I told students we were going to learn another way to retell a story by identifying the beginning, middle, and end of the story. I reviewed with students the elements of a story. They were able to tell me they were the characters, setting, problem, and solution. I then explained that the key parts of a story during a retell are the beginning, middle, and end, which include story elements. I directed students’ attention to the chart I had posted on the board. It listed questions to ask during each part of a story. This was to aid my visual learners and serve as a reminder for all students during independent practice.
I modeled giving a retell by completing a graphic organizer after reading the myth, Zeus and Prometheus. I placed the graphic organizer (GO) on the document camera so that all students could see. I referred to the questions on the poster. I highlighted the characters and setting in the story and wrote the information in the beginning section of the GO. I did this with each successive part of the GO. Finally, I verbally gave a recounting of the myth by reading each section of the GO.
After I modeled completing the GO, I guided students through completing a GO for a different myth we had read. When we were done, we verbally recounted the myth by reading each section of the GO.
For independent practice, students read two myths of their choosing and recounted them by completing the graphic organizer. I allowed them to select which myths to read because I know that students are more engaged with literature that interests them. (I’d gone to the library and checked out books with myths from various cultures.) As they worked, I walked around the room providing assistance as needed.
I closed the lesson by asking volunteers to recount a myth they had read in front of the class. This cemented the day's learning and gave students practice speaking in front of an audience.