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Lesson Plan

The Mysteries of Harris Burdick: Using Illustrations to Guide Writing

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The Mysteries of Harris Burdick: Using Illustrations to Guide Writing

Grades 5 – 9
Lesson Plan Type Standard Lesson
Estimated Time Seven 50-minute sessions
Lesson Author

Cathy Allen Simon

Cathy Allen Simon

Urbana, Illinois

Publisher

National Council of Teachers of English

 

Lesson Plans

Student Interactives

Calendar Activities

 

LESSON PLANS

Grades   3 – 5  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson

What's in a Mystery? Exploring and Identifying Mystery Elements

Students identify the characteristics of mystery writing, outline a mystery story using a graphic organizer, write and revise their own mystery story, edit each other's work, and share their mysteries.

 

Grades   6 – 8  |  Lesson Plan  |  Unit

Everyone Loves a Mystery: A Genre Study

Students track the elements of mystery stories through Directed Learning–Thinking Activities, story maps, and puzzles. Then they offer clues for other readers as they plan and write original mystery stories.

 

Grades   6 – 8  |  Lesson Plan  |  Unit

Developing Story Structure With Paper-Bag Skits

Lights, camera, action, and a bit of mystery! In this lesson, students use mystery props in a skit bag to create and perform in short, impromptu skits.

 

Grades   6 – 8  |  Lesson Plan  |  Unit

Expository Escapade—Detective’s Handbook

Students create a Detective's Handbook based on a detective mystery they have read. The handbooks include expository and descriptive writing, as well as a letter.

 

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STUDENT INTERACTIVES

Grades   3 – 12  |  Student Interactive  |  Organizing & Summarizing

Cube Creator

The interactive Cube Creator helps students identify and summarize key elements. It can be used as a prewriting or postreading activity.

 

Grades   6 – 12  |  Student Interactive  |  Writing & Publishing Prose

Mystery Cube

The Mystery Cube helps students identify and summarize story elements in this popular genre. It can be used as a postreading or prewriting activity.

 

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CALENDAR ACTIVITIES

Grades   3 – 12  |  Calendar Activity  |  April 28

Author Lois Duncan was born on this date in 1934.

Mysteries are shared with students for them to solve and brainstorm the attributes of a good mystery. Small groups then compose short mysteries using the Mystery Cube.

 

Grades   3 – 8  |  Calendar Activity  |  February 3

In 1927, Joan Lowery Nixon was born.

As a class, a genre study of mysteries takes place and a chart is made about what makes a good mystery.

 

Grades   3 – 12  |  Calendar Activity  |  June 18

Today is Chris Van Allsburg's birthday.

Students explore varying points of view, one of Van Allsburg's common themes, by rewriting a traditional story.

 

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