Using Timelines to Follow a Plot

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SWBAT comprehend a text with overlapping timelines by creating a timeline graphic organizer.

Big Idea

Using timelines to keep track of what happened when!


5 minutes

I start today's lesson by posing this question to the class, "In which class do you use a lot of timelines?"  I'm looking for them to say "history" or "social studies" to which I reply, "Why do you use timelines in that class?"

We then have a teacher-led discussion about what can be shown on a timeline.  If a student does not, I will mention the word chronological, so that students have an academic word to use to describe events on a timeline.

I then have students set up a sheet of paper in the landscape direction with a timeline.  If you would prefer a clean timeline, you can use TimelineCh.29-31.docx


Getting Down to Business

40 minutes

Since we have already read chapters 29 and 30, we will take a few minutes to put events on our timeline.  On the first page of the timeline I have written the major events, though you and your class may come up with a different list.

Once the events of Saturday - Tuesday are on the line, we will take a moment to draw lines to indicate what information was covered in chapters 29 and 30.  See the second page of the timeline resource.

Once we have the chapter 29 and 30 lines, I will read the first sentence or two of chapter 31.

I ask students to place a dot in the place where the chapter 31 line will begin.  Once I see that everyone's dot indicates that chapter 31 starts as the children went into the caves on Saturday, we will either listen to or read the remainder of chapter 31.


Did They Get It?

10 minutes

To end today's lesson, I have students do a quick write on the back of their timelines.  I ask them to think about what type of text could easily be represented on a timeline.  I ask them to reflect on whether using a timeline in this case helped them understand what each chapter was about.

I then collect the timelines for a formative assessment.