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HomeClassroom ResourcesLesson Plans

Lesson Plan

Flying to Freedom: Tar Beach and The People Could Fly

E-mail / Share / Print This Page / Print All Materials (Note: Handouts must be printed separately)

Grades 3 – 5
Lesson Plan Type Standard Lesson
Estimated Time Three 45-minute sessions
Lesson Author

Jennifer Soalt

Concord, Massachusetts


International Literacy Association


Materials and Technology

Student Interactives





  • Tar Beach by Faith Ringgold (New York: Crown, 1991)

  • The People Could Fly by Virginia Hamilton (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1985)

  • Chart paper

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Venn Diagram

Grades   K – 12  |  Student Interactive  |  Organizing & Summarizing

Venn Diagram

This interactive tool allows students to create Venn diagrams that contain two or three overlapping circles, enabling them to organize their information logically.


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1. Read Tar Beach and the afterword included in the text.

2. Read the introduction to the folktale anthology, The People Could Fly, the folktale with the same name as the anthology, The People Could Fly, and the brief afterword that accompanies the tale.

3. Look at Faith Ringgold's website and Virginia Hamilton's website to obtain some background information about both authors and their work. This background information can be used for a number of different purposes, particularly during Session 1.

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