Reflection: Student Ownership What Makes a Short Story? - Section 3: Guided Practice


With the basic idea of what a short story was, now sitting freshly in their minds, I was ready to begin building the bridges to the main objective of Lesson 3; Familiarizing the students with the Elements of Plot, Setting, Character and Sequencing events as they relate to the short story.  Once again, I wanted the children to have that unique kind of experience which would result in a lasting mental image that they would remember long after this lesson was done.  More specifically, I wanted the children to use their hands, eyes and minds (multiple senses) during the whole group activity so that it would promote a more memorable experience.  To accomplish this, I created a resource for this lesson that I called the “Elements of a Short Story Handbook”.  The Elements of a Short Story Handbook is essentially an interactive handout that can be used to guide the students through the main elements of a short story as well providing them with a ready reference book that can be used in the future. 

To be honest, the Elements of a Short Story Handbook was very simple for me to create in volume and the students responded very positively when I told them this would become their personal handbook to keep and to use whenever they would need it.  The handbook is pretty much your basic print, fold and staple template from which I was able to create 24 finished handbooks from in about 20 minutes.  I used standard white printer paper for mine but with a little finesse, heavier stock and a variety of colors could also be used. The main purpose of the activity is to have them help in interactively discovering the missing information.

  Adding Meaning to Lessons
  Student Ownership: Adding Meaning to Lessons
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What Makes a Short Story?

Unit 12: Book Study
Lesson 3 of 5

Objective: SWBAT identify and list the elements of a short story.

Big Idea: Use the literary text If You Give a Pig a Pancake to teach your students the elements of a short story.

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