, The Witch of Blackbird Pond is an excellent choice for any fifth, sixth or seventh grade teacher interested in teaching reading skills along with historical concepts and literacy themes. Historical facts and concepts are secondary but nonetheless important to this unit plan. In this unit students will learn information about the mid-17th century European settling of America, as well as explore, through the lens of history, themes of honesty, friendship, and prejudice. These themes still resonate with modern day life.