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Lesson Plan

Memories Matter: The Giver and Descriptive Writing Memoirs

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Memories Matter: The Giver and Descriptive Writing Memoirs

Grades 6 – 8
Lesson Plan Type Standard Lesson
Estimated Time Seven 50-minute sessions
Lesson Author

Lisa Gaines

Hoover, Alabama


National Council of Teachers of English


Materials and Technology

Student Interactives






Copies of The Giver by Lois Lowery

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Story Map

Grades   K – 12  |  Student Interactive  |  Organizing & Summarizing

Story Map

The Story Map interactive is designed to assist students in prewriting and postreading activities by focusing on the key elements of character, setting, conflict, and resolution.



Grades   K – 12  |  Student Interactive  |  Organizing & Summarizing


Students generate descriptive timelines and can include images in the description.


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  • Obtain copies of The Giver for student use. This lesson is designed to begin at Chapter 10 of the book and uses Chapters 10 and 11 explicitly. Connections to other parts of the book are at the teacher's discretion. Time for drafting and peer editing may be interspersed into the reading of the book or left as a culminating activity upon completion of The Giver.

  • Prepare copies or transparencies of all necessary handouts.

  • Familiarize yourself with the American Memory Website and directions for the related Memories Matter: A Look at the American Memory Website handout. You may wish to have a look at the "This Day in History" entry for the day you will be visiting the site to be familiar with the specific content as well as site layout and functionality.

  • Obtain access to an Internet connected computer lab for Sessions 2, 5 and 6. Bookmark the American Memory Website and the ReadWriteThink Interactive Timeline and/or Story Map.

  • Preview the ReadWriteThink video and lessons and the NPR podcast referenced in Session Four. Determine the best method for sharing appropriate information from these resources with your students.

  • Test and familiarize yourself with the ReadWriteThink Interactive Timeline and/or Story Map and determine which is best suited to the needs of your students. Ensure that you have the Flash plug-in installed. You can download the plug-in from the technical support page.

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