Connect To the World and Don't use 'Slug'gish Words

7 teachers like this lesson
Print Lesson


SWBAT connect to ideas in a story and acknowledge the character's point of view.

Big Idea

Use voice to show a character's point of view!



I originally used 'tone' and 'schema' in this lesson, but have realized that this was a bit too much new vocabulary. When I teach this lesson again, I'll use 'point of view' as the main focus and touch on 'figurative language', but keep the lesson limited to the main focus.


**I added this worksheet to this lesson, because it was similar to the worksheet and activities that we completed in the last lesson. The kids needed a bit more practice making connections, and the worksheet was an easy way to see if they could do this.

Let's Get Excited!!

5 minutes

Underlined words below are lesson vocabulary words that are emphasized and written on sentence strips for my Reading & Writing word wall. I pull off the words off the wall for each lesson, helping students understand this key 'reading and writing' vocabulary can be generalized across texts and topics.  The focus on acquiring and using these words is part of a shift in the Common Core Standards towards building students’ academic vocabulary.  My words are color coded ‘pink’ for literature/’blue’ for reading strategies/’orange’ for informational text/'yellow' for writing/’green’ for all other words)


Get students engaged:  

  • “I brought a movie today about a cool animal – Take a look…”
  • Show video-don’t use the sound – I just wanted them to see the slugs – My students LOVED it!


Bring students to the same point in learning

  • “Can anyone connect with the idea of slugs?
  • "Let’s  think about life from their point of view.  What would be hard for a slug to do? Use your slug voice – (demo) – “I can’t make it all the way up that rock!  What else?” (prompt with climb up on a big rock, see thing up high, find good food)
  • “What if you were a slug in school and you were trying to read…. What would be hard to do?”


Teachers' Turn

20 minutes

Discuss connecting and point of view:

  • Reference back to your connections - Connecting helps us use imagery, ask questions, and understand the feelings of the characters.” 
  • Show the cover - "Do you have any connections with this story?  boy is 7-8 years old, learning to read, like slugs....."Wow lots of connections!!”
  • "To connect better, we can think about the point of view of the character. What are they thinking?  We can show this by using a voice."
  • "We have talked about different kinds of connections before. Here's a Kinds of connecting chart that we created over several lessons.


Bring in figurative language

I added some figurative language here because I want to expose the students to some of these phrases, but not teach to them explicitly. Second grade students need to hear these phrases used in a variety of situations with multiple examples to really be able to internalize the meanings, so I used them in this lesson. 

  • "On the board, I have written some figurative language'.  As I read, listen of these words."
  • "We can talk about what they mean- the context or words in the story will help us figure that out."
  • Refer to phrases on the board.
    • A slug will LOSE INTEREST   
    • “BE PATIENT”
    • “Your slug NEEDS TIME to climb…”
    • “SPOT them RIGHT AWAY.”
    • “SOUND OUT” words
    • “Show him the WHOLE WIDE WORLD”


Focus on a distinction between deep connections and shallow ones. As Common Core Stae Standards demand, this lesson is helping students learn how to make deep, relevant, text-based connections. See other lessons in this unit for more ideas on how to encourage students to shift away from meaningless connections that don't have much to do with the text itself towards connections that are steeped in text evidence and help students actually understand the text on a deeper level.


  • Here are some examples of point of view... Read and use a 'slug' or 'bug' voice
  •  “A slug needs a good book because he will LOSE INTEREST"
  • “Your slug NEEDS TIME to climb…”

Students Take a Turn

15 minutes

Explain task:

  • “I’m passing out slug & narrator cards.  The narrator in this book has a special voice – he/she uses TONS of figurative language, which adds a silly tone to the story.  Can you connect to a time when you were silly?"   Pause   "Try out your 'narrator voice'...."
  • "The slug speaks....slowly and sluggish - try out your 'slug voice' ...."


Guided practice

  • “Now we’re ready to read the book. I’ll prompt you to read your part. Use your slug and narrator voices."
  • Compliment the voices that show ‘point of view’.
  • As you read, write down connections that the kids have with the characters/book.  Record these connections on the chart on the board and kids copy these on their worksheet.
  • I also pointed out the figurative language as I read it and we discussed the meaning as a group.
  • This is what the completed whiteboard looked like after we read the story.


Common Core State Standard RL.2.6 explicitly says that the students need to speak in a different voice for each character, demonstrating their acknowledgement of point of view.  My students love to act out stories and they learn so much more by ‘doing’ rather than just ‘listening’.

Apply What You've Learned

15 minutes

Explain project:

  • Students create a picture showing ‘point of view’.  What does a slug do and what would be hard for it?"
  • Pass out a brown square of paper and a ‘speech bubble’.  
  • Use one of the phrases on the board to show the slug’s point of view.  
  • This is what my project sample looked like from the whiteboard.
  • Here is how I introduced the student project:
  • Give kids time to work develop a setting for their slug, what challenges it would face, and what the 'point of view' would be for the slug.


Students share their projects:

  • Students share their ideas, when done.
  • Reference that there are different points of view.  "Second graders can understand that people have different points of view and we should respect how others look at things."  Encourage students to share and explain their point of view as they share)
  • Here's a few pictures of their work: student sample 1 and student sample 2.


Scaffolding and Special Education: This lesson can be scaffolded up or down, depending on students’ abilities.

Students with academic challenges may need prompting with the meanings of the figurative language. I drew some ideas on the white board and talked through with them what their ideas were.

For students with great academic ability, I would expect them to have a much better idea about the meanings of the figurative language and call on them to give you an example of how they could use it in another context.  They should also be expected to make a connections with the story about point of view. Instead of just choosing an idea from the board (that you have for struggling students) I would challenge them to be creative and think of their own idea.