Sunday, November 27, 2016

Figuring out Fractured Fairytales!

Maybe it was my successful observation last week, maybe it was the sweet notes I found on my desk to remind me why I LOVE my job, perhaps it was the 3 cups of coffee I just finished drinking...but boy, oh I FIRED UP about fractured fairy tales!!! Fairy tales for a lot of my students are uncharted water. I was blown away at exactly how many of my kiddos weren't sure what constitutes a fairy tale. So, I decided to back it up and get back to the basics!

To kick off our fractured fairy tale unit, I had my students work in their tables reading a classic fairy tale together (some of the fairy tales I used lean more towards the way of folk tales). After having each group read the fairy tale together I had each table create a poster that showcased the story elements in their specific story. Here are a few snaps from the FUN!

Sooo...after I began checking in on my groups I had one of those teacher moments...y'know those moments when you realize..."OH...I completely over estimated my students' schema, ability, and experience with said topic..." I could not believe how many of my kiddos were confused by "story elements" ...many had not a clue what I was looking for! Even when prompted with words like, setting or plot I was greeted with many blank stares. So, as my wheels began turning we enjoyed sharing our creative posters!

That night I went home and whipped up a quick fairy tale power-point that took a closer look at the specific story elements I was searching for the day before. A sense of relief started pouring over as little light bulbs across my classroom flickered on! PHEW! Check out my power-point here!

OH...did I mention how our grade level's reading and writing units are currently 100% aligned?! So, while we're studying fairy tales in reader's workshop as part of a traditional literature unit, we're also writing adaptations, or fractured fairy tales for classics in writer's workshop! Okay...I'm clearly WAY excited about the alignment...but we all know that this doesn't always happen across content areas.

What better way to study story elements and practice writing adaptations for classic fairy tales than through a fractured fairy tale study?! I would spend a day reading and studying an original fairy tale, followed by a day reading and studying the fractured fairy tale, while comparing and contrasting the two versions (a HUGE 3rd grade standard). My absolute FAVORITE fairy tale and adaptation study was comparing and contrasting The Three Billy Goats Gruff with The Three Silly Billies.

Okay...can I just quickly say how UNDERRATED Margie Palatini is?! Love LOVE her hysterical books! We had so much fun comparing and contrasting the similarities and differences between these two tales. I created two graphic organizers that I had my students glue in their response journals. These pages definitely helped organize our thinking as we studied the two versions. Grab and enjoy them for FREE here

We are still studying fairy tales and we've begun writing our very own fractured fairy tales. Stay tuned for my fractured fairy tale literacy unit complete with resources for both reading and writing! :) Do you study fairy tales and fractured fairy tales?? I would love to hear more ideas!