Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Predictions, Predictions, and More Predictions

Monica McManus


Students pose questions about the subject of a short story based on the title and cover illustration; then read the story and determine if their questions actually pertained to the story line, and, if so, how the story answered the questions.


The student uses background knowledge of the subject and text structure knowledge to make complex predictions of content, purpose, and organization of the reading selection.

The student speaks for various occasions, audiences, and purposes, including conversations, discussions, projects, and informational, persuasive, or technical presentations.

The student identifies specific questions of personal importance and seeks to answer them through literature.

The student understands what makes various organizational elements and principles of design effective and ineffective in the communication of ideas.

The student knows how different subjects, themes, and symbols (through context, value, and aesthetics) convey intended meanings or ideas in works of art.

The student knows how the qualities and characteristics of art media, techniques, and processes can be used to enhance communication of experiences and ideas.


-Short story (teacher selected) preferably with pictures or an illustrated cover
-Large chart paper tablet
-Oral Presentation Rubric (Associated File)


Obtain copies of the short story for each student.
Separate chart paper; one piece of paper for each student.
Provide one marker for each student.


Authentic Context:
You are a novelist who has just completed your latest novel. You want to make sure that the cover and the title of your novel entices readers to purchase it. You plan to analyze the covers and titles of other novels for ideas on the best way to market your novel. Keep in mind the questions and predictions your readers will make about your novel based on the cover and the title.

1. Select a short story that has an illustrated cover or pictures within the text.

2. Ask students to look at the cover illustration or at the pictures found in the literature piece.

3. Ask students to list at least ten questions about the cover illustration.

5. Ask students to list at least ten questions about the title of the book.

6. Students will discuss their list of questions and explain the reasoning behind the questions.

7. Distribute a sheet of chart paper and a marker to each student.

8. Students will identify two of their individual questions (one question related to the cover and one title question) and write their questions on the chart paper, leaving room for the answers to be written at a later time. These questions will become the guiding questions when students read the story. Students will have to determine whether the questions pertained to story, and, if so, what are the answers to the questions. If a question did not pertain to the story, the student will explain how they used the title or cover illustration to formulate the unrelated question.

9. Allow students sufficient time to read the story and answer the guiding questions on the chart paper.

10. Discuss the Oral Presentation Rubric with the students.

10. Each student will present one of the guiding questions to the class and explain how the story answered the question. Students will also be prepared to answer questions from the audience.

Students create the title to a book that describes their own lives and explain how the title reflects their life stories.


Use the Oral Presentation Rubric provided in Associated File to assess the student presentations.


Students will learn that you can't tell a book by its cover.
Students will read to find answers to questions.
Students will explain how one's first impression should not be the basis of judgment.
Ask students how the plot of the story could be changed to fit the questions that they posed.

Attached Files

An Oral Presentation Rubric.     File Extension: pdf

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