Recently, our reading team approached my co-librarian and I with a request for a lesson on setting. They wanted their students to understand the big picture in the setting of a story -- primarily realistic/historic fiction or non-fiction settings -- in terms of geography, climate and terrain, as well as distance and scale. Whew. A lot to cover in a 47-minute class period. But after brainstorming and planning (as well as some consultation with Corey), we pulled together a fun lesson with lots of posibilities. We headed out into the world with our reading classes using Google Earth.
We created a graphic organizer to help our students focus on all the different pieces of setting that they needed to discover. We used the acronym BAGS (as in Pack your BAGS!) to help them remember to:
A logical next step is to have students work through this "Pack Your BAGS" organizer on an excerpt of their choice, traveling Google Earth and doing a quick database search.
And, a great extension would be to ask students build their own Google Earth trip for a text they are reading and then share those trips with each other!
What strategies do you have for teaching setting to your students?
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