In my lesson openers I always have a "connect" in which I connect students' thinking about yesterday's lesson to today's lesson. I then have a "teach" in which I model for students the lesson of the day and also have them try it out. When I think about my modeling, I use three categories; skill, strategy, and process. I model by stating the skill to the students, then giving them a strategy in which to use the skill, followed by the process to try out the strategy.
Connect: I will say, “We have finished a rough draft of our historical fiction story. In order to craft one last genre, we are going to craft a fantasy fiction story, but first we are going to brainstorm ideas.
Teach: I will say, “In order to brainstorm ideas for our fantasy fiction story, I am going to tell you the different types of fantasy stories and the elements of a fantasy story. We are going to use the skill of watching examples (movie trailers) and the strategy of determining the elements of a fantasy fiction story in order to help us brainstorm. The process I will use is as follows:
1) Read over the definitions for the types and elements of fantasy (see below resource on active engagement).
2) Determine how to craft a fantasy story by watching examples.
3) Start brainstorming possible settings for a fantasy story.”
I will ask a student volunteer to read the definitions of high and low fantasy and have students write in other examples with a partner. I have found with this lesson, that there is not much modeling for the definitions or elements of a fantasy story needed, so I will go right to engagement.
Students will watch movie trailers in order to understand the difference between high and low fantasy and the components of each using the Fantasy fiction brainstorm document and the below clips. They will turn and talk about their answers to the brainstorm and then share out as a class after viewing the clips.
Closing of Active Engagement: I will say, “Remember successful writers practice the skill of learning definitions of a new genre and the strategy of using examples to understand the definitions. They use examples to get ideas about how they would craft a fantasy fiction story."
Independent Practice: I will say, “Now that you have practiced with the elements of a fantasy story and understand the definitions, I want you to think deeply about the setting. Just like we saw with historical fiction, the setting is extremely important to making our story come alive. Before we brainstorm the other elements, we have to think about the setting in which our fantasy fiction elements will come alive in.”
I will show them how I brainstorm with a two-column chart (Type of world (setting)/Description (I wish). Below is an example of what I taught the students.
I will say, “You will brainstorm your setting and then start crafting a detailed description of your setting or you can draw a map of your setting. You should have at least page. I will walk around and confer with students while they listen to the “Spiderman Two Film Score” on Pandora Radio for their fantasy fiction writing music. I will confer using Possible Conferences for Crafting Setting.
Partner Work: Students will be directed to turn and share a scene with their partner when I see that most of the class has completed at least half of a page. I will say, “I want you to share your description or drawing with a partner. “Decide who will be partner A and who will be partner B. Partner A I want you to share what you have written or drawn so far. Partner B, I want you to listen if Partner A has created a setting that will make the other fantasy elements come alive. If not, give them feedback; tell them an idea of what they could add or let them know what your favorite part was and why. Then you will switch.” I will then give students time to revise, or have them make notes and revise for homework.
I believe that the end of the lesson should be an assessment of the days’ learning; therefore it should be independent work. I always end class with an exit ticket in which students write down the response to a question.
Closing: Students will share out their setting ideas and will continue describing or drawing their setting for homework.