School Improvement in Maryland

Using the State Curriculum: Reading/ELA, Grade 5

Reading/ELA | Informational | Literary | Writing | Language | Listening | Speaking

Advanced/Gifted and Talented: An advanced/gifted and talented tool is an idea for a complex, multi-step instructional task that requires students to apply knowledge and skills of multiple objectives that support one indicator. Tasks require students to interpret, analyze, and evaluate text at an appropriate level of complexity and embed a variety of differentiation strategies to challenge advanced readers. Many of these strategies and activities can be adapted for use with all students.

Standard 3.0 Comprehension of Literary Text

Indicator 7. Identify and describe the author's use of language

Objective d. Identify and explain figurative language that contributes to meaning

Other Objectives Addressed

a.Identify and explain how the use of dialogue contributes to a story
b.Identify and explain specific words and phrases that contribute to meaning
e.Identify and explain language that appeals to the senses and feelings

Instructional Task

The students will identify and describe the author's use of language in historical fiction. The students will assume the roles of lexicographers and create an historical fiction dictionary of language that contributes to the authenticity of the historical time period in the text. Students will share their dictionaries with other students to use when they are reading that same text (authentic product).

Development of Task

  1. Students will read a selection of historical fiction at an appropriate level of complexity, such as Johnny Tremain by Esther Forbes.
  2. The teacher will model how the author's use of language contributes to the authenticity of the historical setting. For example, the author may use idioms such as "hold your tongue" to make the character's dialogue sound historically authentic.
  3. The students will identify examples of the author's use of language including dialect, idioms, colloquialisms, figurative language, words that create mood, and historical allusions. Students may use the chart "Author's Use of Language in Historical Fiction" to organize their ideas (Objectives a,b,d,e). Students will explain how each example contributes to understanding the historical period (analysis).
  4. The teacher will introduce the concept of lexicography, the editing or making of a dictionary. Students may want to read about America's first lexicographer, Noah Webster, who published his Compendious Dictionary of the English Language in 1806 (verbal-linguistic intelligence).
  5. Students will review a current dictionary in order to identify the organizational pattern and the parts of a dictionary entry.
  6. Students will decide which examples of the author's use of language are most effective in creating the historical authenticity of the text (evaluation).
  7. Students will create a dictionary of historical terms to include in their own "compendious" dictionaries of the English language (synthesis).

Author's Use of Language in Historical Fiction

Author's Use of LanguageExample in storyHow does this add to my understanding of the historical period?
figurative language
words that create mood
historical allusion
Resources for Objective 3.A.7.d:
Lesson Seeds | ADVANCED/G-T |