I start by reviewing what we already know about fables from our chart.
I review that in fables, the animal characters often talk and act like people. Most often, the main character makes a mistake that helps him or her learn a lesson. Fables usually end with a moral, which is a statement that sums up the lesson in the story.
Objective - I tell students that today they are going to get the opportunity to write their own fables and teach their readers a moral lesson through their animal characters.
I will model completing a guided worksheet by creating two characters and a moral and then selecting different students to give me an animal, setting, problem, 2nd problem and a ending.
Then as a class we do a quick write using the worksheet to create an outline for a fable from these student-selected text features.
I then use the worksheet to tell them a fable story. It will take too long to write so, I tell the fable orally.
These fables can be a bit funny but it is a great way for students to see how easy it is to write a story when you have an organized plan. This highlights the point that I want to make:
Good Writers: first need to think, then need to plan, next need to write and finally need to edit and revise
Students begin planning their fables on their worksheets and I circulate to help support students with ideas and provide structure for their writing when needed.
Students are not allowed to write their fables until they have completed their organizers. Then they can write their final copies or use scratch paper/ back of outlines to write their draft copies. Final copies should be written on their student worksheets referring to the rubric to ensure a high score.
Students evaluate and edit/revise their writing before they are allowed to illustrate their fables.
I will set a writing timer to motivate the slower thinkers/writers for 20 minutes but sometimes I need to add extra minutes depending on how the writing is going.
If the whole class finishes early, I have them peer edit and revise their writing in teams. If only a few students finish before the timer goes off, I usually respond to those students on an individual basis giving them the "right to illustrate" after they double check their writing against the rubric.
An other option to to allow early finishers to read their fables aloud to give them time to practice their oral presentation skills.
This is my favorite time! We either pull sticks to have students share their fables or do a round robin and have them each share with partners around the circle.
These can also be posted on a display board, shared in the student library or put into their poetry journals
We close by sharing all we learned about fables and the characteristics that help us identify them!