Sketch to Stretch

Literacy Strategy by Molly Burger

What is it?

  • A visual activity.
  • Deepens students' thinking comprehension of characters, theme, and other elements of story structure and the author's work.
  • Students work in small groups to draw pictures or diagrams to represent what the story means to them. It is NOT pictures of their favorite character.
  • Students can use lines, shapes, colors, symbols, and words in their sketches to express their interpretations and feelings.
  • Students share ideas, extend their understanding, and are exposed to new insights.

Why should you use this strategy?

  • Sketch-to-stretch is an effective tool for helping students deepen their understanding of stories that they read.
  • Example: Students focus on theme and on the use of symbols to represent characters and theme as they make sketch-to-stretch drawings.
  • Students learn that stories have more than one interpretation and when they reflect on characters or events in a story, they can discover more themes.

Common Core State Standards for ELA

  • Students explain what a text quote says and draw inferences from it.
  • Students apply their knowledge of the structure and craft of stories.
  • Students read and comprehend grade-appropriate stories.
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