What’s the Story About?


ELAR-Grade-4 Literary Genres What’s the Story About?
Students identify plot and theme in Aesop’s fable “The Ants and the Grasshopper.” Then, they read an African fable, “The Rat and the Toad,” and answer questions about its plot and theme. Next, they explain their processes of finding theme in “The Ants and the Grasshopper.” Finally, they choose a story they have read and state its plot and theme.

This learning experience is designed for device-enabled classrooms. The teacher guides the lesson, and students use embedded resources, social media skills, and critical thinking skills to actively participate. To get access to a free version of the complete lesson, sign up for an exploros account.

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Here are the teacher pack items for What’s the Story About?:

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Overview

In this experience, students identify plot and theme in Aesop’s fable “The Ants and the Grasshopper.” Then, they read an African fable, “The Rat and the Toad,” and answer questions about its plot and theme. Next, they explain the process they used for finding theme in “The Ants and the Grasshopper.” Finally, they choose a story they have read and state its plot and theme.

Objectives

  • Identify the theme of a story.
  • Distinguish between theme and plot.

Duration

One class period.

Vocabulary Words Used in “The Ants and the Grasshopper”

  • bustling: rushing around busily
  • humbly: meekly, timidly
  • disgust: the sick feeling that comes from something bad, like a taste or smell

Vocabulary Words Used in “The Rat and the Toad”

  • admit: agree that something is true
  • proposal: a suggestion for doing something
  • excel: be very good at doing something


“What’s the story about?” That’s the big question most readers want the answer to before they choose a story. It can be answered in two very different ways:

  1. “What’s the story about?” can mean, “What’s the main action?” For example, “It’s about a bank robbery that goes bad.” That’s an answer about the story’s plot.
  2. “What’s the story about?” can mean, “What is the author saying in this story?” For example, “It’s about how dumb crime is.” That’s an answer about the story’s theme.

In this experience, you’ll learn about both meanings.

Objectives

  • Identify the theme of a story.
  • Distinguish between theme and plot.
Look at the following illustration from Aesop’s fable, “The Ants and the Grasshopper.” You may already know this story.


The grasshopper and the ants talking

“The Ants & the Grasshopper”


Make a prediction what you think the story is about.

Post your answer

Students who are not familiar with the story will likely make predictions about the plot. Students who are familiar with the story or with the genre of fables may make predictions about the theme.


When everyone is ready to continue, unlock the next scene.

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The Complete List of Learning Experiences in Literary Genres Unit.
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