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Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Book Project - Woods Runner

We recently finished reading the book Woods Runner by Gary Paulsen as a class.  I love reading this book as we study the American Revolution in Social Studies!  It is a great example of how the war impacted those who were not part of the main cities or those taking the side of Patriot/Loyalist.

Samuel and his family live in the woods and are pretty removed from the everyday activities taking place in the big cities in regards to the conflicts between the colonists and Britain.  Then his parents are taken and he is thrown into the world of war, danger and fear.  I really like this book because every chapter is followed by a non-fiction page that explains a topic that comes up in the story (weapons, Hessians, jails, disease and illnesses, war orphans etc...)

The kids LOVED this book! I gave the kids several projects to choose from as an end of book project.  My class loves "projects" and choices, so they loved this assignment.

Several kids made ABC books about Woods Runner.  They had to make a page for each letter of the alphabet that explained a part of the book that started with that letter.

Here is one of the examples:
Inside the book

The books turned out so creative and I was impressed with the different ideas the kids came up with for each letter.  This project really gave them a chance to think back on many different parts of the book.

Several other kids chose to make a board game.  Requirements for this project were:  the game had to involve question cards related to parts of the book, it had to have written directions, it needed to be colorful, and they had to be able to explain it to their classmates so they could play the game.

Here are a couple of examples:
 In this game the players had to travel through the woods to try to get rescue Samuels parents.  Along the way they had to answer questions to avoid being captured by the British, the Hessians, or being delayed by weather, illness or other events.
This game had images of some famous artwork that shows events from the American Revolution (creative!).  On the red spaces they had to answer questions from the book about the British, on the blue spaces they had to answer questions from the book about the Patriots, and on the white spaces they had to answer a variety of trivia questions about the book.  I love how they connected the colors to the two sides!

One student chose to make a diorama.  
The diorama is showing Samuel in the woods as he is traveling to try to find his parents.  I love the trees!  They are made of circles of paper folded up and down then glued to real twigs.  How creative!

I like to give my kids alternative ways to show what they know or to wrap up a book or unit.  5th graders love to be creative and come up with such great ideas!

What kinds of projects have you had your class do at the end of a book?

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