Last updated: 1/31/2017


NYS Common Core-ELA & Literacy- Grade 05 - Quarter 1

How are people transformed through their relationships with others? 

What are the characteristics or elements that cause a piece of literature to endure? 

How do literary elements impact the meaning and understanding of a story? 

How are themes impacted through literary elements? 

Understanding Literary Elements

(5 weeks)


Suggested Texts:

  1. Crash by Jerry Spinelli

  2. There's a Boy in the Girls Bathroom by Louis Sachar

  3. Informational Text: Letters to a Bullied Girl: Messages of Healing & Hope by Olivia Gardner, Emily Buder, & Sarah Buder

  4. Or any other age-appropriate book that focuses on the theme of bullying.


  1. Using the novels Crash by Jerry Spinelli and There's a Boy in the Girl's Bathroomby Louis Sachar, write a four-paragraph essay that compares and contrasts the characters in the two books and explains how the characters in the stories respond to the problems of bullying. Make sure to include specific details from the novels.

  2. Evaluate the essays using a 6+1 Traits Rubric, such as the one available here.
(1) RL.5.4 Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative language such as metaphors and similes.

Vocabulary addressed throughout Literary Elements Unit

Students will be able to:

  1. Identify the meaning of words using context clues.

  2. Identify the meaning of unknown words using resources (i.e. dictionary, glossary, online search).


  1. Flashcards for Crash available here
(1) RL.5.3 Compare and contrast two or more characters, settings, or events in a story or drama, drawing on specific details in the text (e.g., how characters interact).

How are characters alike or different in a story?

Analyzing and Comparing Characters

Students will be able to:

  1. Identify and explain the similarities and differences between characters using details from the text.


  1. Interview Book Characters Activity - available here

  2. Character Perspectives Graphic Organizer

  3. Character Traits Activity - available here
(1) RL.5.5 Explain how a series of chapters, scenes, or stanzas fits together to provide the overall structure of a particular story, drama, or poem.
(1) RL.5.6 Describe how a narrator's or speaker's point of view influences how events are described.

Story Elements and Point of View

Students will be able to:

  1. Identify and explain story elements (character, setting, plot).

  2. Summarize (conflict/resolution).

  3. Understand and explain text structure.

  4. Understand text as a whole.

  5. Describe how point of view affects events in a story.


  1. Activities/Lesson Plans for Crash available here

  2. Literature Book Activities available here

  3. Story Stew Activity- available here

  4. Sequencing – Storyboard Scholastic Activity - available here

There's a Boy in the Girl's Bathroom by Louis Sachar Resources available here:




Suggestion for Class Discussion:  If the point of view in each of these novels changed, how would it impact the plot?  How would it impact the theme?

Create a basic plot diagram of the text during reading. Discuss the use of symbols to represent major events, and assign a positive or negative rating to each plot event listed. Then, help students turn their ideas into a graphical map of the story to introduce the concept to the class.

  1. Graphic Map available here

  2. Graphic Map Sample

  3. Graphic Map Rubric available here
(1) RL.5.11 Recognize, interpret, and make connections in narratives, poetry, and drama, to other texts, ideas, cultural perspectives, eras, personal events, and situations.

What are story elements?

Why is it important to reflect on the theme of a piece of literature?

How does bullying affect children on a daily basis?

Understanding and Interpreting Theme

Students will be able to:

  1. Define the concept of a theme.

  2. Define and discuss the theme of the novel.

  3. Determine importance.

  4. Use supporting details.

  5. Make connections relating to the theme of a story.


  1. Activities/Lesson Plans for Crash

  2. Literature Book Activities

  3. Interview Book Characters Activity available here

  4. Story Stew Activity available here

  5. Sequencing – storyboard Scholastic

  6. Character Traits Activity Available here

There's a Boy in the Girl's Bathroom by Louis Sachar Resources:




Suggestion for Class Discussion:  If the point of view in each of these novels changed, how would it impact the plot?  How would it impact the theme?

  1. Crash Book Report form

There's a Boy in the Girl's Bathroom Discussion Guides:

  1. There's a Boy.. Chapter 1-5.doc

  2. There's a Boy.. Chapter 6-10.doc

  3. There's a Boy.. Chapters 18-22.doc

  4. There's a Boy.. Chapters 23-27.doc

  5. There's a Boy... Chapters11-17.doc

  6. There's a Boy... Response Rubric.doc
(1) L.5.1 Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English grammar and usage when writing or speaking.
(1) L.5.1.b Form and use the perfect (e.g., I had walked; I have walked; I will have walked) verb tenses.
(1) L.5.1.c Use verb tense to convey various times, sequences, states, and conditions.
(1) L.5.1.d Recognize and correct inappropriate shifts in verb tense.
(1) L.5.3 Use knowledge of language and its conventions when writing, speaking, reading, or listening.

How can we appropriately use verb tense when writing?

