Bethany is a certified Special Education and Elementary teacher with 11 years experience teaching Special Education from grades PK through 5. She has a Bachelor's degree in Special Education, Elementary Education, and English from Gordon College and a Master’s degree in Special Education from Salem State University.
Anne of Green Gables
Anne of Green Gables, the beloved classic by L. M. Montgomery, tells of the imaginative orphan Anne Shirley whose unlikely adoption turns her new home and town upside down. The tale of Anne's exploits has a number of screen adaptations, but the original novel is well worth reading with upper elementary students. After reading, try these writing, language, and creative arts activities, which can be tweaked to accommodate the specific needs of your student group.
- Working individually or in groups, students select several events from the novel Anne of Green Gables.
- Students write a brief article describing each event and collect them in a newspaper.
- Alternative: Students collect their articles in an online newspaper format.
- Reread the section of the novel that introduces Mrs. Rachel Lynde.
- Students imagine what they would see looking out their window and watching the neighbors.
- Each student writes a series of journal entries, letters, or emails describing events they witnessed out their window.
- Specify the writing skill you want students to emphasize in this activity, such as writing using chronological order, varying sentence structure, or using precise details.
Descriptive Writing - Path to School
- Reread the section of the book where Anne describes her walk to school.
- Discuss the use of descriptive language and sensory language.
- For homework, students write at least six descriptive details from their own journey to school.
- Students write a descriptive passage describing their travel to school.
- Anne and Diana scare themselves deeply with their tale about the wood between their houses, which they call the Haunted Wood. Reread this segment of text.
- Students write their own ghost story.
- Optional: Edit, illustrate, and publish the stories.
The Name Game
- When Anne arrives at Green Gables, she chooses fancy descriptive names to replace the dull designations of Avonlea's local landmarks. For example, she changes the name of Barry's Pond to The Lake of Shining Waters. Students work in groups to find a number of these names in the first few chapters.
- After groups list Anne's place names, discuss the names as a class and identify the descriptive language she used in the names.
- Each group chooses five different places in your school or town and comes up with a creative name using descriptive language.
- Groups present their names to the class.
- Alternative: Groups create a visual display illustrating the places with their new names. Display these in the hall for peers to see.
- Anne's imagination leads her to use a wide variety of vocabulary.
- Put students in groups.
- Each groups should look through the novel and identify five unfamiliar words.
- After looking up their words in the dictionary, groups choose a method to present their words to the class. For example, groups might create a poster illustrating their words or develop a short skit that explains the meaning of the words in context.
Creative Arts Activities
- Review the passages in the novel dealing with the various tea parties and social events Anne attends.
- Plan a tea party like Anne's tea party. Involve students in planning, decorating, food preparation, and entertainment.
- In one chapter, Anne and Diana invent a language where they can signal each other using candles at their bedroom windows.
- Students work in groups to create a signal language that they can use to pass and decode messages.
- Groups write or draw an explanation of their language.
- Groups exchange explanations and try to communicate a message using another group's method.
- Anne attends a poetry recitation.
- Encourage each student in your class to select and memorize a brief poem.
- Stage a poetry event. Invite other classes and school staff to listen to your students' poetry recitation.
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