- Third Grade
- 70 minutes
- Standards: W.3.3.B
Give students a chance to experience a different point of view! This fANTastic lesson on narrative style turns young readers into characters of Chris Van Allsburg's Two Bad Ants.
Students will be able to identify characteristics of both first and third person narrative styles.
Introduction (10 minutes)
- Ask the class to share what they know about ants.
- Display the cover of Two Bad Ants and ask students what they think the story will be about.
- As they share their thoughts, have them talk about things on the front cover that may have led to their predictions.
- Read aloud Two Bad Ants.
Explicit Instruction/Teacher Modeling (15 minutes)
- Refer back to the predictions that were made. Give students an opportunity to reflect on them and compare them to the actual story.
- Ask students to recall the adventures the ants embarked on. Some examples you can bring up are swimming in the brown lake and climbing near the waterfall.
- Record the main events on the chart paper.
- Explain that stories can be told in different ways. A first person narrative is told from the point of view of a character. A third person narrative is told from the point of view of someone outside the story.
- Ask the class what they think about the story's narrative style. Some great guiding questions are: Which point of view are these events told in? What evidence from the story led you to your answer?
- Label the T-chart with "Point of View" on the left and "Evidence" on the right. Fill the columns with student responses.
- Tell students that you're going to pretend to be one of the ants. Demonstrate a first-person account of something that the ants did.
- Explain that a first-person narrative contains descriptions of things that "I" or "we" do. A third-person narrative contains descriptions of things that "he," "she," "it," or "they" do.
Guided Practice/Interactive Modeling (10 minutes)
- Show the class the My View as an Ant handout. Model the process of filling it out by describing, in first person, one of the ants' experiences in terms of all five senses.
- Write down your descriptions on the board, and circle all of the first-person pronoun clues (me, my, us, our, etc.).
Independent Working Time (20 minutes)
- Distribute a My View as an Ant handout to each student.
- Display the T-chart; ask students to refer to it and choose an event to write about for the handout. Allow them to view your book if they have trouble remembering the scenes.
- Have students work on the handouts independently. Monitor them and provide support when needed.
- Enrichment: Students who complete their My View as an Ant handout early can be assigned the First Person Narrative worksheet.
- Support: Provide visual support for completing the handout by displaying images from the book. For struggling students, reduce the number of senses they need to write for to three.
An interactive whiteboard can be used to display the illustrations from Two Bad Ants.
Assessment (10 minutes)
- Assess students' degrees of comprehension as you monitor them, and think about any feedback that you can give.
- Review their handouts later to gauge their understanding of the lesson content.
Review and Closing (10 minutes)
- Ask for volunteers to share some of their descriptions with the rest of the class.
- Collect the handouts. If there's enough time remaining, read aloud a few of the students' descriptions and have the class guess which scenes they're associated with.