Narrator and Point of View

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SWBAT analyze a text for clues that help a reader identify point of view in diverse forms of literature.

Big Idea

Students experience war through a young girl's perspective. As students read the diary entry, they analyze for point of view and perspective.

Advanced Organizer

7 minutes

To engage my learners and make them active participants in their learning, I will ask two students to step into the hallway.  This will instantly alert the students and engage them into the lesson.  They will wonder and anticipate about what is going on. 

While outside the classroom, I will ask one student (the storyteller)  to think of something that recently happened to him or her.  It can be something funny, scary, or even just a normal event such as a trip to the mall.  For my students, I will pick two students who recently attended their first school dance.  I will ask the storyteller to describe one event that occurred at the dance to the other student (listening student) in the hallway.  Another way you could do this is to provide one student with a short narrative describing an event to read aloud.  This could be beneficial if you have students who are timid or too shy to share.  I am going to try to keep it authentic for this activity. 

I will go back into the classroom and have the listening student enter the classroom when he or she is done listening to the story.  Have the storyteller remain in the hall.  The listening student then repeats the story he or she heard in the hall.  Then, have the storyteller enter the room and share his or her story as it was told to the listening student. 

Discuss as a class how the two stories were similar and different.  Ask the students if you wanted more details, which person would you ask?  This will hopefully demonstrate the knowledge the storyteller has on the event because it happened to him/her.  This will highlight the main characteristic of first-person point of view.  Next, I would ask, if I wanted another opinion of what happened, who would I ask? Again, this will demonstrate the purpose of using third-person point of view. 

Because the students have prior knowledge of point of view, I will ask the students to identify which student represents first person, and which student told the story in third person.  This will reinforce the skill. I will have the students share their thoughts with their Shoulder Partners before sharing as a class.  This will help students process and explain their thoughts.  



7 minutes

To analyze text we are already familiar with, I will pass out the Collecting Point of View.  I will have the students work with their shoulder partners to analyze text, we have already read, for point of view.  This will be a quick review of pronouns used to develop point of view and it will also get the students thinking about why the author chose to use that particular point of view to tell the story.  Does it give more details? Does it allow for outside opinions? 

I will give the students 10-15 minutes to collect the points of view.  As they are working, I will circulate the room, working with my struggling students, monitoring and checking for understanding and reteaching if necessary. 

Once students have completed the activity, I will project the handout on to the board and fill it in as a class.  I will call on students to help me fill it in, discussing their responses.  I will pay particular attention to why the author used the point of view for each story.  How did that help the reader understand the author's purpose of the story? 

This will bridge our learning on author's purpose and connect the learning to developing point of view.  It really helps to create a bigger picture of literature. 

Guided Practice

45 minutes

To prepare for today's text, I will need to provide some background information.  The text I am using for today's lesson is from the book Zlata's Diary.  I am using the entries from March 30, 1992 until December 1993.  I am using a non-fiction piece so the students are exposed to more complex texts.  With the shift to Common Core, the students need to work towards analyzing a variety of texts.  Zlata's diary is a challenging text and it is a good selection to help the students start to see how point of view develops perspective. 

I will display the Background Information onto the board and read it aloud.  It is important for the students to know the setting this diary was written in.  Most 6th graders have little knowledge of war and are especially removed from the terrors of war.  Most of the 6th graders this year were born in the year 2001 or after that year.  What is our reality of terror, 9-11, is not their own.  It is important for the students to understand the setting so they get a feel for the intensity the author experienced. 

Once I read and discuss the background information, I will inform the students about their job as we read.  I want the students to continue to practice the skill of marking up the text.  For this particular selection, I will have the students mark any clues for point of view, as well as how the author feels about what is happening.  This will help us develop the author's perspective. 

This piece is an emotionally packed piece, so the discussion with the text will be important.  I do this piece more guided than independent because it is so emotionally packed. 

As we read the story aloud, I will project the story onto my Smartboard.  We will mark discuss and mark up the text together.  I will do this with the students until I feel they are understanding the story and have a feel for the narrator's experience.  Then, I will release the students to continue on their own. 

As they are working, I will be monitoring to check for understanding. Are they underlining clues for point of view and author's perspective?  Can they identify how the narrator feels about the topic? 

While they are reading, I will check with my struggling students.  I may pull a small group to continue reading aloud and guiding. 

Next, we will work to answer some questions about the selection. 

Independent Practice

10 minutes

After reading the story of Zlata and her experience in Bosnia, the students will work to independently analyze the information we marked as we read.  After guiding them through the text, I want the students to work through analyzing the text for point of view.  With the implementation of Common Core, there will be a shift in instruction.  Part of that shift is to have the students work independently with text.  

I will pass out the Questions that go along with the story and have the students work to complete.  I will provide support if needed, but really encourage them to use their notes and struggle through the task.  Many students give up if it is not easy.  They do not realize the importance of perseverance and struggling through a problem.  I want to encourage them to make this a practice.  Giving them the guidance I've provided, the students should be able to independently analyze the text.  If they are struggling and still not successful, I will reteach, provide more guidance, or prompt. 

I will collect the handout to check for understanding and use as an assessment piece. 


7 minutes

Students will complete the closure slips.  The Closure Slip is a quick way for the student and I to assess learning.  It allows the students to process what they learned today, share any concerns as well as successes they had.  It allows me to understand where I need to take the learning from this point on.  Do I need to re-teach? Can I move on?  It is a quick, easy, assessment that is beneficial to both my student and me. 

Today's questions "How can a reader's experience change with point of view" really asks the students to think about how influential writing can be and how much power words actually hold.  I am anticipating the students to think along the lines of how we make believe one thing to be true, because of "who" saw it and "who" is writing.  I am sure they will connect back to the Advanced Organizer, which is fine!