- large pieces of chart paper
- markers, crayons, paint
- blocks, toys, and other items to create "scenery" and "characters"
Objective: Children will learn about story sequence, setting, and characters when they create story maps.
- After you've shared a story with children, discuss some of the elements of the story with them. Where did the story take place? Was there more than one place? Who was the story about? Who else? What happened first in the story? What happened next?
- Move furniture to create open floor space. Tape one or more large pieces of chart paper to the floor. Place a copy of the book at the top of the chart paper. Explain to children that they are going to create a map of the story.
- Invite children to use art materials to create the environment for the story. If the story takes place in several different locations, help children create their drawings in a way that utilizes the right amount of space.
- Read the story again, focusing on the setting. Invite children to work together to draw what you have described. Children can also use blocks and toys to create three-dimensional structures on the locations.
- After children have finished creating the map, invite them to take turns using dolls, figures, or stuffed toys to walk through the story while you read. If the map is large enough, children can "walk through" the stories themselves!
- Some books, such as Rosie's Walk by Pat Hutchins or The Little Engine That Could by Watty Piper, deal with "journeys," so they are fairly easy to map. For other books, you might create an environment for the characters to move around in. You can use a story map to encourage children to add to a story-what might Little Miss Spider have seen at Sunny Patch School in David Kirk's Little Miss Spider at Sunny Patch School?
Curriculum Connection: PROBLEM SOLVING
How Do I Get There? Place a large cardboard box, toy, or chair at one end of the classroom. Ask children to draw a map from the door of the classroom to the box, toy, or chair. Invite children to share their maps with one another and take turns following their classmates' maps' directions.
The Gingerbread Man by Karen Schmidt
Me on the Map by Joan Sweeny
Where Do I Live? by Neil Chesanow