Common Core State Standards
NOTE: This lesson can address the following Common Core State Standards: CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.K.3, W.1.3, W.2.3, W.3.3, W.3.3.B, W.3.3.C, W.3.3.D, W.4.3, W4.3.A, W.4.3.B, W.4.3.C, W.4.3.D, W.4.3.E, W.5.3, W.5.3.A, W.5.3.B, W.5.3.C, W.5.3.D and W.5.3.E.
Elements of Science Fiction
Key elements often found in Science Fiction include:
A futuristic setting
Another location (outer space, under the oceans, another dimension of existence)
Aliens on Earth, humans that have changed or humans on an alien planet
An antagonist (troublemaker)
A protagonist (hero)
Any Time of Year
This prompt can be used any time of the year, simply remove the leprechauns and replace them with aliens of some kind.
St. Patrick’s Day
For St. Patrick’s Day, I decided to guide the students to write a Science Fiction story in which leprechauns attack planet Earth. The students are certainly free to turn this into a pleasant encounter in which the leprechauns are friendly, but terribly lost and need help getting back to their home.
NOW THE LESSON!
To get a full understanding on how I conduct each writing lesson you may want to read the Writing Prompts Introduction post. The lesson outlined below (and all other prompts posted) will make more sense and be easier to follow and use. Here’s the lined paper I use for Grades K-2 and Grades 2-7
Tell the Story Line
Tell the story line: A boy or girl is in a futuristic setting doing an ordinary activity. He/she notices unusual green in various places and encounters one or more leprechauns. The encounter can be problematic or friendly. The ending can be anything.
Give the students some information about leprechauns to spur ideas. Students may or may not use these details in their story. Either way is fine!
Leprechauns typically have a beard, wear a coat and hat, are mischievous, make or mend shoes, have a hidden pot of gold at the end of a rainbow, are enslaved and grant 3 wishes to anyone who can free them.
Characters and Super Powers
Next, brainstorm characters and superpowers: Ability to fly, supernatural strength, telekinesis (lift/move something with the mind) etc.
Third, brainstorm things found in a futuristic setting: Flying cars and skateboards, family robots, holograms (serving as a futuristic “phone call”-talking to someone in person through the hologram.)
Places to Find Green
Fourth, brainstorm unusual places to find green: Faucet-green water, all stoplights shine green only, rivers turn green, increase in moss, vines and grass, broccoli or spinach in the fridge multiplies, milk is green etc.
Fifth, brainstorm problems:
Leprechauns are mean and attacking with green, tying people’s shoes together and tripping them, tricking people with false images of gold etc.
OR, friendly leprechauns are lost, begging for help to get back home.
Think about a solution for your problem: Leprechauns grant 3 wishes to be freed, leprechauns promise to tell where gold is if freed or humans defeat the leprechauns by….
Show the 5 Sections
- Character’s ordinary day in a futuristic setting
- Notices unusual green
- Encounters leprechauns/Problem
- Reaction and Action
- Solution and Conclusion
NOW TO WRITE!
Guide the students through the following steps so their story is organized and complete. They are free to write these ideas in their own words.
- In the first section of the story, name the character and describe in detail what the character was doing in his/her ordinary day. The story should reveal the character’s superpower that is very normal in this setting.
- Next, in the second section, describe when and where the character first notices green in an unusual place.
- Name the second time and place he/she notices green.
- Older students can name the third time and place he/she notices green.
- For the third section of the story, describe the encounter with the leprechaun(s).
- Write about the problem (an attack or a problem the friendly leprechauns have)
- The fourth section describes the character’s reaction and action.
- Lastly, in the fifth and final section, write about the solution and ending to the story.
Print the Lesson
The lesson includes sample sentences for each section of the story.
As soon as the students are done writing, they can add a St. Patrick’s Day art accent to their border.
For years now, I’ve been following the master of slime and Science at Little Bins for Little Hands.
If you have a student who wants to incorporate green slime in his/her attack, have them make their own green slime!
Below are a couple samples from a 1st and 2nd Grader.
Past Verbs that end in ED