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Units of Practice

Lesson 2: Someone Else's Shoes

Lesson Details

Subject: English/Languages Arts
Learning Level: Middle School
Author(s): Bonnie Frazier & Brian Grisetti
Submitted by:


The focus of this lesson is for students to identify and relate to how individuals see things differently because of their gender, race, culture, and past experiences (i.e. perspective). Students will identify an authorís perspective in a story by describing the characteristics of the author. Students will empathize what it would be like to walk in someone else's shoes. A reiteration of the elements of fiction will be used to evaluate knowledge from the previous lesson.

Lesson fundamental understandings:
Essential Questions:

a. Perspective is seeing the world through an individuals sex, race, gender, culture, and past experiences.
b. Perpsective is influenced by an individuals background.
c. An author's perspective influences the elements of the story.
d. The characteristics of an individual strongly influence how they see the world.
e. How an indiviudal sees the world gives insight into their character.


National Standards

Students read a wide range of literature from many periods in many genres to build an understanding of the many dimensions (e.g., philosphical, ethical, aesthetic) of human experience.

State Standards

3.6.2 Make logical predictions about character's actions based on evidence from the text. 3.6.3 Compare works of literature from the same historical period written by authors from different cultural, generational, and gender perspectives. 5.6.4 Write responses to literary selections that demonstrate an understanding of character motivation and development. Literacy Standard #5: The students who is an independent learner is information literate and appreciates literature and other creative expressions of information.


Prerequisite Skills

Prior to this lesson students should have an understanding of the elements of fiction and a simple understanding of cultural backgrounds. This lesson will help reinforce the concept of perspective of the characters and how that perspective is shaped by the background of the author.

Teacher Information/Situations/Setting/Time

Time Frame
1 Ė 2 days (50 minute periods)

Pencils, pens
Student journals
Story selection

Pre-lesson preparation
Preparation for the lesson includes selecting the story, writing the definition of perspective on the board, and listing on the board some different cultural backgrounds.


English journals with a student-generated description of the author and the story elements will be checked for completeness.
Group oral presentation on the description of the author and the elements of the story will be evaluated by the other student groups and by the teacher.

Student Activity/Tasks

1. The students will be instructed to stand on top of their chairs and view the room from above.

2. The students will return to their seat and write in their English journal how the appearance of the room changed when viewed from above..

3. Once they finish writing, have the students copy the definition of perspective into their English journal.

4. The students will listen to a story read by the teacher.

5. Students may be given handouts with information on the author, or, depending on time available, students may research the author's background. Another option would be to deduce the authors' characteristics from the story itself and then research the author to check their conclusions.

6. As a whole class, the students will discuss the question, "How do the characteristics of the author (may include gender, race, culture, and past experiences) affect the way the story is written?"

7. After finishing the discussion, the students will be divided into groups and given a short story.

8. The group will read the story and compose in their English journal a short description of the author using examples from the story.

9. Each group will present an oral summary of the story and their conclusion about the author.

Enrichment/Alternate Activity:

Students may rewrite the story, changing the perspective of the author or putting their perspective into the story. Students compose a list of ways they can look at things differently (perspectives). Students spend a designated time; with someone they donít know well and observe their perspective.


Reading & Science

Technology Requirements/Tools/Materials

Pencil, paper, eyes, ears, brain
Teacher story
Group story (a different story for each group)


Additional Resources

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