Empowering Writers

October 2015 K-1 Lesson of the Month

1) Read a book about a haunted house to the students. A suggested list of books is provided, but also check out your school library for more titles.

  • At the Old Haunted House by Helen Kettleman, (Two Lions Publishing)
  • Haunted Castle on Hallows Eve by Mary Pope Osborne, (Random House Books for Young Readers)
  • The Haunted House, Choose Your Own Adventure by R. A. Montgomery, (Chooseco)
  • The Haunted House by Eve Bunting, (HMH Books for Young Readers)
  • Haunted House, Haunted Mouse by Judy Cox, (Holiday House)

2) After reading the book, ask: What kinds of things hide in haunted houses? Chart their responses on chart paper or the white board. (ghost, spook, goblin, witch, jack-o-lantern, pumpkin, Frankenstein, vampire, bat, spider, black cat, monster, etc). Then ask: Where do they hide in the haunted house? Chart these response as well. (in the window, behind the door, on top of the bookshelf, caught in a spider’s web, in the coffin, behind a tree, under the moon, beside/under the bed, rocking in the chair, inside the closet, hanging on the fence, under the porch, etc.)

3) MODEL a few examples using the template below.

Under the bed we saw a huge tarantula with hairy legs and bulging eyes.

Inside the mouth of Frankenstein we saw a smashed jack-o-lantern.

4) After MODELING several examples, duplicate and distribute copies of the template. Have each student fill in a “position word” (prepositional phrase) followed by the place where their creature is hiding and finally the creature with added description.

5) Have the students illustrate their example, using a large piece of manila construction paper folded in half. On the front of the folded paper, have them draw the hiding place. For example, if they were illustrating the tarantula under the bed, they would draw the bed on the front of the folded paper. Next, instruct them to cut a flap around the hiding place, only cutting through one layer. For example, cut out around the bed leaving the top uncut so as to create the flap. (If using a sample like Frankenstein’s mouth, they might cut a flap in his teeth.) Draw the hidden creature under/behind the flap they created. Lastly, glue their writing sample at the bottom, just below their hiding place.

6) Print or draw a haunted house cover and bind the writing samples together into a book entitled, This House Is Haunted!