Lessons Integrating Information and Communication Technology within a Curriculum Area


Karen OíLeary


Character Development through Readerís Theatre

Grade Level


Subject Area

English Language Arts

Overview of unit/lessons/activities (assumptions of prior knowledge/learning)

This lesson encourages students to take a piece of literature, adapt it into a script, perform their piece to the class, and to create a multimedia presentation based on their script.  Students will develop scripts collaboratively, practice using their voice to depict characters from texts, and perform in groups.  Through this activity, students have the opportunity to develop oral reading fluency and further enhance comprehension of what they are reading, specifically the traits of their characters.  The students will also enrich their understanding of character in the specific context of their chosen genre.  This lesson plan may be used and adapted to develop scripts from class novels, short stories, novels read in literature circles, etc.

Correlations to ICT and curriculum outcomes

Information and Communication Technology:

BOC 9.1  operate a wide variety of school media, computer, and other educationally appropriate equipment for learning, communication, and the representation of their learning, independently and safely with teacher supervision        

BOC 9.2  use and create information texts in a range of media, using specialized text features of those media to support the communication, with teacher assistance            
BOC 9.3  demonstrate comfort with keyboarding and manipulation of computer input and peripheral devices as they work 

BOC 9.4  manage their electronic files and correspondence efficiently       
BOC 9.5  from a range of resource options, knowledgeably select, manage, and use technological resources to solve curriculum problems and enhance their learning, with teacher guidance  

PTS 9.1  use software to brainstorm, develop a thought web, outline, and map ideas under study with independence  

PTS 9.4  create and manipulate sound, images and video, using digital equipment and computer-based editing, to represent their learning for particular audiences and purposes, independently with teacher supervision
PTS 9.5  develop multimedia presentations, based on sound principles of design, with increasing confidence,  efficiency and independence

SEHI 9.3  understand, model, and assume personal responsibility for the acceptable use of copyrighted and other information resources

SEHI 9.6  follow the Internet Access and Use Policy

CT 9.1  use language, in a range of aural, print, media and electronic forms to explore and express their perceptions, feelings, ideas and attitudes; refine their thinking; and interact, negotiate and collaborate with others in order to build their understanding

RPSD 9.3  write and represent their research using the structures, features, conventions, and techniques of specialized publication and presentation formats with growing fluency

RPSD 9.9  accurately and independently cite information sources

Grade 9 English Language Arts Outcomes:
     examine others ideas in discussion to extend their own understanding  
      listen critically to assess the adequacy of the evidence speakers give to evaluate the integrity of information presented
2.1       participate constructively in conversation, small-group and whole-group discussion, and debate, using a range of strategies that contribute to effective talk  
2.2     adapt vocabulary, sentence structure, and rate of speech to the speaking occasion
2.4     evaluate their own and othersí uses of spoken language in a range of contexts, recognizing the effects of significant verbal and non-verbal language forms
3.1       demonstrate active listening and respect for the needs, rights, and feelings of others
3.2     demonstrate an awareness of the power of spoken language to influence and manipulate, and to reveal ideas, values, and attitudes
8.1       use a range of strategies in writing and other ways of representing to describe and evaluate their learning processes and strategies
9.1       demonstrate facility in using a variety of forms of writing to create texts for specific purposes and audiences, and represent their ideas in other forms (including visual arts, music, drama) to achieve their purposes
10.1     demonstrate an awareness of what prewriting, drafting, revising, editing, proofreading, and presentation strategies work for them with various writing and other representations
10.2    consistently use the conventions of written language in final products
10.3     experiment with the use of technology in communicating for a range of purposes with a variety of audiences
10.4    demonstrate a commitment to crafting pieces of writing and other ways of representing

Projected timeline for preparation and for carrying out activities

5 - 6, 60-minute class periods.

