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Learning about Tall Tales using Kerpoof


Learning about Tall Tales using Kerpoof

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Through this lesson, students will read tall tales to identify the key characteristics of this genre. They will eventually show their understanding of the genre by writing their own tall tales using the website As students complete these tasks, they will gain the skills needed for real-world,independent applications of these skills.
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Material Type: Assignment
Technical Format: PDF
Date Added to MERLOT: March 25, 2011
Date Modified in MERLOT: May 13, 2014
Submitter: Anna Cajiga
Keywords: genre, tall tales, reading, Kerpoof


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Primary Audience: Grade School, Middle School
Mobile Compatibility: Not specified at this time
Technical Requirements:  
Language: English
Cost Involved: no
Source Code Available: unsure
Accessibility Information Available: unsure
Creative Commons: unsure


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Avatar for Lori Parmalee
5 years ago

Lori Parmalee (Teacher (K-12))

This is an engaging lesson that incorporates Instrucional Design for Learning, technology, and the Principles of UDL.  The lesson addresses the need of a reader to understand and comprehend varieties of genre.  The objective to identify key characteristics of tall tales is presented quickly and clearly, through multiple means of media and representation.  Students share prior knowledge, listen to examples read aloud, record observations, and participate in class discussions.  They practice identifying key elements through research of their own, by independently exploring a variety of tall tales, noting observations.  A final assessment is performed via creation of a product - a digital story board created and published, which typifies the key elements of a tall tale.

The lesson incorporates a valid use of technology to create an authentic product.  It is project based, makes connections to the real world and allows the sharing of learning with others as students watch, evaluate, and comment upon one another's work.   UDL frameworks are highly emphasized as students are presented with multiple media in the means of read aloud, graphics, animation, and print.  They are asked to think critically, recognize relationships, activate prior knowledge, and synthesize a product as they are provided with models, feedback and support.

Technical Remarks:

Links to Kerpoof worked well.  I am not familiar with digital storytelling and had not previously heard of Kerpoof.  I explored the site briefly and found it to be quite fascinating!

Time spent reviewing site: 40 minutes

Avatar for Justine Koszela
5 years ago

Justine Koszela (Teacher (K-12))

The ideas and content behind this lesson are very well thought out, strong and geared towards upper elementary students. The goal oriented design plan is well thought out and every aspect is addressed including problem/need, real world performance, an instructional objective, and essential content. The lesson begins by having students share examples and prior knowledge of tall tales and recording them on chart paper. Students are then asked to model various examples of what tall stories by looking through texts and books. A suggestion maybe to model and write a class tall tale prior to students writing their own. This would be a great way to really help those struggling students to see the process of writing and thinking needed when creating this project. Another great idea would be to provide at-risk or struggling students a writing skeleton to help them stay on track. Also, having an audio text, book online read to the students would be another great way of using technology within the lesson.

Next in the lesson, teacher and students look for the characteristics of tall tales and together while reading a tall tale aloud, which is a great way to teach to those auditory listeners. Students are then asked to create a graphic organizer and listing the characteristics of their own stories. This is a great way to incorporate cooperative learning and differentiated instruction, which are important pedagogies to use within a classroom. Once students are given an opportunity to investigate and read tall stories, they are asked to create and write their own using a graphic organizer and a digital story telling tool, Kerpoof. This is another great UDL principal for allowing students to represent and apply their learning in various ways through technology. Students are encouraged to be creative, apply what they learned, evaluate and rate one another’s writing. Another great idea of this lesson is that it will allow students to be proud of their work by posting it onto the school’s website and the class blackboard. This allows more of a real world application to their work!  Overall, this is a well thought out lesson that addresses many pedagogies, strategies and great use of technology!

Technical Remarks:

This lesson plan is very easy to follow and to implement in the classroom.  I do not see any issues with it at all!! In order to fully teach this lesson the way it was designed, a blackboard, a subscription to kerpoof, with student accounts, as well as Internet.  This lesson is rich in  technology and there are numerous ways to increase it as well!

Time spent reviewing site: 37 Minutes