We have been learning about the 13 colonies in class for the past few weeks. To help us learn about they "typical" daily life, we read Sarah Morton's Day: A Day in the Life of a Pilgrim Girl and Samuel Eaton's Day: A Day in the Life of a Pilgrim Boy. These books chronicle the daily activities of a Pilgrim child living at Plymouth. I have to say, my students really enjoyed these books. They are simple, to the point, and provide enough information that the kids grasped what it must have been like to be a child living in the colonial days.
In response to the literature, the students created a Flow Map of both the girl's and the boy's typical day. Using the information as presented in the book, this was actually fairly simple to do. Then, we read excerpts of Colonial Life (Historic Communities), focusing particularly on the daily activities of the children in colonial days. As we were reading this, the students could chose to swap out some of the chores that Sarah and Samuel had mentioned in the book for new ones.
Here is where the fun came in. The students then chose either the girl or the boy, created a character, and wrote in first person point of view their typical daily life. The kids were so excited by this! After completing their plan, and writing a rough draft (which took about a week to do), the students wrote a photojournal, modeled after the literature, with each paragraph of their essay becoming one entry in the book.
Here are a few examples of the students' work. I really love how they came out!
The kids were SO into this. They really had a great time trying to "speak" like the people in the colonial days. The writing was creative and expressive, yet showed their knowledge of the colonial times. All in all, a successful response to literature!