Lessons & Units :: Sequence 4th Grade Unit

Lesson 2: Chronological Order of Events in a Story with a Flashback

Lesson Plan

Learning Goal
Identify the chronological order of events in a story with flashbacks.
Approximately 50 minutes
Necessary Materials
Provided: Guided and Independent Practice Passage, “Leaving Home”
Not Provided: Sentence strips, markers, index cards (approximately 10 per student)
  • Teacher Modeling

    will review the flashbacks that we identified in Tell Me a Story, Mama from Lesson 1. I will explain that while flashbacks help us understand the story better, it is sometimes challenging to identify the chronological order of the events in the story. Chronological order means ordering events in time order or “when” they happened. Today we are going to take stories with flashbacks and put the events in chronological order. We will do this by writing each important event from the story on an index card. We will then put the index cards in chronological order (or time order). This will look different from the order of events introduced in the book. I will model this strategy using Tell Me a Story, Mama by Angela Johnson. I will write each major event on a sentence strip and put the events in their correct chronological order. The order of events should be: 1.) The mother threw mud on the fence of the mean old lady who lived across the field. 2.) The mother found and kept a little puppy with no tail. 3.) The mother and her sister went on a train to go live with their Aunt Rosetta for a few months. 4.) Grandma cried when Mama moved away. 5.) The little girl’s friend Cory moved away, which made her cry. 6.) The little girl asks her mother to tell her stories about when she was a little girl.

    TIP: Another visual alternative would be to organize the chronological sequence of events along a timeline during the Direct Teaching.

  • Think Check

    Ask: How did I put events from the story in chronological order? Students should respond that you put main events on index cards and then ordered them by when they happened paying close attention that events in flashback come first in the sequence.

  • Guided Practice

    will read the passage “Leaving Home” (provided in Books and Passages) and will write each important event on an index card. We will identify which event comes first in chronological order (the first time the author moved was when he/she was four years old, to the suburbs). We will work together to determine the next two events from the passage (in chronological order). 1.) The next time the author moved was when he/she was in college. 2.) After college, the author moved to Colorado for a summer.

  • Independent Practice

    will put the rest of the important events on my index cards in chronological order.

    TIP: For the Independent Practice, have students write their name of the back of the index cards and bind the cards together in chronological order with a rubber band.

Build Student Vocabulary dormitory

Tier 2 Word: dormitory
Contextualize the word as it is used in the story The woman lived in a dormitory when she went to college.
Explain the meaning student-friendly definition) A dormitory is a building with many separate rooms for sleeping. When people move away from home to go to college, they often move into a dormitory and share a small room with a roommate.
Students repeat the word Say the word dormitory with me: dormitory.
Teacher gives examples of the word in other contexts A dormitory room for two people usually has two beds, two closets, two chests of drawers, and two desks and chairs. I shared my dormitory room with a terrible roommate. She was such a mess.
Students provide examples Do you think you would like to live in a dormitory? Why or why not? Tell us about it by saying, “I would or wouldn’t like to live in a dormitory because __________________.”
Students repeat the word again. What word are we talking about? dormitory
Additional Vocabulary Words subway, suburbs

Build Student Background Knowledge

After the completing the Guided Practice, trace the author's journey across the United States on a classroom map. Colorado, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Seattle, Washington, and New York. Share a unique fact about each location as you mark the author's journey.

Texts & Materials

Standards Alignment

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