Thursday, August 14, 2014

Fables

Today is the third day of school. I still don't have a full class, but I'm starting a writing unit anyway - Fables.

I started by writing the word "Fables" on the board, and then I read my students "The Goose That Laid Golden Eggs." My students narrated back the story, and I read a second fable - "The Hare and the Tortoise." Students narrated back the story, and I discovered that one little girl had been visualizing a hair not a hare. See how necessary narration is?

Then I asked students to think about what these two stories had in common. Here is the list students brainstormed:
They have characters we don't want to be like.*
Fables are not true.
They have lessons at the end.
They are short.
They have talking animals.
They have magic.
Animals act like humans.

*I taught students the word emulate.

With only a few minutes left before lunch, I asked students if they knew what it's called when characters in a story speak. No one did. So I wrote dialogue on the board. Then I read the first line of "The Goose That Laid Golden Eggs" to my class and asked students what an appropriate line of dialogue for the farmer might be. They liked this a lot.

Tomorrow, my plan is to have them create dialogue for the rest of the story. (The progymnasmata term for this is "amplification.")

Stay tuned...

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