Practicing and Utilizing the Correct Verb Tense when Writing

(1 week)

Students will be able to:

  1. Define verb tense.

  2. Form verb tenses.

  3. Identify the correct verb tense to use.

  4. Distinguish from correct/incorrect verb tense.

  5. Utilize correct verb tense when writing.


  1. Educational Resources - Practicing Past, Present, Future Verb Tense

  2. Educational Resources - Editing Verb Tense

  3. Verb Tense Lesson Plan

  4. Guide to Grammar and Writing

  5. Working with Verbs

  6. Verb Tense Educational Rap


  1. Verb Tenses Worksheet
(1) W.5.3 Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, descriptive details, and clear event sequences.
(1) W.5.3.a Orient the reader by establishing a situation and introducing a narrator and/or characters; organize an event sequence that unfolds naturally.
(1) W.5.3.b Use narrative techniques, such as dialogue, description, and pacing, to develop experiences and events or show the responses of characters to situations.
(1) W.5.3.c Use a variety of transitional words, phrases, and clauses to manage the sequence of events.
(1) W.5.4 Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development and organization are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience. (Grade-specific expectations for writing types are defined in standards 1-3 above.)
(1) W.5.5 With guidance and support from peers and adults, develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach. (Editing for conventions should demonstrate command of Language standards 1-3 up to and including grade 5 on pages 28 and 29.)
(1) W.5.6 With some guidance and support from adults, use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing as well as to interact and collaborate with others; demonstrate sufficient command of keyboarding skills to type a minimum of two pages in a single sitting.

What writing strategies do good writers use to develop a narrative essay?

Understanding and Utilizing Writing Strategies for Narrative Essays

(2 weeks)

Students will be able to:

  1. Describe & explain the Personal Narrative structure.

  2. Utilize the five senses to evoke detail and development in characters.

  3. Use transitional words to help with organization of an essay.

  4. Employ strategies to help with ideas for personal narrative.

  5. Distinguish important/unimportant details for a personal narrative.

  6. Arrange a conclusion to provide a solid ending to the personal narrative.

  7. Plan & Compose a personal narrative writing piece.

  8. Manage a personal narrative writing piece through the writing process.


Mentor texts to help students understand the structure of a personal narrative:

  1. 26 Fairmount Avenue series by Tomie DePaola

  2. Christmas Remembered by Tomie DePaola

  3. Boy: Tales of Childhood by Roald Dahl

  4. A Girl from Yamhill by Beverly Cleary

  5. Owl Moon by Jane Yolen

  6. Thunder Cake by Patricia Polacco

Teach Mini-Lessons on parts of a Personal Narrative such as:

  1. Organization (beginning, middle, and end)

  2. Language Features (Past tense, first person, action verbs, transition words, five senses through description)

  3. Forms of Personal Narrative (diary, autobiography, newspaper article, story, picture book, etc.)

  4. Pre-Writing Activities (Personal timelines, writing bingo, Memory Box, Personal Memoir Organizers, Writer's Notebook)

  5. Personal Memoir Organizer.pdf

  6. Personal Narrative Framework.pdf

  7. Personal Narrative Graphic Organizer.doc

  8. Personal Timeline & Writing Bingo.pdf

  9. Writing Bingo Template.pdf

  10. Descriptive Writing


  1. Journal Questions - Personal Narrative Mentor Texts.doc

  2. Personal Narrative Rubric.doc

  3. 6 + 1 Traits Writing Rubric
(1) RI.5.3 Explain the relationships or interactions between two or more individuals, events, ideas, or concepts in a historical, scientific, or technical text based on specific information in the text.
(1) RI.5.6 Analyze multiple accounts of the same event or topic, noting important similarities and differences in the point of view they represent.
(1) RI.5.7 Draw on information from multiple print or digital sources, demonstrating the ability to locate an answer to a question quickly or to solve a problem efficiently.
(1) RI.5.8 Explain how an author uses reasons and evidence to support particular points in a text, identifying which reasons and evidence support which point(s).
(1) RI.5.9 Integrate information from several texts on the same topic in order to write or speak about the subject knowledgeably.
(1) SL.5.1 Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher led) with diverse partners on grade 5 topics and texts, building on others' ideas and expressing their own clearly.
(1) SL.5.1.a Come to discussions prepared, having read or studied required material; explicitly draw on that preparation and other information known about the topic to explore ideas under discussion.
(1) SL.5.1.b Follow agreed-upon rules for discussions and carry out assigned roles.
(1) SL.5.1.c Pose and respond to specific questions by making comments that contribute to the discussion and elaborate on the remarks of others.
(1) SL.5.1.d Review the key ideas expressed and draw conclusions in light of information and knowledge gained from the discussions.

Why is it important to discuss and examine multiple perspectives?

How can informational text be analyzed to view multiple perspectives?

Examining and Analyzing Multiple Accounts of the Same Event or Topic

(2 weeks)

Students will be able to:

  1. Explain the relationships between the same event.

  2. Analyze multiple accounts of the same event.

  3. Draw on information from multiple resources (print and digitally).

  4. Utilize reasons and evidence to support thoughts.

  5. Integrate information from several texts on the same topic.

  6. Engage in collaborative discussions.


  1. Critical Literacy Lesson Plan - Christopher Columbus.doc

  2. Christopher Columbus by Peter and Connie Roop

  3. Encounter by Jane Yolen

  4. The Tianos: The People who Welcomed Columbus (Jacobs, 1992)

  5. Websites, such as Medieval Sourcebook

  6. Christopher Columbus: Extracts from Journal

  7. Christopher Columbus

  8. Teach the difference between fact and opinion using lessons and activities like these

  9. Connecting Across Texts Lesson Plan

  10. Interactive for Comparing and Contrasting with a Venn Diagram Web-Based Resource

Using Cooperative Learning Strategies such as jigsaw in the classroom:



  1. Jigsaw Activity Rubric

  2. Matrix for Making Connections Between Texts (Printable)
Common Core Suggested Glossary

NYLearns English Language Arts Glossary:  (Grades 3-5)

This glossary contains those terms found in or associated with the Common Core State Standards.  The glossary includes terms that are essential to understanding and developing mastery of the Standards. For additional definitions and terms, please refer to the appropriate Appendices for the ELA/Literacy or Math Common Core State Standards.

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