Students will demonstrate their understanding of their audience and storyline by writing down a story idea.
A large space, 2 children’s books (one more complicated to read with less pictures than the other one)
Have the students lie down on their backs and tell them you are going back in time. Tell the students that to better understand your audience we are going to take you back to elementary school. We are going to take you back to a time when your biggest worry may have been how will I wear my hair today and your hardest assignment was addition and subtraction. Take yourself back to your childhood- what was your role? Who were you? Go back to elementary school, visualize what you looked like.
Group Practice- Tell the students that you want them to imagine they are now at the school playground and its recess. They need to visualize themselves in that space as their elementary selves. Ask the students to now get up and explore the space. What did they do on the playground? Who did they associate with? What were their hobbies or talents at the playground? Have them play around for a bit
STEP 2: Transition- Make a ringing bell sound with your mouth and call the students to line up for your class. Tell the students that recess is over and it’s time to go to class!
STEP 3: Group Practice- Gather the students around you like in story time. Read the first book to them, that has lots of pictures and is really easy to read. Then read the other story to them. This story will be more complicated and not as interesting to them. They may start losing focus and this is good! Stop after you read a few pages and ask the students to now transfer to their high school selves.
STEP 4: Discussion- Ask the students what they thought about the two stories. Answers could include that they liked the first one because it was easy to understand and was short with lots of pictures. The other story may be too long, no pictures and harder to understand with lots of big words. Tell the students that we want to create a story that will appeal to our younger audience. They will like a story that is easy to understand.
STEP 5: Individual practice- Ask the students if they have seen anything that we have done today they like and think could be part of our devised piece. Ask the students what kind of stories they like or want to tell that could involve our theme but telling it in a new way. Have the students write down ideas that they might have on a piece of paper.
STEP 6: Group discussion- After they have had time writing down ideas have the students share with the class. Have each student go one at a time and remind the class to listen to each other. Write down any ideas that you think could work as they are sharing. After they have all shared ask the class if there are any ideas that really stand out to them or ones that they may want to combine? For example, the students could all be animals telling a story about bullying. The will start out as children at grandpa’s house and they are getting along so grandpa realizes he needs to tell them a story to get them to work together. (This will be the example that I continue to use for the rest of the unit)
STEP 7: Individual practice- With time left in class have the students pick an animal and start to explore the space as that animal.
Students can be assessed on their storyline written on paper and their participation in activities.