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Lesson Plan

Heroes Around Us

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Grades 6 – 8
Lesson Plan Type Standard Lesson
Estimated Time Three 45-minute sessions
Lesson Author

Mary E. Shea, Ph.D.

Mary E. Shea, Ph.D.

Buffalo, New York


International Literacy Association



From Theory to Practice



Students will explore the distinction between a hero and an idol. Based on collaboratively established criteria for heroism and characteristics of heroes, students will select, read about, and report on a hero. Students will identify how their hero matches their criteria and characteristics. Hero reports will be compiled into a class book. As a follow-up, the teacher will read aloud and lead a discussion of the poem Heroes We Never Name to emphasize the fact that there are heroes all around us. Students will write about a hero they know and describe this person's noble qualities and deeds.

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Coiro, J. (2003). Reading comprehension on the Internet: Expanding our understanding of reading comprehension to encompass new literacies. The Reading Teacher, 56, 458–464.

  • Students have an opportunity to interact with new text formats (i.e., multiple media) that require new thought processes.

  • Students are engaged with challenging, authentic information sources that are used extensively in the "real world."

  • Readers must adopt a more critical stance toward text or risk being tricked, persuaded, or biased.

  • The teacher acts as a facilitator—guiding readers to online texts, modeling how to use comprehension strategies flexibly, and scaffolding learning opportunities embedded within these sources.

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