Lesson Plan:

Setting, Characters, and Events in Goldilocks and the Three Bears

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August 19, 2015
by Sharon Schellenberg

Learning Objectives

The students will be able to identify the setting, characters, and events in a short story.


Introduction (5 minutes)

  • Gather the students.
  • Load the interactive story. Choose the “READ BY MYSELF” option.
  • Pause the story on the front cover and invite the students to describe where the house is, who is by the house, and what the bears and little girl are doing.
  • Focus the lesson by saying, “You just described the setting, characters and an event in this story! Every good story needs these things!”

Explicit Instruction/Teacher Modeling (10 minutes)

  • Proceed with the interactive story.
  • Pause two or three times to discuss the story elements.
  • Ask the students if the story would be as good if it was about Goldilocks and the three rocks.
  • Explain that interesting characters make stories exciting and fun.
  • Ask the students if the story would change if the setting were different.
  • Discuss the events in the story.
  • Ask the students if the story would be better or worse if Goldilocks did not show up.
  • Help the students understand that without Goldilocks, the story could have been very boring.
  • When the story is finished, use a sheet of large chart paper to create a chart with three columns labeled "Characters: Who?," "Setting: Where?," and "Events: What happened?"
  • Ask the students to list who was in the story.
  • Explain that the characters are who the story is about.
  • Write the names of the characters in large bold colors. Draw simple pictures with the names if possible.
  • Fill in the setting and events column in the same way.
  • Explain that the setting is where and when the story happened.
  • Explain that the events are the important things that happened in the story.
  • Break this part down into events that happened in the beginning, middle, and end.
  • Load the Parts of a Story Song video on the interactive whiteboard. Listen and sing along with your students.

Guided Practice/Interactive Modeling (10 minutes)

  • Give each student three note cards and a marker.
  • Tell them to label their cards with a big C for character, a big S for setting, and a big E for event.
  • Explain to the students that you will name something from the story.
  • Tell the students that they will decide if you are naming a character, setting, or event by holding up their labeled cards.
  • Proceed with the following prompts: a little girl, a baby bear, the woods, the house, broke a chair, cooked some porridge, took a walk, a mother bear, took a bite of porridge, fell asleep, ran upstairs, papa bear, and ran home.
  • As you prompt the students, support and reteach as needed.

Independent Working Time (10 minutes)

  • Distribute the Goldilocks Scene coloring page.
  • Tell the students to label the coloring page with a big C for character, a big S for setting, and a big E for event.
  • Model how to do this by asking, “Is this the part where Goldilocks is sleeping? Is this when she broke the chair? What event is this?”
  • Dismiss the students to their work areas to label the page on their own. Encourage the students to color the page as they finish labeling.



  • Enrichment: Above level students may include the names of the characters with their labels. You may choose to provide spelling in a place where they can see or they may spell phonetically.
  • Support: Look for students who need support. Give them simple clues to guide them as they label their coloring page.


Assessment (5 minutes)

  • Give every student a chance to verbally contribute to the chart during explicit instruction.
  • Look for readiness to provide correct input.
  • Look for students who hesitate while playing the game during guided practice.
  • If students are holding up the wrong cards, explain the correct answer before moving on.
  • Continue playing this game until all or most students respond quickly.
  • During independent practice, walk around the room as the students work to check for understanding.
  • Pause and offer support to those who need it. Take note of students who need further instruction.

Review and Closing (5 minutes)

  • Invite the students to define the words "setting," "character," and "events."
  • Invite the students to tell a nearby friend their favorite event in the story.
  • Ask the students to tell the class their favorite character in the story.
  • Tell the students to think about a silly setting other than the house in the woods.
  • Invite the students to share their ideas with the class.

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