Lesson Plan: Small Literature Groups
Joe Bernhart, Fondren Middle School, Houston, Texas
Bernhart's lesson plan is also available as a PDF
file. See Materials Needed, below, for links to student
activity sheets related to the lesson.
Response to Literature in Small Book Groups
sets of books
to store group texts, writer's notebooks, etc.
Students will participate in book groups of four to five students
each. Each group will select its own book to read from a list
of ten young adult novels. Students are expected to read books
aloud, discuss them, write letters to a "Book Buddy"
a student in another class who is reading the same
text and produce a culminating project representing
the mini-lesson concepts, characters, and themes of the literature.
Students will use their writer's notebooks to become focused
for the day's lesson and to express themselves creatively.
and write about literature through peer interaction.
deeper understanding of the works they read.
and care about the literature they read.
one another in peer groups, as they seek their own meaning
original projects that demonstrate mastery of literate skills.
in critical literacies within a meaningful social context.
Products From Lesson:
ownership of learning
facilitation, guidance, and feedback
Structure of Class:
Student desks are arranged in small groups of four to five
students each. Each heterogeneous group is student-centered,
in which students are asked to monitor their own progress
and learning throughout each process required in the book
A variety of activities will take place over time, depending
on where students and books groups are in the process. Some
of the activities will include:
literary concepts learned in mini-lessons.
Activities or Culminating Activities:
Each group will create a book
project representing their understanding of the literature.
Upon completion, students will present their projects to the
On a daily basis, students may be evaluated through:
of mini-lesson literature concepts.