Teacher Guide

Teacher’s Guide

The Girl with 35 Names, DJ Colbert6th Grade

Lesson: Setting the Scene

Chapter 1 “Molly”

Summary of the goals of the lesson:

This introductory lesson on atmosphere and setting for chapter 1 of the novel asks students to pay close attention to the author’s use of language to evoke place setting for the world of Molly. The lesson combines both close reading and detailed analysis of specific language as well as broader examination of tone and narrative style.

Guiding Prompts/Questions:

Place setting is crucial for establishing atmosphere in novels. Have students take the time to really engage with the author’s stylistics and language. At this stage, we’re also encouraging the students to develop an early love and appreciation for descriptive writing, which will support more rigorous engagement with concepts like plot, storyline, and dramatic pacing/tension later in the novel.

Learning Outcomes:

Students learn literary concepts and devices such as setting, evoking an atmosphere, figurative language and tone. Students also begin to practice literary analysis as they move between close reading/details at the language level to extrapolate broader meaning of a passage or chapter.

CCSS Alignments:

This lesson combines Key Ideas and Details, Craft and Structure, and Integration of Knowledge and Ideas from CCSS. It also expands into the C3 Framework with connection to Russian history, mathematics (geometry), science (food science and culture) and thinking across disciplines by incorporating an art project for the student to do. Additionally, it features the first section of a recurring curriculum component, namely, “Molly’s Superpowers In the World.” This section will highlight questions around civics and citizenry, and ask students to think critically about issues of ethics and morality in community and the world, alongside Molly’s own self-discovery and growth.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY alignments included: RL.6.1, RL.6.2, RL.6.4, RL.6.5.