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The Paper Bag Princess: A Lesson Plan & Team Building Activity

❶A few days after sharing Robert Munsch's The Paper Bag Princess , I like to bring the anti-fairy tale out again and say, "I had an interesting thought about the grammar in the title of this book last night.

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After the dragon came and smashed her castle, burned all her clothes and took Prince Ronald away, Elizabeth took action. She put on a paper bag and went out to find the dragon and rescue Prince Ronald. Her clever plan worked, but in the process she learned about Prince Ronald's true character and made the decision to walk away. After completing this lesson, students will.

After reading the story, The Paper Bag Princes , ask your class a series of questions. The dragon in the story claimed that he could burn up to ten forests with his fiery breath. He also claimed to be able to fly around the world in just ten seconds. In this activity, you will be encouraging creative writing with a bragging contest. Write the following phrases on the chalkboard and have the class come up with exaggerated responses. Invite your students to really stretch their imaginations and come up with the most ridiculous brags.

After the students have completed writing out their brags, arrange for a "brag-off", a contest to see which brags are the biggest and most creative. Set up two teams and appoint a panel of student judges.

Have the judges prepare pieces of paper with the numbers on them. After each team offers their brag, the judges hold up their score. Keep track of the results on the board as the contest continues, or appoint another student to hold this position. Tally up all the points at the end to see who wins this fun classroom contest.

Prizes to the winning teams or for participation are optional. The Paper Bag Princess Summary The story begins by introducing Elizabeth, the beautiful princess who lived in a castle and wore expensive princess clothes. Lesson Objectives After completing this lesson, students will Discuss what makes a good friend Discuss good choices Learn about conflict resolution Practice creative writing Work as a team Engage in a mock debate, practicing their public speaking skills.

What happened to Elizabeth's castle? How did she find the dragon? How did Princess Elizabeth defeat the dragon? Students have a hard time identifying parts-of-speech, but if you ask students what part-of-speech a "paper bag" is, surprisingly most of them recognize that it's a noun. In Robert Munsch's charming picture book, The Paper Bag Princess , we see the noun--paper bag--used as an interesting adjective in the story's title, and this allows us to discuss how specific nouns can become interesting adjectives in the hands of skilled writers.

After creating a list of interesting story titles they'd be willing to explore further during an upcoming writer's workshop day, students select one or two of their best titles and illustrate a "future scene" from the story they are envisioning in their heads.

This all happens in students' notebooks. On a future writer's workshop day, students can be invited to re-visit this page in their notebooks and use its ideas to begin a new story. Students who really like creating this page of potential story titles can also be encouraged to go through the page-building process a second time, creating twice as many potential story titles in their writer's notebooks.

A few days after sharing Robert Munsch's The Paper Bag Princess , I like to bring the anti-fairy tale out again and say, "I had an interesting thought about the grammar in the title of this book last night. Normally, I'd say paper bag is a noun; it certainly is if you just say, 'My lunch is in a paper bag today. I thought I'd let you work with a partner this morning to see if you could come up with five other possible story titles where paper bag is serving as an adjective in front of another noun.

Here are some examples to get your students started, if they need a little jolt:. Have students work in partnerships to create five interesting Paper-Bag-as-an-Adjective Titles. Celebrate their most creative ideas by putting them on a chart that can be brought out again. Challenge students to listen for interesting noun phrases over the next twenty-four hours where a noun is being used as an adjective.

Here is some my students brought back to class the next day:. If possible, share the button-pressing game below with your students. If you can project this screen in your classroom and do a whole class demo, that works nicely, but you can also--on a future computer lab day--have students come to this address and individually press the buttons, recording titles they serendiptiously create on a piece of scratch paper.

What I want my kids to do when they start pressing buttons is to--first--laugh a lot at the silliness of the random words coming together and the to--second--begin to see possible , unique story titles they actually would be willing to write during my writer's workshops. As they press the buttons, I make sure I am throwing out the following grammatical terms and that they are using them with each other correctly: Can you start an original story with this title? In my writer's workshop, most of my students' ideas for their independent writing begins in their writer's notebooks.

If you have never established a writer's notebook requirement for your students, be sure to read over WritingFix's Writer's Notebook Resource Page , and if you can, get yourself a copy of Ralph Fletcher's A Writer's Notebook: Unlocking the Writer Within You. This little advice guide from Ralph pictured, at right is a constantly-referred-to text in my classroom, especially in the first few months that we're setting up our notebooks. Unlike a journal, which contains daily thoughts and ramblings, a writer's notebook is a place where students 'save' quality ideas for future writing that occur to them; the ideas they save are specific to writing the students would be willing to do during an upcoming writer's workshop block.

I require my students to make their notebooks very visual, incorporating stickers, cut-outs, and original drawings inspired by my Mr. Stick character , which I introduce them to in the first week of school. This lesson's notebook page is a good opportunity to have students start recording academic language nouns, adjectives alongside ideas for writing.

But they need to see a model. I believe it so very important to have your own version of this notebook page assignment that you can show your students. Just below, you will find mine, which you can certainly claim as your own, but I'm including it here as my attempt to inspire you to create your own. Your students will be incredibly inspired to do a better job with this notebook spread if they see your creative attempt to do the same assignment. I usually have my students pencil sketch a rough draft of what their whole-class assigned notebook page will look like, recorded on a piece of scratch paper, before they print it neatly and add color in their actual notebook.

This gives them an opportunity to check their spelling before committing their ideas to the actual notebook. At left, is the frame I used when designing my own notebook page for this lesson. I am not so strict as to say all my students' pages need to look exactly like mine; I encourage creativity provided the students capture the "bare minimum requirements" of the page. In this case, students had to have seven nouns-as-adjectives next to seven nouns, then had to illustrate their two favorites from that list.

For this, I asked students to create a "movie in your mind scene" from both favorite titles they chose.

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In Robert Munsch's charming picture book, The Paper Bag Princess, we see the noun--paper bag--used as an interesting adjective in the story's title, and this allows us to discuss how specific nouns can become interesting adjectives in the hands of . Elizabeth only has a paper bag to cover herself. Needless to say, Elizabeth, now the Paper Bag Princess, goes after the dragon. She .