ALEX Lesson Plan


What's in Your Secret Garden?

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  This lesson provided by:  
Author:Teresa Jackson
System: Lowndes County
School: Hayneville Middle School
  General Lesson Information  
Lesson Plan ID: 8250


What's in Your Secret Garden?


After reading F.H. Burnett's The Secret Garden, students create their own secret gardens and design a slideshow presentation of their gardens to share with the class.

 Associated Standards and Objectives 
Content Standard(s):
AED (6-8) Visual Arts
1. Create works of art utilizing a variety of traditional and nontraditional media and techniques.
Examples: torn-paper collage, weaving, wire sculpture, clay relief
  • Applying steps artists use in the production of art, including conceptualizing ideas and forms, refining ideas and forms, and reflecting on and evaluating both the process of production and the product
  • Applying the elements of art and principles of design to the production of two- and three-dimensional artwork
  • Examples:
    two-dimensional--monochromatic paintings, found or natural object prints, texture-rubbing compositions;
    three-dimensional--papier-mâchè masks, clay whistles
  • Creating original multimedia works of art
  • Examples: television broadcasts, digital imaging, multimedia presentations
  • Creating original works of art using observational skills
  • Examples: drawing a shoe; painting a still life; creating a landscape in mixed-media; creating timed, gesture studies of a figure
    TC2 (6-8)
    2. Publish digital products that communicate curriculum concepts.
    Examples: Web pages, videos, podcasts, multimedia presentations
    TC2 (6-8)
    5. Use basic features of word processing, spreadsheets, databases, and presentation software.
    Examples: word processing—reports, letters, brochures
    spreadsheets—discovering patterns, tracking spending, creating budgets
    databases—contact list of addresses and telephone numbers
    presentation software—slideshow
    ELA2015 (6)
    5. Analyze how a particular sentence, chapter, scene, or stanza fits into the overall structure of a text and contributes to the development of the theme, setting, or plot. [RL.6.5]
    ELA2015 (6)
    17. Integrate information presented in different media or formats (e.g., visually, quantitatively) as well as in words to develop a coherent understanding of a topic or issue. [RI.6.7]

    Local/National Standards:


    Primary Learning Objective(s):

    Students will demonstrate their understanding of the novel through discussion and recall quizzes. Students will demonstrate an extended vocabulary through writing, speaking, and presenting projects. Students will use available computer technology to create a slideshow presentation or booklet of their secret gardens.

    Additional Learning Objective(s):

     Preparation Information 

    Total Duration:

    Greater than 120 Minutes

    Materials and Resources:

    Class set of the book The Secret Garden; magazines/books with pictures that can be cut out, art supplies, scissors (if using the booklet option)

    Technology Resources Needed:

    Computer with Internet access, digital camera, scanner, printer, a means of projection for sharing projects, such as a digital projector or TV scan converter


    A reading of Burnett's The Secret Garden, an introduction to the use of presentation software

    1.)Lead students in a discussion of the different purposes for gardens (decoration, education, food, pleasure, etc.) and the emotions often associated with them. Review the difference between fantasy (fiction) and reality (non-fiction).

    2.)Introduce Burnett's Secret Garden and allow students about two weeks to read the novel. For Internet practice, guide students in finding the book online.
    (Page by Page Books)
    A complete publication of the book online

    3.)Engage students in a discussion of the novel and its meaning. Consider the questions available at the site below.
    (Penguin Reading Guides)
    Discussion guides by Penguin Books

    4.)Explain that upon completion of their reading of the story, the students will create their own secret gardens to share with the class. Remind students that their gardens may contain real and/or make-believe things. Be sure students know that they will need to explain what is in their gardens, why things are included, and why their gardens are secret.

    5.)Allow students time to locate pictures to scan, take digital pictures, or to draw their own pictures to illustrate the things found in their secret gardens. (Booklets can replace slideshow presentations.)

    6.)Instruct students to create a slideshow presentation (using PowerPoint or other presentation software) to illustrate and explain what is in their secret garden and why they keep it secret.

    7.)Allow class time for each student to present his secret garden.

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    Assessment Strategies

    A quiz at the end of every fourth chapter (approximately) will be used for assessment.
    Sample questions:
    Why did Mary go and stay with her uncle?
    How did Mary feel when she arrived at he uncle's place?
    What were Mary's feelings toward friends?
    Did she have any friends?
    When did Mary realize that she was changing?
    Slideshow presentations will be assessed by a rubric (attached). Teacher observation of participation in discussions will be used to assess understanding.





    Each area below is a direct link to general teaching strategies/classroom accommodations for students with identified learning and/or behavior problems such as: reading or math performance below grade level; test or classroom assignments/quizzes at a failing level; failure to complete assignments independently; difficulty with short-term memory, abstract concepts, staying on task, or following directions; poor peer interaction or temper tantrums, and other learning or behavior problems.

    Presentation of Material Environment
    Time Demands Materials
    Attention Using Groups and Peers
    Assisting the Reluctant Starter Dealing with Inappropriate Behavior
    Be sure to check the student's IEP for specific accommodations.