This is a simple story map I created to use with my students in grades 1 and up. It takes a little bit of preparation so I suggest making them ahead of time, using them in a small group (so you only have to make a few), or use parent volunteers. In one grade, we had parent volunteers make us 3 class sets so that we they were ready-to-use when we needed them.
The story map is a great way to get students both writing and drawing about the elements of a story. It also makes a great piece of work to hang in the hallway or in the classroom. They are always a hit when we hang them up. We use these maps in small groups, whole group, partner work, or individual seat work. As always, the free download is available at the end of the post.
There is a front and a back page. The front page (which is cut) is glued onto the back page to create a window effect. The front of the story map looks like this:
The second page, or back of the story map, looks like this:
Directions for Assembly:
- Print a front and back page for each student.
- On the front page, cut along the dotted lines. Do not cut out the entire rectangle. These become like windows to the second page.
- Place glue along story element rectangles on the white areas and over the problem arrow of the back page. See below.
- Carefully place the front page onto the back page and smooth to make sure the glue sticks.
- Allow drying time before using in the classroom.
TIP: Do not let the students do the cutting and gluing unless they are older and follow directions well. I tried to have my younger students cut/glue and it was too complicated and took way too much time out of instruction. We ended up with ripped paper and glue all over the desks. I suggest doing them yourself or having parents assemble them.
Example of where to glue on the back page:
Directions for Students:
- On the front page, draw the setting, main characters, problem, and solution.
- Fold the “windows” back.
- On the back page, write the setting, main characters, problem, and solution.
TIP: Do not use markers. They will bleed through. Crayons or colored pencils work best.
The Mitten Example
To help visual the final product, I have included an example using Jan Brett’s adaptation of The Mitten.
The Front (would be drawn rather than printed pictures, you don’t want to see my attempt at art work):
Assembled with the Setting Window Open:
Click the links
below to download the files. After the file opens, go to File, Download (or
CTRL + S).
Files to Download
I just had to include this picture of my adorable little dog, Cosby. She has kept me company the past 7 1/2 weeks while I have been on bed rest. She is an American Hairless Terrier (yes, she has no hair, only peach fuzz). We named her Cosby, even though she was a girl, because she has to wear sweaters to keep her warm. It made us think of Bill Cosby and his numerous ugly sweaters. She has been great company while I have been on bed rest; hopefully she’s not too sick of me yet since we still have many weeks to go! Here is a picture of her asleep on our couch next to me. She spends all of her time on the couch, in my lap, or sun tanning on her bed in our sun-room. Sorry for the quality, I took the picture with my
POS super basic cell phone.