Lesson Plan

It's Elementary! Storytelling in the Primary Grades

This App Flow engages younger students in the art of crafting stories.
August D.
Classroom teacher
Ridgewood Elementary School
Eureka, CA
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My Grades K
My Subjects English Language Arts, Math, Science, Social Studies, Arts
EdTech Mentor

Students will be able to...

  1. Describe major story elements
  2. Understand the processes used to create a story 
  3. Publish a digital story to be shared with classmates and/or on-line
English Language Arts
Grades Pre-K - 3
All Notes
Teacher Notes
Student Notes

1 Hook

This classic children's story book, adapted for the iPad, is as much a pleasure to read as it is to hear. Treating the read aloud the same as any picture book in the classroom will support the discussion held following the story. Ask students how this iPad story and a paper book are different, and how they are the same. Tell students they will help create and publish a digital story for others to read.

2 Direct Instruction

One of the first things an author must do before writing a story is come up with an idea. Define (or review) character, setting, conflict, and resolution (or more story elements depending in the age and writing experience of the students). Sharing this app in whole or small groups will illustrate one way to generate ideas. Have fun demonstrating how to use the virtual dice to create stories. Involve the students in shaping the stories using the dice. This activity can be repeated several time over many days for reinforcement.

3 Guided Practice

With many story ideas at the ready, use this versatile (and fun) story app to give your stories life. With dozens of settings, characters, and props, a many rich worlds can be created. Toontastic even breaks the story writing process into it's individual parts (e.g. setup, conflict, and resolution), making the creation process easy. Multiple stories can be created as a whole group, or small groups can each help create their own work to share with the class. When appropriate, the editing process can also be taught and practiced by revisiting previously created stories.

4 Independent Practice

Puppet Pals HD
Free, Free to Try

This simple to use app can be used by students to write and "perform" their own stories. After sharing the basic functions of the app, ask small groups or partners to create and then share their own stories. Story Dice can be used to generate ideas for each group, or the entire class can be given the same set of ideas to do with as they please. This app will allow students complete creative freedom, and may even give rise to the basic idea used to create a class story in the Wrap-Up activity.

5 Wrap-Up

Book Creator

Book Creator for IPad allows your class written story to come to life in the form of an iBook, which is easily shared with friends, family, and other students near and far. Drawing on the story creation experiences developed throughout this App Flow, guide students through the process of creating and publishing a collaborative story. Make sure to share the final product with an authentic audience on the classroom and/or school website!