Lessons & Units :: Point of View 4th Grade Unit

Lesson 1: First Person and Third Person Objective, Limited, and Omniscient Points of View

Lesson Plan

Learning Goal
Identify and describe first person, third person objective, third person limited, and third person omniscient points of view.
Duration
Approximately 45-50 minutes
Necessary Materials
Provided: Direct Teaching and Guided Practice Worksheet, Direct Teaching and Guided Practice (Teacher’s Copy), Independent Practice Worksheet, Independent Practice Worksheet (Teacher’s Copy), Reference Sheet for Teachers and Students
Not Provided: N/A

Teacher Tip: Third grade point of view lessons break down the difference between first person vs. third person in more detail. Please teach this lesson beforehand if students are struggling with understanding the distinction between the two points of view.

  • Teacher Modeling

    will explain that point of view is the perspective from which a story is told to the reader. I will tell students that we will be learning four different types of point of view.


    I will introduce first person point of view by explaining that the narrator is telling the story and is a character in the story. I will discuss how sentences written in first person usually use the pronouns “I,” “me,” and “my.”


    I will introduce the third person point of view by explaining that the narrator is telling the story from someone else’s viewpoint and the narrator is an observer - not a character in the story. I will discuss how sentences in third person usually use the pronouns, “he,” “she,” and “they.”


    I will further explain that there are three types of third person point of view: objective, limited, or omniscient. I will explain the difference between the different types of third person points of view is the extent to which the narrator is aware of the characters' thoughts and feelings. In the third person objective point of view the narrator does not reveal what any character thinks or feels. In the third person limited point of view, the narrator knows the thoughts and feelings of one character whereas in third person omniscient point of view the narrator knows the thoughts and feelings of all the characters.


    I will provide the following examples to help students distinguish the difference between the four different points of view.


    Example 1: It was a warm summer day and I was playing jump rope with my friends Ann and Beth. I have been practicing all week and have gotten very good at double dutch. My little brother Peter walked over to us and asked if he could play too. I thought, “He’s too little. He’ll just mess up,” so I told him, “No” and he walked away.


    This passage is written in the first person point of view. The narrator is telling the story and is a character in the story. The narrator uses pronouns such as “I” and “my”.


    Example 2: It was a warm summer day and Sarah was playing jump rope with her friends Ann and Beth. She had been practicing all week and gotten very good at double dutch. Sarah’s little brother Peter walked over to the girls and asked if he could play too but the girls told him “No.”


    This passage is told in the third person point of view since the narrator is not a character in the story. You’ll notice the narrator uses pronouns such as “her,” “she,” and “he”. This example demonstrates a third person objective point of view because the narrator tells what happened without revealing any of the characters’ thoughts or feelings.


    Example 3: It was a warm summer day and Sarah was excited to be playing jump rope with her friends Ann and Beth. She had been practicing all week and had gotten very good at double dutch. Sarah’s little brother Peter walked over to the girls and asked if he could play too. Sarah thought, “He’s too little. He’ll just mess up,” so she told him, “No.” Peter walked away.


    This passage is told in the third person point of view since the narrator is not a character in the story. You’ll notice the narrator uses pronouns such as “her,” “she,” and “he.” This example is third person limited because the narrator only tells the reader how Sarah feels and what she is thinking.


    Example 4: It was a warm summer day and Sarah was excited to be playing jump rope with her friends Ann and Beth. She had been practicing all week and had gotten very good at double dutch. As Beth was twirling the jump rope she thought to herself, “We should compete in next weekend’s competition!” Sarah’s little brother Peter walked over to the girls and asked if he could play too. Sarah thought, “He’s too little. He’ll just mess up,” so she told him, “No.” Feeling sad, Peter walked away.

     

    This passage is told in the third person point of view since the narrator is not a character in the story. You’ll notice the narrator uses pronouns such as “her”, “she”, and “he”. However, this example is third person omniscient because the narrator reveals the thoughts and feelings of several characters including Sarah, Beth, and Peter.

     

    I will read the first paragraph on the “Look Who’s Talking!" worksheet (see Direct Teaching and Guided Practice Student Worksheet, provided in the Texts & Materials section) and model how to identify the clues that help me determine the point of view (character’s name is used, narrator knows his thoughts). A Teacher’s Answer Guide and a Reference Sheet with definitions are also provided.

