Story Elements–Setting

I think I win the award for worst blogger ever! Haha Oh well! I am currently in over my head again (though not nearly as bad as with cheerleading last year). I was appointed Technology Committee Chairman in a school year when we have brand new Chromebooks for students to use. My principal is advocating “use them differently than a regular computer” but in actuality—you can’t. I think my school thinks technology is going to change the face of education forever, but in reality, the kids are already using these things on a daily basis. We are just bringing them more.


We are currently in a unit on Short Story Elements. This is a long unit. I want it to take a good while (hopefully well into October) because I am focusing on key reading and writing skills on top of learning the parts of a short story. My focus is…..

Content: Short Story Elements (Character, Setting, Conflict, Plot, and Theme)

Writing: Composing in complete sentences, Composing on the computer, Revising on the computer, Writing using evidence from the text

Skill: Inferring and Concluding


I will post on character later, because I have a ton of fun resources for that. We are working on setting. Their notes include the definition of setting, how the author includes or shows you the setting, the impact setting can have on a story, and mood/atmosphere.

Day 1….We took a lot of notes and talked about those notes. I also introduced setting by showing them 6 pictures and having them guess where the picture was taken, when it was taken, and one word to describe the feeling they got when they looked at those pictures. They ranged from a run down mental hospital to the Jetsons to people playing the rain. I wanted to quickly expose them to a lot of “feelings”. This helped the ideas be fresh when we talked about mood.

Day 2….Student place “stickies” in their book when the author describes setting or the students can infer mood. We talk about these stickies as a class.

Day 3/4…Students use computer to make a Facebook page I designed for their character. This focuses on our last sub-unit of Characters/Characterization and our new sub-unit of Setting. They had to write status updates that focused on their character’s dynamicness (new word I just invented), about their setting, about their conflict (a little intro to this), and had to find cover photos of their setting. This made them think of places they could “connect” it to in their actual life.

Day 5….Warm-Up on Inferring Mood from (great resource if you have never used it before!) where students have to highlight their evidence they used to make an inference. We will then talk about and check the passage. After that, I am showing them  4 short video clips. In the first two, they have to infer setting. In the second two, they have to infer mood. I also give them a worksheet where they write their inference and then their evidence.

Day 6….They are doing a personal book application to show where they infer mood. In this,I make them write a focus sentence to introduce their book and the mood of that particular scene. They then have to give me background information on the mood of their story, a quote from the text to support it, an analysis of that quote, and a return to their focus statement. They hate doing this because thy don’t like to read directions, but it’s helpful for me to see who gets it and who doesn’t.

After that, they are going to do some whole class activities and take  a quiz being moving onto conflict.

Here are some of the anchor charts I have up in my room right now…Displaying photo.JPGDisplaying photo.JPG


Below are also the links to the videos I used for our video lesson. I like to do this to give them videos to watch so they can relate the skills to another media. (Titanic–Infer Setting: Early 1900’s and Loading Dock for the Ship. Evidence is the clothes, the cars, the ship right next to them, and the things they talk about) (Percy Jackson and the Sea of Monsters–Infer Setting: In a cave in a magical realm in present day. Evidence: Cyclops, Looks like a Cave, Cell Phone and “Going Viral”) (Because of Winn Dixie–Infer Mood: Sad, Opal talks about being sad) (Twilight: Eclipse–Infer Mood: Serious, Confident, Important. Evidence: They are fighting and receiving instruction. Everyone is serious and doesn’t laugh. They hop right into the fight.)



Have a fabulous Tuesday!


–Miss Wyoming (:




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