It’s not only important for students to be able to read a selection; it’s also important for the students to be able to pick out major parts of the selection. Students should be able to identify parts such as theme, setting and the main characters. The following exercise is one that combines parts of Physical Education with classroom objectives such as identifying the setting, theme, and main characters. It is up to the teacher to decide on the selection that they want their students to study: it might be a poem or a short story. Whichever one it is, the students should be allowed plenty of time to become familiar
with it. Some of the books that I intend to use are
Casey at the Bat
by Ernest Lawrence Thayer and
The Gym Teacher From the Black Lagoon
by Mike Thaler. I chose these selections because they are easy to read and they are enjoyable stories for the students to study.
Title of Activity:
Name that Part
Purpose of Activity:
This activity is specifically geared towards students being able to identify the main idea or theme, as well as main characters, and setting.
Hula-hoops, cones. A large piece of poster board for each group of students. At least six sets of laminated cards that say setting, theme, and main characters that can be hung on the poster board. Also, at least six sets of laminated cards with the specific main character, theme, and setting for each story or poem that the class has been studying.
Description of Activity:
Students will be put into groups of five or six students that are in a single file line behind a cone. At the other end of the gym there is a hula-hoop with the laminated cards inside of it. The first student in line runs down to the hoop, picks out one of the cards and runs back to his team, and then the team has to figure out what part of the story or poem it is, such as theme, setting or main character. When they figure out which part it is they hang the card on the board under that heading, and then the next student would repeat the process.
Hopefully I will be able to incorporate more specific tasks such as identifying supporting characters and multiple settings. There should be enough cards so that every student gets a chance to run down and collect a card.