  • Think Check

    Ask: How did I identify the point of view? Students should respond that you read the text and thought about who was telling the story and whether or not the narrator knew the feelings and thoughts of any, one, or all of the characters.

  • Guided Practice

    will read the rest of the paragraphs on the “Look Who’s Talking!" worksheet and determine the point of view of each paragraph. We will identify and discuss the clues that help us determine the point of view in each paragraph.

  • Independent Practice

    will determine the point of view of each paragraph on the “Determine the Point of View” worksheet. You will identify the clues in each paragraph that help you determine the point of view. (Student Independent Practice is provided in the Texts & Materials section.)

Build Student Vocabulary eternity

Tier 2 Word: eternity
Contextualize the word as it is used in the story He had 45 minutes until lunch! It seemed like an eternity.
Explain the meaning student-friendly definition) An eternity is a period of time that seems to last forever, or does actually last forever. If you say that it feels like it will be an eternity until your birthday, that means it feels like you are going to have to wait forever until your birthday!
Students repeat the word Say the word eternity with me: eternity.
Teacher gives examples of the word in other contexts Scientists believe that the universe will be in motion for eternity. I waited for the bus for what seemed like an eternity this morning – I don’t know why it took so long!
Students provide examples Can you give an example of an event that feels like it is an eternity away? Students should say, “______ feels like it is an eternity away because _________________.”
Students repeat the word again. What word are we talking about? eternity
Additional Vocabulary Words grumbled

Build Student Background Knowledge

After reading Teaching Example #2 on the Chart, explain that in some apartment buildings, the walls can be thin, so your neighbors can hear what is going on in your apartment. Tell your students that when walls are filled with something called "insulation" it helps to keep sound and heat in one place. When there is not insulation in the walls, it is easy to hear what your neighbors are saying and doing.

Texts & Materials

Standards Alignment

(To see all of the ReadWorks lessons aligned to your standards, click here.)

Comments

Thank you all for your thoughtful comments regarding this lesson. As you may know, we are not only continuously adding new content, but also revising the existing content on our site. We have revised the unit to address the raised issues. Thank you again.
Yes, I agree, Limited is knowing the main character or one character's thoughts. Objective is not knowing any character thoughts. The assignmen/assessmentt did not match my teaching.
The Point of View stated in the lesson is Third Person Objective Point of View. The narrator tells “his” or “her” story and does not reveal any character’s thoughts or feelings. Characters may reveal their feelings through actions or dialogue. There are three 3rd Person Point of View-- Objective, Limited and omniscient. Just curious if anyone knows if we are to teach all three 3rd person Point of View in 4th grade.
I was wondering if anyone else noticed 3rd person objective as it is taught in this lesson.
I am in Georgia using the CCGPS and we are not required to teach any specifics on 3rd person p.o.v., so I am using this lesson, but omitting the limited and omniscient aspects. As far as I can tell, they just need to know the difference between 1st and 3rd person p.o.v.
Thanks for all the great comments, everyone. We are taking a close look at this lesson with revisions to follow.
The definitions for third person limited and third person omniscient point of views are incorrect on the Direct Teaching and Guided Practice Reference Sheet. See the website link below for clarification: http://fictionwriting.about.com/od/glossary/g/ptofview.htm Third person limited is when the narrator knows only the thoughts and feelings of a single character, while other characters are presented only externally. Third person omniscient is a method of storytelling in which the narrator knows the thoughts and feelings of all of the characters in the story, as opposed to third person limited, which adheres closely to one character's perspective.
Yes, I agree. I did email the site and was told that they would make the corrections within the day and would be up live. However, I recently checked and do not believe the matter has been rectified.
I have always taught that third person limited was when the reader knows only one character's thoughts and feelings. This lesson teaches it as no character's thoughts and feelings. I love this lesson, but it doesn't follow the standards the way that we teach it. Thoughts?
This website helps me keep reading fun and enjoyable! I am able to bring high interest articles to my students and not bore them with the basal stories! I also love the explicit instruction lesson plans! THANK YOU!
A friend shared this website recently. It is a wealth of information!
Thanks for such a well thought out lesson. I appreciate that the lesson is modeled after good lesson plans!

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