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Lesson Plan

The Magic of Three: Techniques for the Writer's Craft

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The Magic of Three: Techniques for the Writer's Craft

Grades 4 – 8
Estimated Time One 30-minute session
Lesson Author

International Literacy Association


Materials and Technology






  • Interactive whiteboard, flip chart, or overhead projector

  • Computers with Internet

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  1. Familiarize yourself with the literary technique of the tricolon and how it is used.

  2. Gather a collection of examples of tricolons from literature or popular culture (e.g., political speeches) or use those provided in this lesson. Prepare these for display to students.

  3. If you would like to use Barack Obama's Victory Speech as an example of writing with Magic of Three, familiarize yourself with the text. (Barack Obama’s Secret for Stirring a Crowd is for teacher use only and will help in identifying the words, sentences, and phrases in threes.) You may choose to make a hard copy of the victory speech for display or bookmark the site for student use, as it has a video as well as the text.

  4. Reproduce the Magic of Three Sentence Frames to display for shared or interactive writing. Be prepared with some ideas of your own if students have trouble contributing ideas.

  5. Make a copy of the Song of the Seasons printout for each student or pair of students to be used as guided writing practice. Take time to try the technique yourself before asking students to do it.

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