literature

"Huckleberry Finn" | Ken Burns: Mark Twain

Icon: 
Streaming icon

Huckleberry Finn is one of Mark Twain's most beloved characters, and the book his masterpiece. Twain's novel was told from a southern perspective, and took away any romanticism with slavery.

Rounding up the Rhymes | English Language Arts Strategies for Students with Cognitive Disabilities

Icon: 
Streaming icon

In this self-contained upper elementary classroom, the teacher selects a familiar text that the class has already read for meaning. The class then reads the text to identify pairs of rhyming words within the story. The teacher marked pages of the book that had rhyming words prior to reading and reminds students to pay careful attention to the pages she has marked. As the teacher reads, the students identify the rhyming pairs and the teacher writes them on the board. After finishing the book, the teacher guides the students in identifying the rhyming pairs that have the same spelling pattern. Together they cross out pairs that sound the same but do not look the same. The students are then given new words that share a spelling pattern with one of the rhyming pairs. They must first identify the rhyming pair that matches the new word and then use the rhyming pair to help them read the new word. The video demonstrates effective strategies for engaging students with significant cognitive disabilities in literacy instruction.

Dog Fight

Icon: 
Streaming icon

You can use this video for Session 9 of the MARTHA SPEAKS Reading Buddies program. Students watch the video, in which Martha and Skits can’t find a way to share a toy, and then T.D. and Alice start bickering. After watching, buddy pairs talk about the episode, play a Truce! game, read a children’s book together, and write in their journal. Prior to using this resource for Reading Buddies, be sure you have read the complete introductory materials in the MARTHA SPEAKS Reading Buddies Program Guide.

Key vocabulary: bicker, negotiate, quarrel, truce

MONTANA SHAKES! WordSmashing: Language Workshop

Icon: 
Streaming icon

Your elementary students will love Shakespeare! Create, learn, and pantomime new words! Shakespeare loved to create new words and to play creatively with the meaning of words, so can you.  This workshop is based on the MT SHAKES! 2016 adaptation of a Midsummer Night's Dream. This workshop is designed to introduce students to the creative capacity of words.  Students will:

  • Identify examples of and explore meaning in figurative language found in A Midsummer Night's Dream
  • Ask and answer questions about words and details in the text
  • Explore the relationship between words and their sounds
  • Investigate the importance of word choice (poetry and rhythm of words and their sounds)

Mole and the Baby Bird

Icon: 
Streaming icon

In this story from Between the Lions, Mole discovers the best way to help a baby bird that has fallen out of its nest.

The Lake of Shining Waters | L.M. Montgomery's Anne of Green Gables: The Good Stars

Icon: 
Streaming icon

Anne and Matthew take the trip from the station past Barry’s Pond, which Anne renames the Lake of Shining Waters, and Anne gets her first glimpse at her new home in this excerpt from L.M. Montgomery's Anne of Green Gables: The Good Stars, based on L. M. Montgomery’s classic book.

Anne Says Her Prayers | L.M. Montgomery's Anne of Green Gables: The Good Stars

Icon: 
Streaming icon

Listen to Anne’s first bedtime prayer as she tries to please Marilla in this quietly humorous scene from L. M. Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables: The Good Stars. This clip provides some background about the importance of religion in the Victorian era, as well as an excellent opportunity to talk about the eccentricities of form. Discern and debate the differences between a letter and a prayer, and decide what makes this one of the funniest from L. M. Montgomery’s classic book.

Deborah Heiligman

Icon: 
Streaming icon

Deborah Heiligman writes fiction and nonfiction, for kids of all ages. She has written more than 26 books, including the acclaimed Holidays Around the World series. Her fascination with the marriage of Charles and Emma Darwin led her on a great research adventure that brought her to the Galapagos Islands and the Darwin home in England as well as deep inside their diaries and letters. Her 2009 book, Charles and Emma: The Darwins' Leap of Faith was nominated as a National Book Award Finalist.

Lorraine Hansberry | A Raisin in the Sun: Theater as Protest

Icon: 
Streaming icon

Discover how art and drama can be used to address difficult societal issues in this video from the American Masters film Lorraine Hansberry: Sighted Eyes/Feeling Heart. Learn how critics and the public responded to the controversial messages about assimilation and identity in Lorraine Hansberry’s iconic play A Raisin in the Sun. Support materials include discussion questions and an activity which allows students to create works of art and take a stance on issues affecting the world today.

Success, by Ted Kooser

Icon: 
Streaming icon

Ted Kooser reads his poem "Success" at the Dodge Poetry Festival in this video segment from Poetry Everywhere. Kooser is known for chronicling small changes in everyday environments, especially in Nebraska. For decades he woke at 4:30 or 5:00 a.m. every day to write for a couple of hours before going to his insurance job. He believes that simply making time for writing gives him the opportunity to create good work. This poem relates to his personal experience of suddenly becoming well known.

For a biography of poet Ted Kooser, please visit the Poetry Foundation Web site.

Pages