Equipment Requirements: (computers, software, etc)

4 classroom computers with the following software installed:

  • Inspiration
  • Word processor
  • Image editing software: Photoshop Elements, IrfanView
  • Video Editing software: Pinnacle Studio
  • Multimedia software: Power Point,  
  • Electronic Thesaurus/Dictionary: Visual Thesaurus CD (Active Readers 7, 8, 9 Supplement - March 2006)
  • Still digital camera and recording media (floppy disk or camera cable and computer installed image download software)
  • Video camera, charger, fire wire cable

 LCD projector for demonstration purposes

 Overhead projector (if you donít have access to an LCD)

Teaching materials provided (Blacklines, worksheets, templates, teacher materials)  

Definition of Readerís Theatre:




Sample Inspiration Outline

  Sample Readerís Theatre scripts:



  Script writing tips:




Scripting for Readers document

Character Development Worksheet  

PowerPoint or Pinnacle Storyboard Template  

Resources available for teacher/student use (websites, references, etc)

To develop rubrics:  Rubistar.com ,  teach-nology.com

PowerPoint Tutorial: http://lrt.ednet.ns.ca/summer/2004/quicks/ppt_quick.pdf



Detailed instructions for each activity or lesson (teacher notes, activity information, learning strategies, teacher role, student roles)

First class (60-minute period):

ō      Introduce Readerís Theatre and discuss the purpose of the activity (students should have participated in a readerís theatre in grades 7 and 8 so they should already have a good foundation in place.)  Have a brief definition of Readerís Theatre already on your board, overhead, or LCD projector. *see links

ō      Using an LCD and Inspirationís rapid fire feature, brainstorm as a class tips for public speaking and performing in front of a group. (sample Inspiration outline)

ō      In small groups (3-4), have students practice reading scripts from a selection that you have already photocopied.  They can read aloud in their groups.  *see links

ō      At the end of the period, bring the students back to the whole class.  Discuss how the different groups brought their characters ďto lifeĒ.  Ask: what important characteristics did you have to keep in mind when developing your speaking role.

Second class (60-minute period):

ō      They will meet again in their groups from the previous class.  They will then each choose a character from the short story that we have just read as a class (*for the purpose of this lesson plan I will be referring to a class novel, however you may adapt this activity to use it in conjunction with a short story unit, literature circle novels, etc.)

ō      Introduce script writing to the class.  Discuss the various scripting techniques.  *see links. You may display some of these on the board, overhead, or LCD.

ō      The groups will each choose a particular scene of the novel and develop a script based on the events of the scene.  Their script must be 3-4 minutes in length. 

ō      Before they begin to write their script, they need to focus on their character development.  Have the students complete the Character Development sheet to assist them with their writing and performance. *see links

ō      If there is time remaining, the students may begin their script writing process.

Third class (60-minute period):

ō      This class is devoted to their script-writing.  The final draft of their script needs to be word-processed and individual copies made for each member of the group. 

ō      They must also complete and individual response (does not need to be word processed), discussing the development of your character and answering the following questions: What does your character strive for most in their life: accomplishment, security, love, power, excitement, knowledge, or something else?  How much does your character feel in control of the course of their life?  For what in your character's life do they feel most grateful? (These should be placed on the board or LCD before class so that students can refer back to them at any time.)

You may wish to add another working period here.

Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth classes (60-minute periods each):

Individual teachers can determine how they would like to allocate the remaining class time:

ō      Presentation of their scripts to the whole class.

ō      In-class time to work on their multimedia presentations.

ō      Viewing of their presentations.


Student products expected

Word processed script, performance, group evaluation rubric, multimedia presentation, individual response paper.

Samples (include teacher notes, assessment information, student work if available)

See above links and files.

Logistics (organization, grouping, management issues, access to technology)

The classroom will need to be set up in a way that supports group work and collaboration.  A pod of at least 4 computers should be present in the room at all times.  Access to an LCD projector or an overhead will be useful for the class brainstorming activities and group discussions.  There will also need to be space available in the classroom for the students to perform their Readerís Theatre scripts or an alternate location should be prearranged.  Teachers should predetermine a schedule of presentations to ensure proper flow in the classroom.  They may alternate between the Readerís Theatre presentations and the multimedia presentations to provide a different atmosphere in the room.  Sign up sheets for digital cameras and computers may also be useful.

Assessment information (e.g., rubrics for products and/or process)

Script Writing Rubric

Written Response Rubric

Peer Evaluation Rubric / Collaboration Rubric

Multimedia Presentation Rubric

Performance Checklist




Provided by Learning Resources & Technology Services, NS Department of Education. Privacy Policy