A Hat for Ivan Lesson Plan

Instructor: Kerry Gray

Kerry has been a teacher and an administrator for more than twenty years. She has a Master of Education degree.

This lesson plan may be used to help your students understand parable and character motives while reading 'A Hat for Ivan' by Max Lucado. Students will also make a text-to-self connection.

Learning Objective

Upon completion of this lesson on A Hat for Ivan by Max Lucado, students will be able to:

  • Answer questions about the story.
  • Understand the author's purpose and the motivations of the characters.
  • Make a text-to-self connection.

Time Length

90 minutes

Common Core Curriculum Standards


Ask and answer such questions as who, what, where, when, why, and how to demonstrate understanding of key details in a text.


Recount stories, including fables and folktales from diverse cultures, and determine their central message, lesson, or moral.


Describe how characters in a story respond to major events and challenges.

Lesson Instructions and Activities


Students will be able to understand the following key vocabulary terms:

  • Announced
  • Bait
  • Balance
  • Bandanna
  • Carpenter
  • Chuckled
  • Confused
  • Dictionary
  • Directions
  • Disappointed
  • Gather
  • Ideas
  • Intended
  • Interrupted
  • Miniature
  • Parable
  • Path
  • Recognize
  • Scent
  • Studio


  • Copy of A Hat for Ivan by Max Lucado
  • Paper
  • Pencils
  • Construction Paper
  • Scissors
  • Tape
  • Markers
  • Hat Templates

Reading and Discussion

  • Preview vocabulary with students prior to reading the story.
  • While reading A Hat for Ivan by Max Lucado to students, pause at the appropriate times to ask the following discussion questions:
    • Describe the hats Ivan's father makes.
    • What is Hat Day?
    • Turn and talk: What would your hat look like?
    • What does the baker give to Ivan? Why?
    • Describe Miss Anita.
    • What kind of hat does Miss Anita think is right for Ivan?
    • What does Bruno give Ivan?
    • What happens when Ivan gets to school?
    • How does Ivan feel by the end of the day? Why?
    • What advice does his father give him?
    • What kind of hat do you think Ivan's father will make for him?
    • Turn and talk: What message do you think the author is trying to give the reader?


Materials needed: copy of A Hat for Ivan by Max Lucado, paper, pencils

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