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Lesson Plans

For each of the sessions at the MLKCSE, you will have to submit a lesson plan. You will find the Lesson Plan Form on the website. Just fill it out for each session and submit it by noon on the Tuesday before your session. This will give us time to respond. See instructions for doing so on the Requirements page.

The Lesson Plan is your plan for how you will teach the book to the children. Although a central part of it will be your adaptation of the relevant question set, you will also have to think about how to prepare the children to have the philosophical discussion. This will involve your making sure that they understand the book – both the words themselves and the story – for this is a necessary prerequisite for our philosophical discussion.

The two team-members should work on this together. Although one of you will have the central responsibility for leading the discussion, the other should be prepared to help out when she sees that it would be helpful. You are a team and need to work together. Although the person who is not leading the discussion will be taking notes on it to assist in summarizing what took place at the end of the session during the reflection period, she should also step in when she thinks it useful.

It may be obvious, but it is crucial that you are really familiar with the book you will be teaching. This means that you need to read it more than once and be certain that you understand how it raises the philosophical issues that it does. Discussing this together – as well as practicing the read-aloud – can be very helpful in assuring that you are prepared for your session.

Here is a sample lesson plan that teachers have used at the school for teaching Tusk Tusk, a book about prejudice and war. You can use it as a guide, although you will have to develop a specifically philosophical set of topics for the After Reading section using the question sets on the website.

Sample Lesson Plan Tusk Tusk (Suggested K-2) By David McKee


  • tusk
  • potter
  • decide
  • “licked his chops”
  • battle

Before Reading: Prior Knowledge

Talk about interesting or new vocabulary from the book. Give synonyms. Talk about the way the word sounds. Look at cover and title and make predictions about the story.

During Reading:

Emphasize new vocabulary words—stop and discuss the word in context. Frequently ask what will happen next (make predictions).

After Reading:

Lots of stories tell us a lesson. What do you think is the lesson in this story? (Re-read the last line) What do you predict would happen next if the story were to continue? Choose a graphic organizer that best supports the structure of the story. Ask students to summarize the story orally. What happened in the beginning? What happened in the middle? What happened at the end? What was the problem or conflict in the story? How did the characters solve the problem?

Please use the lesson plan form for making your lesson plan. You can access it either with the link on the main course page or on ella.

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