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Travel Brochures: Highlighting the Setting of a Story
|Grades||6 – 8|
|Lesson Plan Type||Standard Lesson|
|Estimated Time||Five 50-minute sessions|
Imagine the images and detailed descriptions of the places depicted in a book you’ve read recently—whether a far-away land, a historical location, or a city just like the one you live in. Settings transport readers to these places, inviting them to consider what it would be like to visit these locations personally. This lesson plan takes that imaginary tourism one step further by asking students to create a travel brochure for locations in texts that they have read. The activity requires students to think about and collect the details mentioned in the text that should be highlighted and conduct additional research on the location as they design their own brochures.
This lesson plan uses Al Capone Does My Shirts by Gennifer Choldenko as the example; however, any text in any genre would work well.
Travel Brochure Rubric: Use this rubric to evaluate the organization, ideas, conventions, and graphics of travel brochures students have created.
Recording the Setting Bookmark: Students use this reproducible sheet, which can be cut into bookmarks, to record details about a story's setting as the read.
Printing Press: Use this online tool to create a newspaper, brochure, booklet, or flyer. Students choose a layout, add content, and then print out their work.
Often, students end a unit of study by writing a traditional research paper. While this is a good way for students to summarize what they have learned, it may not be the most interesting. Beyond that, it frequently results in summary and rote repetition rather than deep critical thinking. In this lesson plan, students go through the research process, but will take that information and turn it into a travel brochure. In her English Journal article, Janet Northrup says, "Unlike a research paper that usually has two readers, the teacher and the student, a pamphlet encourages ownership of a topic, a topic which each student knows will be shared with (and taught to) others. Also, class members develop research skills. They learn how to find information, develop a sense of voice and audience, write an arguable thesis statement, select relevant facts, create an interesting layout, and edit carefully." This project will meet the needs of both students and the teacher.
Northrup, Janet. "Pamphlets: An Introduction to Research Techniques." English Journal 86.6 (October 1997): 53-56.