The Fairy Tale theme offers an opportunity to meet many of your RL.K. outcomes. I incorporated plenty of drama into this theme. My students a re-enacted the emergent reader versions of the books “Gingerbread Man Perseveres”, “The Wolf Shows Self-Control” and “Everyone Helps Out”. They presented these to their parents, as well, I projected a page from their story onto the interactive whiteboard to show off their story writing skills.
Story Writing Using a Pattern
The months of March and beyond are exciting times of year when the majority of students can apply what they have learned about letters and sounds through their story writing. For their first story writing experience, I had them follow a patterned story so all the students can experience success. They choose their own setting, ending and different characters that would follow the patterned series of events as outlined in the emergent reader “Gingerbread Man Perseveres”.
The Pattern Emergent Reader Used
Setting the Stage
My students had an alphabet chart handy that they can refer to. It is not uncommon for them to forget proper letter formation and what the letter looks like that is related to a specific sound. My students used the chart and alphabet wall pictures regularly. The pictures on the chart are related to the alphabet sight word readers and songs that were used to teach the the alphabet. The students have taught me the importance of using strong visuals; it results in greater retention and more meaningful learning.
Easy How to Draw Sites
Illustrating the story can be challenging for some students. The best “How to Draw” sites I have found are in the links.
Writing and Differentiated Instruction
Choosing a Setting
The students first task was to choose a setting. I tried to encourage them to choose a setting that was related to their level of interest. An example of a setting can be found in the photograph on the right. I provided a patterned story starter that allows for differentiation.
Event Sample One
The illustration on the left was taken from the setting displayed. All her characters will be related to a castle setting. The students were to complete a series of events using the story starter below:
Run, run, as fast as you can
You can’t catch me, I’m the gingerbread man.
I had to run away from…..
Event Sample Two
In the photograph on the left, this author chose “Cat Land” to be her setting. All her characters will be different types of cats. In this picture it is a “baby rainbow cat”.
Event Sample Three
The story on the right is (a powerful unicorn). The setting chosen for this story is “Unicorn Land”
Event Sample Four
The author in this story is really into bobcats (Bobcat Land) so all his characters will be bobcats with different features.
Ending the Stories
Each story provided a similar ending to the emergent reader “Gingerbread Man Perseveres”. The author provided an ending that shows what happens to Gingerbread Man when he perseveres and escapes from all the characters that chased him in the story.
I have taught many different grades; kindergarten and grade one are one of the most exciting in terms of witnessing growth. For many, their printing was initially scribbling and now their thoughts are expressed by using letters. Initially, they did not know the difference between a word and letter but now they can track and read words. This is why I love teaching!!!