Sunday, October 6, 2013

Lesson Up Express October Intrigue

ELA Common Core Activities-October Intrigue
As Summer slips into Fall and calendars open to October, students start to daydream about Halloween, while teachers search their Lesson Idea files for ways to keep students engaged and learning. 

This FREE ELA activity, "Lesson Up Express: October Intrigue," offers three activities that fit this first full month of autumn. All of them enable students to strengthen their skills for analyzing characters/people in fiction and narrative non-fiction. 

The first, "Island Odyssey," correlates to Columbus Day. Here, students act as the captain of a ship that sails to an uncharted island for a month. Their crew is composed of three characters. They analyze and defend their character choices first, and then they explain what items they will take with them to help their mission succeed. A writing assignment where students discuss their three-pronged plan for success and ways to overcome obstacles completes this activity.

The next two activities reveal a Halloween theme. In "Fleshing out the Character," students write words, phrases and quotations from the book that they are studying on slips of paper, and cut each one into the shape of a body part. They glue these selections onto a skeleton, forming a complete male or female figure by the end of the literature study.

"It's a Halloween Party: Who Am I" requires students to choose a costume for a character from a
Fleshing out The Character Activity
story and then analyze why that outfit suits him or her. After that, they must choose a character that they will represent, and dress in a way that shows that person's personality as well as physical, emotional, spiritual and moral qualities.

All of these analyzing character activities are aligned with Common Core Standards and Bloom's Taxonomy. By completing any of them, students are adding durability to their comprehension homes. Together, they create a house of bricks that no Big Bad Wolf or Halloween hobgoblin can knock down.

Happy Teaching,