Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Cinderella Story Elements - Reading

When the third grade teacher I work with told me that the last unit of the year was fairy tales I became giddy with excitement! 
And off I scurried to pull out my Graduate School final project.  This was before I knew about fun fonts and copyright! 

I'd created this whole unit around the various versions of Cinderella.  When I originally wrote the unit, we were just looking for common elements and then writing our own in a writer's workshop-esque format.  However since then the unit has expanded and matured a little bit.  For the purposes of this third grade unit we moved away from the "around the world" part and focused on the story elements.  

The following unit plan is how my colleagues and I proceeded through the unit.  I've included what we will be modifying for next year (this was our first year doing it).  All of the graphic organizers are available for you to purchase on TpT.   I have provided the link at the end.

I am going to start with just the reading portion of this unit, another post regarding the second half (writing) will be linked at the end!


The first thing all students did was this interactive online Cinderella story.  It plays through the traditional Cinderella story with some humorous additions that made our 3rd graders giggle.  After telling the story it goes through each story element starting with setting right through the resolution.  Each story element is accompanied by a definition and an interactive activity to allow the students to demonstrate their understanding.  We assigned this to students within the google classroom, so it was easy for them to click on the link and bring it right up!  This took us about 2 days to complete.
If you are unable to complete this activity online I have included Pocket Chart sized words and definitions within the resources available on TpT

After they completed the online activities they were given a graphic organizer with all of the story elements listed, and a separate sheet of definitions.  They had to cut out the definitions and glue them into the correct spots on the graphic organizer.  Exposition, and climax were tricky ones for them!


Once the students had the definitions down the classroom teacher and I demonstrated how we would fill in the graphic organizer using information from the Cinderella story.  Unfortunately I don't have a picture of our organizer (couldn't find it!), however it looked something like this:
Then students were allowed in groups of two or three to choose a Cinderella book of their own to read and fill out the story elements for.  These students chose to read Rough Face Girl by Rafe Martin.  One thing they (and other groups) struggled with zeroing in on the protagonist.  They often put every not mean character in the protagonist column.  We had to review that the protagonist was the one person in the story they wanted to succeed and overcome the obstacles! 

All-in-all we had about 20 different versions of Cinderella to choose from!  We decided to narrow that down for next year however.  Some of the Cinderella stories are very, very wordy and don't follow the traditional Cinderella structure.  These were some of our favorites:
Rough Face Girl, Cindy Ellen, Cinderella Skeleton, Prince Cinders,
Cinder-Elly, Bigfoot Cinderrrrrella, Bubba the Cowboy Prince, Interstellar Cinderella


After they read and determined story elements for their Cinderella stories they created a slideshow in google slides to present their story.  I had the pages set up for them, they simply typed in their story elements and took some photos to add into the slide.  This was super easy to do on the chromebooks and with Google Slides.  After they presented to the class we printed out their slides (2 to a page) and created this display in the hallway!  It was a big hit!
An editable version of this PowePoint is available within the resources available on TpT.  I have also included a non-editable PDF if your students will be filling it out by hand! Click below to go to TpT.



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