Literature, Educational Technology
Material Type:
Lesson Plan, Media Object, Reading
Lower Elementary
  • Lesson Plan
    Public Domain Dedication
    Media Formats:
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    Creating a Biographical Digital Story

    Creating a Biographical Digital Story


    This is a lesson to help students practice retelling a story about a person they have read about in a biography.  They will practice retelling a story in sequential order, with at least 3 details about that person.  They will learn to use a digital resource for creating their story and will practice other technology skills (searching for images online, typing, describing their chosen person in a clear way).  I have not used it yet; it will most likely require some adjusting after I've worked through it with students.


    This is a lesson to introduce students a digital story that they will be creating.  This is written for 1st grade students.  They will pick a biography of someone they admire and retell this person's story via a digital story.  

    • I have not taught the lesson, but expect that we will work on it for 2-3 weeks total.  This lesson wil an introduction to the project for students.
    • It is meant to be taught synchronously and if possible, in person.
    • Author:  Lindsay Davis


    Background for Teachers

    To teach this lesson, you will need to have an understanding of how to use online story telling resources such as Adobe Spark Video or Google Story Telling Tools.  


    Step 1 - Goals and Outcomes

    Step 1 Goals and Outcomes


    Learning Intentions:

    Students will be able to retell facts about a chosen person using digital story telling.


    Success Criteria:

    Students will:

    • Reread a chosen biography and find 3 or more facts about that person.
    • Find images of the person they are writing about.
    • Fill out a storyboard to prepare for their digital story.
    • Complete a digital story that retells facts about a person.


    Step 2 - Planning Instruction

    Step 2 Planning Instruction

    Student Background Knowledge

    Prior to this lesson, students will need to have an understanding of how to identify the main topic and retell key details in a text.  They should know what a biography is and have read several.  It would be helpful if students have some experience searching for pictures on the internet (knowing how to find free stock images). 

    Strategies for Diverse Learners

    For struggling readers:  have students work as partners to complete the project or have a peer-coach that can help them finish the project.

    For all students (ELLs):  create a vocabulary wall for students to reference as well as step by step directions with pictures (or a recording) for using the technology they are expected to use.

    For advanced readers:  have students act as a peer-coach for friends who have less experience with technologoy or reading difficulties.


    Step 3 - Instruction

    Step 3 Instruction

    *This lesson is meant to be used late in the school year.  Students will have been introduced to biographies and will have had the opportunity to read several (along with identifying main ideas and details).

    Create your own example of a biographical digital story.  Read aloud the biography you have chosen before showing them your digital story.  Have them help identify the main topic and details, along with any interesting facts that they think are important to remember about this person.  Show them the digital story and tell them they are going to create one of their own.  Either individually or in pairs, have students select their biography and fill out the story board with key details and main idea.  


    Step 4 - Assessments

    Step 4 Assessments

    Student's digital stories will be the assessment.  See rubric below.