New! Oliver Twist
In this language arts worksheet, 5th graders will read a portion from "Oliver Twist." Students are then asked to write their thoughts as to what life would be like to live as an orphan.
Character Attributes in Writing
Third graders analyze the importance of characters in fiction writing and performances. For this theatre lesson, 3rd graders identify the important characteristics of a fictional character and how to portray a character through many different physical and psychological choices. Students act out characters for their classmates and critique their own performances.
Third graders learn the basic elements of art and develop an appreciation for art. In this ten-lesson unit, 3rd graders explore how to analyze art objectively, and try their hand at creating original art.
Horse Character: Ceramics Lesson
Animals oftentimes elicit various characteristics which make them symbolic or representative of human feeling, action, or emotion. The class creates horse characters out of clay to show character action and symbolism. This is a great project to use in conjunction with a lesson on personification, character development, or even verbs. A verb is an action and each child's creation can exemplify a motive and an action.
What a Character! Comparing Literary Adaptations
What do Robert Downey Jr., Basil Rathbone, Jeremy Brett, Fritz Weaver, Roger Moore, Benedict Cumberbatch, and Daffy Duck have in common? Why, it’s elementary, my dear Watson! They all have portrayed Sherlock Holmes. Literary detectives launch an investigation of how varying portrayals of a character influence a drama. The approach detailed here could be used with a wide range of literature. From Romeo and Juliet to The Great Gatsby, your sleuths will be engaged in the search for clues that reveal how who done it changes everything.
Fictional Narrative With a Twist
Show your young writers first-hand how adding personal experiences to fictional stories can make them more exciting and believable. In groups, your class will take turns adding their summer experiences to a collective fictional story, taking care to maintain fluency of characters and plot (two Common Core standards). Classes of all ages will undoubtedly enjoy what at first may seem like a very juvenile activity. Yet that's the beauty of this activity, its level will adjust to the level of your writers.
Yellow Bird and Me
Upper elementary artists create works which demonstrate an understanding of the many elements of theater and the visual arts. This four-day plan combines many wonderful aspects of visual, musical, and theatrical arts into one very engaging and rich educational experience. Some worksheets which are embedded in the plan will help you to implement the lesson quite effectively. Very good!
Does Art Imitate Life?
Write what you know, sound advice for any writer and something many famous authors are known to have done. Use these materials to explore how Shakespeare's life influenced his plays. This resource is packed with readings, video segments, and graphic organizers that will allow your class to gather and organize textual evidence on this subject, culminating in a written opinion piece. Although much of the resource focuses on Shakespeare and his play The Tempest, there is also a link to a website containing biographical information on a wide range of authors so you can adapt this instructional activity to the author and works of your choice. Note: See the Lesson Activities page for instructional activity procedure.
Analyze a Character's Thoughts, Actions, and Words
Authors use specific techniques to develop characters. Ask your class to do some sleuthing into "A Pair of Silk Stockings" to figure out how Kate Chopin put together Mrs. Sommers. The video starts with a brief review of direct and indirect characterization and then models how to use a character web to record textual details about Mrs. Sommers, with the final goal of composing a brief character summary. Class members can follow along using the provided graphic organizer. Make sure your class has read the story before beginning this character analysis. The additional materials are definitely worth a peek!
Art as Advocacy for Social Change
“Humanscape No.65” by Melesia Casas and Ester Hernandez’s “Sun Maid Raisins” launch a study of how works of art can advocate for social change. After examining these two works and discussing the human rights issues raised, class members are encouraged to create their own advocacy graphic. Learning links, reflections, service opportunities, and worksheets are included in the richly detailed plan.
Lesson: Younger Than Jesus: Understanding, Looking at, Making Abstract Art
Before the class makes abstract art, they see contemporary examples and analyze them. They look at art made by abstract artists under the age of 33 then use similar techniques to create an interesting collection of their own. The lesson spans five sessions and includes discussion questions, art resources, vocabulary, and creative projects.
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