Lesson Plan

Holes Introduction

Students will begin reading "Holes" by Louis Sachar. In order to develop deep comprehension of the novel, students will complete before reading activities in preparation.
Jessica R.
Classroom teacher
Meyersdale Area Middle School
Meyersdale, United States
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My Grades 6, 7
My Subjects English Language Arts

Students will be able to...

  • Analyze the front and back covers of the novel
  • Understand how to use Character Tracker and Chapter Tracker
  • Discuss knowledge of desert habitats
  • Develop vocabulary
English Language Arts
Grades 7
All Notes
Teacher Notes
Student Notes

1 Hook/Attention Getter

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Teachers will need to distribute copies of "Holes" and worksheet asking questions about the cover. The following questions should be included:

1. What do you think is the significance of the book's title?

2. By looking at the picture, what do you believe the book may be about?

3. Read the book's description on the back cover. Why do you think the boys are digging holes?

After the students answer the questions, discuss answers and make predictions. After the discussion is over, show the movie trailer to "Holes" on YouTube. The technology of the YouTube video will be used as a way to create excitement for the upcoming book analysis and movie-watching party. As well, YouTube will be used as a teaser to explain that the movie and book are very different, which will lead us to create a Venn diagram to analyze the similarities and differences.

Student Instructions

Work independently to analyze the book cover of "Holes." Answer the questions on the worksheet. Prepare to discuss your answers and make predictions.

2 Guided Practice

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Lead a discussion about the desert habitat. Have students share what they know about the desert and have them create a note on Padlet to show their knowledge. Padlet is the technology of choice for this step in the lesson because it allows the teacher to see all of the students' responses. As well, students are able to see others' responses. The use of technology, in the form of Padlet, will allow students to lead a more in-depth discussion than if one or two students answered. If the students neglect to add information, the teacher can add anything she/he knows. Be sure to discuss weather/temperature, animals, plants, etc.

Student Instructions

Together, we are going to discuss what we know about the desert. What do you know about the desert? What can you tell me about the animals and plants that live there? Write your answers in your Padlet note.

3 Direct Instruction - Vocabulary

Activity: Conversing

Distribute vocabulary words for chapters one through five. The students will need to study these for an upcoming test.

Student Instructions

Study and learn these vocabulary words. You will be tested on them in the future. Study them for three minutes. You will then complete a Type 2 Writing activity (Collins Writing Program) to write four of the words correctly in sentences.

4 Wrap-Up

Activity: Investigating

Teachers will now go over the Character Tracker and Chapter Tracker. Students will use these worksheets throughout the reading of the entire novel. The Character Tracker will record a character's real name, nickname, and description. The Chapter Tracker will number the chapter, describe the setting (to help students understand when they are reading in the present or in a flashback), and write a summary of the chapter.

Student Instructions

You will need to have these sheets in class each time we meet. They will help you understand the novel better as we read. For the Character Tracker, we will fill it in every time we meet a new character. For the Chapter Tracker, after we finish reading a chapter, we will complete it to understand what it was about.