Our Group Readers Theater: Managing the Sequence of Events in Our Script | EL Education Curriculum

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ELA 2012 G8:M2A:U3:L2

Our Group Readers Theater: Managing the Sequence of Events in Our Script

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Long Term Learning Targets

  • I can write narrative texts about real or imagined experiences using relevant details and event sequences that make sense. (W.8.3)
  • I can produce clear and coherent writing that is appropriate to task, purpose, and audience. (W.8.4)

Supporting Targets

  • I can add transitional words and phrases to connect scenes in a script.

Ongoing Assessment

  • Readers Theater script, draft with revisions and transitions


AgendaTeaching Notes

1.  Opening

A.  Unpacking Learning Targets (2 minutes)

2.  Work Time

A.  Combining Scripts and Adding Transitions (25 minutes)

3.  Closing and Assessment

A.  Group Read of the Entire Script (18 minutes)

4.  Homework

A.  Continue independent reading. 

  • Students will need their scripts from Lesson 1. Due to limited time, students combine their individual scripts in chronological order.
  • Post: Learning target.




  • Document camera
  • Transition Model (one for display)
  • Writing Transitions (excerpt) (one per Readers Theater group)


OpeningMeeting Students' Needs

A. Unpacking Learning Target (2 minutes)

  • Invite students to read the learning target with you:

*   "I can add transitional words and phrases to connect scenes in a script."

  • Ask:

*   "Why are transitional words and phrases important?"

  • Select volunteers for their responses. Listen for them to explain that transitional words and phrases make one scene flow into another, which makes it easier for the audience to understand and follow.
  • Posting learning targets allows students to reference them throughout the lesson to check their understanding. The learning targets also provide a reminder to students and teachers about the intended learning behind a given lesson or activity.
  • Discussing and clarifying the language of learning targets helps build academic vocabulary.

Work Time

Work TimeMeeting Students' Needs

A. Combining Scripts and Adding Transitions (25 minutes)

  • Remind students that the prompt for the performance task requested that the scenes be presented in chronological order, in the order they happened in the novel. Give teams a few minutes to put their individual scenes in chronological order according to when they happened in the book.
  • Tell students that now that they have determined the sequence of their scenes, they need to revise existing narrator lines between each script by adding transitional words and/or phrases so that the group script flows smoothly from one scene to the next.
  • Using a document camera, display the Transition Model. Invite students to read it with you. Ask them to discuss in their groups:

*   "How has one scene been connected to the next? Which transitional words or phrases have been used?"

  • Select volunteers to share their responses. Listen for students to explain that the narrator says, "A few weeks later ..." at the beginning of Scene 2 to show the passing of time between the two scenes.
  • Display and distribute the Writing Transitions (excerpt) page. Read the introductory paragraph aloud and invite students to read along silently in their heads. Read through the headings of each of the six transitional devices (to add, compare, show exception, show time, emphasize, or to show sequence) and explain that the groups can spend some time reading the suggested words and phrases in these categories when they begin working.
  • Invite groups to revise individual scripts to include transitional words and phrases at the beginning and the end so that the group script flows smoothly from one scene to the next.
  • Circulate to offer support as necessary. Ask:

*   "How does this scene connect with the previous scene? Which transitional words and phrases have you used?"

  • Providing models of expected work supports all learners, especially those who are challenged.
  • Providing examples of transitional words and phrases gives students a selection to choose from, ensuring that all are able to add appropriate transitional words and phrases to connect the scenes of their Readers Theater. Examples also provide guidance for students to think of their own ideas.

Closing & Assessments

ClosingMeeting Students' Needs

A. Group Read of the Entire Script (18 minutes)

  • Refocus the groups. Remind them that an effective way to tell whether the script flows from one scene to the next is to read it through from start to finish and to make revisions where the flow isn't quite right.
  • Tell groups to read through their scripts three times and to make revisions to the transitional words and phrases where necessary.
  • Asking students to read their writing aloud can help them to hear errors that they may not have seen when reading it silently in their heads.


  • Continue independent reading.

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