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Readers Theater In Action - Take 1

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Keywords: Drama, Writing Workshop, Readers Theater, Team work
Subject(s): English/Language Arts, Reading, Writing, Social Skills, Video, Drama
Grades P-K through 3
NETS-S Standard:
  • Creativity and Innovation
  • Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making
View Full Text of Standards
School: Turkeyfoot Elementary School, Akron, OH
Planned By: Kara Jones
Original Author: Kara Jones, Akron
Lesson Title: Readers Theater In Action - Take 1

Grade Level: Kindergarten (Two Week Lesson)

Subject Area: Language Arts/Technology


Students will be able to create their own Readers Theater by working in five groups of four.
Students will be able to complete a Retelling Glove (characters, setting, problem, solution, and details) with teachers assistant.
Students will be able to design/create their own backdrop for their Readers Theater.
Students will be able to create a script for the readers theater.
Students will be able to film the entire step from beginning to end of the production (what takes place each day as they work as a team/ ideas/conversations).
Students will be able to act out the Readers Theater for all the another Kindergarten classroom.

English Language Arts

Reading Literature (standard 3) With prompting and support, identify characters, settings, and major events in a story (Retelling Glove).
Reading Literature (standard 5 & 6) Recognize common types of texts (storybooks, poems). With prompting and support, name the author and illustrator of a story and define the role of each in telling the story (creating the script for the Readers Theater).
Writing (standard 1 & 2) use a combination of drawing, dictating, and writing to compose opinion pieces in which they tell a reader the topic or name of the book they are writing about & state an opinion about the topic or book (this will take place as the students are writing the script for their Readers Theater).
Writing (standard 5 & 6) with guidance and support from adults, explore a variety of digital tools to produce and publish writing, including in collaboration with peers (acting out Readers Theater with peers, creating the backdrop for the story, writing the Readers Theaters with classmates).

Grouping of Students:
Students will be placed in five groups of four. There will be a leader assigned in each group and the groups will be mixed ability.

white paper
display boards (one for each group)
construction paper
flip cameras (four - one for each group)
journals (one for each group)
Retelling Glove Sheet (students to be able to brain storm ideas)

Prior Knowledge Needed:
Students will already be familiar with what a Readers Theater is, due to having participated in them as we studied specific authors throughout the school year.

Modification for special needs:
Students that struggle with writing will be given the opportunity to be more involved in coming up with ideas for the Readers Theater or helping design the display board for the Readers Theater (backdrop).

Procedures and Activities:
1. Students will be placed in five groups of four. Each student will have a job assigned to them to make the process go smoothly (the writer, the thinker, the leader, the designer, the person filming). The person filming will be the one to tape the discussions going on during the group time (planning).
2. We will discuss again what it means to be an author. What their jobs are? At this point I will go over the Retelling Glove (characters, setting, problem, solution, and details). I will explain it and model my own Retelling Glove for my story and then allow them to work in groups to start creating their own Readers Theater. All students will participate in this process. The writer and leader will help guide this process so that the group stays on task.
3. Once the students have completed the Retelling Glove, it is now time for the writer to put it all together with the help of his/her teammates. Writing out the scripts for the Readers Theater.
4. At this point I will be walking around the room conferencing with each group. Discussing with students what they might need, or if they need any help in any specific area. Also, I will be able to see how they are working together as a team. (I will do this daily with each group).
5. Students will continue to work on their Readers Theater (drafts). They will turn in their drafts and we will discuss them together as a team (weekly).
6. Then students will create a final Readers Theater. Once this is approved, then the students will be able to start creating the backdrop for the Readers Theater and start practicing their lines so that they are ready to perform in front of the other Kindergarten classrooms.
7. Once the backdrop is finished and they have practiced their lines, the students are going to then evaluate themselves first. The person taping the production will get it ready to tape as they practice for one last time before the final production. Then as a group they will watch themselves perform their Readers Theater using the smartboard and discuss with each other what they should change or how they can improve?
8. Then they make the changes, practice it one more time and then the students are off to perform it to all the Kindergarten classrooms.
9. I will tape the final productions of the students so that I can then evaluate the students, and also send the taping to all the parents through email. This is so the parents can see their child in action - Take 1.

Evaluation and Assessments:
Observational assessments will be conducted as I walk through the room. I will also conference with each group each day. I will sit close by and talk about their ongoing work. These conferences are very important so that they students can continue to create and design their Readers Theater in a successful way. I will also evaluate the students Readers Theater by assessing the script that they created and how well they performed it.

I am so excited to develop this project and to get it up and running in my classroom. I believe that this lesson is a higher level thinking lesson. It will really allow the students to work together as a team, increase their critical thinking skills, and work on the evaluation process.
Cross-Curriculum Ideas
I could have the students do a Math Readers Theater. Students could do one that deals with money and time.
I would have the students do an end of the year project (Readers Theater) for the parents to see at the Kindergarten Celebration Picnic.
Materials: Writing, Literacy, Reading, Camera/Video Accessories, Digital Cameras, Flip Video, Video Cameras, Integrating Technology
Other Items: 4 flip camera, $200.00 each, total of $800.00