Recognizing Plot or Not

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SWBAT identify how the characters actions contribute to the plot of the story.

Big Idea

How do character's actions and motivations drive the stories events?


We have been reading a really great story in one of my guided reading groups. The story is Mighty Jackie" by Marissa Moss. The Guiding Reading level of this book is M, the DRA level is 24, and the grade level equivalence is 3.2. This book is a good book to use with students reading on a 3rd grade level. My students know that I love baseball so I have quite a few books about baseball, but I let them know that this book is special because it is a true story about a girl who played baseball. We will work with this story for a few days so I decided to have the students do some Close Reads of the story. We will take a look at how characters emotions and actions contribute to the plot in a story.

Before Reading

5 minutes

I meet with five of my students who are reading on this level in a Guided Reading group. Before students begin reading I have them think about things that characters do in a story. Students shared their ideas. After introducing the story and giving the students some background information on the main character, I had students take a quick look through the story. Students were given a response sheet to jot down their thoughts while looking through the story. I told students to think about what they predict the character is going to do in this story. We discussed quickly students thoughts.

During Reading

10 minutes

Next, I asked students to read the first seven pages. While students read, I asked them to think about some questions that i listed on their response sheet. During reading, students were asked to pay attention to what they noticed about Jackie the main character and how they thought this would affect the events in the story. While students read, I listen to a few read and scaffold based on students needs. I stop some students periodically and have them explain to me any thing they noticed about Jackie that might have an effect on the events in the story.

After Reading

5 minutes

During this part of the lesson, we look at what students have gathered from the text in regards to our focus question. We have a brief and I mean brief discussion about Jackie and what students think of her. I start by asking students what kind of character or person is Jackie based on what we've read so far. Next I have students answer the focus question on their response sheet. I quickly have students share their response to the focus question and provide evidence that helps them draw their conclusion.