Beacon Lesson Plan Library

People Do Not Live In Round Houses

Jane Peebles
Citrus County Schools


Do you want well-rounded students who are excellent writers and informed technology users? This is the lesson for you! This lesson teaches students to create, revise, retrieve and verify information.


The student uses electronic technology to create, revise, retrieve, and verify information (including but not limited to word-processing software, electronic encyclopedias).


-[Tootles] by Gertrude Crampton, Golden Books Publishing Co. Inc, August 1997
-Writing paper
-Computer paper
-Access to computer(s)
-Access to the Internet
-Access to a word processing program (If you do not have a word processor installed on your computer you could use Word pad or Note pad but it may limit your ability to add graphics and pictures.)


1. Secure the book [Tootles]. Allow plenty of time for special order if necessary.

2. Have permission slips signed for students to use the Internet if necessary.

3. Student and teacher must be familiar with word processors before this lesson

4. Secure pictures of Railroad Roundhouses (Local hobby shops and the Internet are good sources.)

5. Make copies of the attached rubric for each student.

6. Have a stapler available for stapling booklets together.

7. Have crayons for students to complete their artwork.

8. Schedule computer lab ahead of time if necessary.

9. Check out weblinks ahead of time to make sure they still work and are appropriate.

10. Purchase recorded train sounds from hobby shop if necessary.

11. If you are including ESOL/ESL or ESE students, choose peer buddies before beginning the lesson.


Note: This lesson assumes that the student is already familiar with the use of a word processor. It also assumes that the teacher is familiar with word processors and using the Internet as a research tool. Thirdly, it assumes that you have a computer/computers in your classroom or a lab available for your use. The number of days for this lesson are suggested only. They can easily be adjusted according to the technological and reading abilities of your students.

Suggested Day 1 Activities: Procedure 1-6
1. Have a picture/s of RoundHouses available to hang around the room. (available at hobby shops or Internet)

2. Grab students' attention by playing a train sound. (available at hobby shops)

3. Read the story of [Tootles] aloud to the students.

4. Discuss the story interactively with the students.

5. Ask students if they have ever heard of a RoundHouse.

6. If someone answers "yes", give them a chance to describe what they saw.

Suggested Day 2: procedure 7-11
7. Have the students navigate to to see an example of a roundhouse. Be sure to check all sites the day of use for functionality and safety.

8. Pass out the rubric to the students. (see attached file)

9. Discuss the rubric until all students understand how to proceed using the computer as a research tool and understand the expected outcome of their
research/writing project.

10. Allow two 30 min. periods for students to research. Use suggested Websites under the Weblinks section of this plan. Another option would be to use Comptonís online or your favorite online dictionary.

11. Have students make note cards as they go.

Suggested Day 3-4 or 5 (procedure 12)
12. Have students type their information into a word processor. Have them use their note cards to guide their writing. This could take (3-4) 30-45 min. periods to complete. You will have a better idea how long to allow after the first day of typing.

13. Direct students to type only one to two short paragraphs per page. Tell them that the top part of their pages will be their own hand drawn artwork depicting the information on each page.

14. As students complete their research papers, read over them and help them to correct misspellings and revise their writing. After they are corrected, have the student print their reports.

15. Staple each report together as it is printed. Allow time for students to draw and complete each page's artwork.

Final Day
16. Have a number of the students volunteer to read their completed booklets to their classmates.


The student will show evidence by their report that they understand the steps to creating, revising, retrieving and verifying information electronically.
The writing will be assessed by the attached rubric.


This lesson can be extended to ESOL/ESL or ESE students by providing peer support. Have these students sit beside a peer buddy to help guide them through the steps. If a student cannot read the instructions this becomes a team effort with their peer buddy. Any student having physical limitations can have their peer buddy secure information for them while they direct them.

Web Links

Web supplement for People Do Not Live In RoundHouses

Web supplement for People Do Not Live In RoundHouses
Ask Jeeves

Web supplement for People Do Not Live In RoundHouses

Attached Files

A rubric for the writing assessment.     File Extension: pdf

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