File - Patricia McGonagle's Professional Portfolio

Ms. McGonagle
ELA Lesson Plans
Massachusetts Standards:
9.5: Relate a literary work to artifacts, artistic creations, or historical sites of the period of its
10.4: Identify and analyze the characteristics of various genres (narrative poem, nonfiction,
picture book) as forms chosen by an author to accomplish a purpose.
13.20: Identify and use knowledge of common organizational structures.
14.2: Identify rhyme and rhythm, repetition, similes, and sensory images in poems.
15.5: Identify and analyze imagery and figurative language.
15.6: Identify and analyze how an author’s use of words creates tone and mood.
Week’s Objectives:
1. Organize words into categories (open sort) using background knowledge and dictionaries
in collaboration with group members.
2. Examine some of the tragedies of the civil rights movement through a variety of genres.
3. Identify the characteristics of nonfiction text and poetry.
4. Explore the purpose of figurative language in a poem.
5. Become familiar with figurative language techniques.
Language Objectives:
1. Sort words into open categories.
2. In small groups, write 3 possible (prediction) sentences that may be included in the text
using vocabulary from the word sort.
3. Modify predictions after reading text and reflection on the information found in the text.
Essential Question for the Week:
1. Would you be willing to give your life to ensure equality for all Americans?
2. How did the events of the 16th Street Baptist Church bombing effect some teenagers who
lived in Birmingham at that time?
Day 1:
Do Now: Admit slip 3-2-1: Display image of the 16th Street Baptist Church bombing and the
four victims (ppt.). Students will write 3 words they think of when they look at the picture, 2
ideas based on the image and their ideas, and one question they have about the image.
Main Activity:
1. Distribute word sort bags to each group. Introduce the new pre-reading/building
background activity called word sorts.Have student groups sort the words into categories
of their own choosing (open sort).
2. After students have sorted the words, have them create three sentences based on what
they think the text will be about. Students will have an opportunity to revise their
sentences at the end of the lesson tomorrow.
3. Read-aloud: Tony Morrison’s Remember: the Journey to School Integration. Pages are
short and include photos from the civil rights era. Discuss text in the context of how
segregation/desegregation led to many horrific events during the 1960’s.
4. Distribute copies of The Ballad of Birmingham, a narrative poem written by Dudley
Randall. Have students read the poem silently once, then with a partner. While reading,
students will mark up the text with their responses/reactions. Before discussing the poem,
play video clip of The Ballad of Birmingham, sung by the Tennesee State University
5. Discuss the terms ballad (a narrative song or poem) and irony (the difference between
what appears and what is actually true. Display poem on the ActivBoard and discuss,
marking the text where there is a shift in the author’s tone/mood, irony, and
6. Exit slip: Write three things you learned, two questions you have, one personal response
comment about today’s lesson.
Video and poem will be posted to Edmodo and will be open for additional discussion until
Monday of next week. Everyone will be expected to post at least one comment/response
(students without a computer will have access during after-school tomorrow).
Word sort bags, copies of The Ballad of Birmingham, text Remember: The Journey to School
Integration, video of The Ballad of Birmingham
Teacher observation, class participation/discussion, group participation/discussion, Edmodo
Pre-teach vocabulary, group work/collaboration, partner reading, use of Spanish-English
dictionary, audio and video support/visual aids, kinesthetic movement
Day 2:
Do Now:
Using yesterday’s exit slips, review yesterday’s lesson and clarify any misunderstandings. Have
a few students share out their personal responses. Ask students what they didn’t know before
yesterday that they now knew. Does this change your thinking about anything? If so, how?
Main Activity:
1. Play a clip of the History Channel’s “Klan Bombing of Birmingham Church, 1963.”
2. Distribute copies of the September 16, 1963 UPI/Washington Post article “Six Dead
After Church Bombing” and the Think Charts. Students will work in groups to read and
respond to the article on the 16th Street Baptist Church bombing on September 15, 1963.
3. Discuss the article, video, and student responses. Students will most likely focus on two
major outcomes of the bombing: What kind of atmosphere would allow this group to
think they could get away with this kind of violent act? Why was no one held accountable
for this tragedy?
4. Groups will take out the three sentences they wrote yesterday during the “DO NOW”
activity. Based on Morrison’s text and the newspaper article, have students revise their
three sentences. Give students a few minutes to complete this activity, then select student
volunteers to read their sentences out loud.
Copies of the 1963 UPI/Washington Post article, copies of the Think Chart, dictionaries,
flipchart with video segment
Teacher observation, class/group participation, class discussion, completion/visual check of
Think Charts
Pre-teach vocabulary, partner reading, use of Spanish-English dictionary, video support/visual
Day 3:
Do Now: Read aloud: The Birmingham Sunday School Bombing from the “Scholastic ReadAloud Anthology”
Main Activity:
1. Distribute copies of 1963 The Birmingham Bombing and accompanying questions.
Preview the questions.
2. Gallery Walk: 3 pieces chart paper with excerpts from interviews with three teenage girls
who lived in Birmingham, Alabama when the bombing occurred. Divide students into
three group and distribute post it notes to each student.
3. As students walk through the gallery, have them jot down on their post it notes any
thoughts, questions, or comments and post them to the chart paper. Give students about
5-8 minutes at each station before moving them on to the next one.
4. Once students return to their seats, select one member of each group to share out the
comments that were left on the charts.Discuss students’ responses.
5. With a partner, students will re-read the selection. At each table, students will discuss the
questions and jot down notes.
6. Begin homework assignment: journal entry
Write a journal entry answering the four questions from the handout.
Copy of The Birmingham Sunday School Bombing from the “Scholastic Read-Aloud
Copies of 1963 The Birmingham Bombing and accompanying questions, chart paper, post-it
notes, journal entry rubric
Teacher observation, class participation, scored journal entries according to rubric
Spanish-English dictionary, partner work, extra time to complete writing assignment
Day 4:
Do Now: Distribute lyrics to the song, “Birmingham Sunday” by Joan Baez. Students will watch
a short YouTube video of the song.
Main Activity:
1. While students are listening and watching, encourage them to jot down their
observations/thoughts about the lyrics.
2. After the song has ended, give students a few minutes to jot down a few sentences in
response to what they just heard, watched, and read (lyrics).
3. Have student volunteers share their sentences.
4. Discuss the figurative language used in the lyrics- ex. On Birmingham Sunday the blood
ran like wine, and the repetition of the line and the choirs kept singing of Freedom.
5. Redistribute word sort bags and have students re-sort them now that they have more
knowledge of the events of September 15, 1963.
6. Exit slip: Which activity did you like best? What did you like least? What would you like
to learn more about? Name one thing you learned during this activity that you didn’t
know before.
Copies of “Birmingham Sunday” by Joan Baez, YouTube video, word sort bags.
Teacher observation, class discussion and participation, exit slip
Spanish-English dictionaries, partner/group work, audio and visual support, kinesthetic
Day 5:
Main Activity:
1. Students will watch the Spike Lee documentary “Four Little Girls.”
DVD of “Four Little Girls”
Repetition of concepts/events/terms, audio/visual