From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler Lesson Plan

Instructor: Sharon Linde

Sharon has a Masters of Science in Mathematics

Use this lesson plan after your students have finished reading 'From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler' by E.L. Konigsburg. Students will read a text lesson and work on summarizing skills, then apply concepts to an extension activity that showcases understanding.

Learning Objectives

After this lesson, students will be able to:

  • summarize From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg
  • cite textual evidence to support analysis of From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler


1 hour


Key Vocabulary

  • Michelangelo

Curriculum Standards

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.5.1

Quote accurately from a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text.

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.5.5

Explain how a series of chapters, scenes, or stanzas fits together to provide the overall structure of a particular story, drama, or poem.

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.5.5.a

Interpret figurative language, including similes and metaphors, in context.


  • In the book, Claudia and Jamie run away. As an opening hook, ask students to brainstorm three items they would take with them if they ran away. Give them time to think of their list, then write a paragraph describing the items and why they would take them.
  • Break students into small groups and allow them to share their answers, then briefly discuss together.
  • Tell students they will be working on summarizing skills for the novel From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, then distribute copies of the text lesson From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler Summary.
  • Instruct students to read the 'Running Away' section, then ask:
    • Where would you go if you ran away?
    • What do you think of Claudia and Jamie's idea for a place to go?
    • Why did Claudia and Jamie run away?
  • Now read the 'Settling In' and 'Excitement at the Museum' sections with students.
  • Divide students into partner pairs and distribute paper and colored pencils. Instruct students to create a timeline of events in the story. Demonstrate how to create a timeline if necessary.
  • As students work on their timelines, walk around to offer suggestions and guide learning. Encourage students to use our lesson and their texts for guidance.
  • When students are finished, allow them to share in small groups, then hang to display in the classroom.
  • Read the 'Lesson Summary' together, then have students take the lesson quiz to check for understanding.

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