Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Rip, You're Sleepin' Your Life Away

Cheree Brown


A Venn diagram is used to show how two things are alike and different. Think about Rip's life before and after he fell asleep for 20 years. Fill in the Venn diagram by writing how Rip's old life and his new life are alike and how they are different.


The student extends previously learned knowledge and skills of the seventh grade with increasingly complex reading selections and assignments and tasks (for example, using context and word structure, making inferences and generalizations, using graphic organizers and note-making, comparing and contrasting).

The student compiles information using graphic organizers (for example, timelines, circle diagrams).


-A copy of Washington Irving's -Rip Van Winkle-
-A Venn diagram drawn out on a worksheet
-Enough copies of the Venn diagram for every student


1. Assign the students to read -Rip Van Winkle- the night before this activity is done in class.
2. Draw a Venn diagram on a blank sheet of paper. Add any directions that are necessary.
3. Make copies for every student. (Students may draw their own diagrams if needed.)
4. Fill in a sample diagram to help students (this can be just a few items to show the students how to fill in a Venn diagram.)
5. Explain to the students that they are looking for any similarities and differences in Rip's life before and after he fell asleep in the mountains.
5. Students work in pairs to fill in this diagram.


1. Make sure students have read -Rip Van Winkle- before coming to class.
2. Give students a copy of a Venn diagram and explain to them how they work.
3. Each student works with a partner to identify what things changed and what things stayed the same after Rip's 20 year sleep.
4. After students have had a chance to fill in their Venn diagrams, have a class discussion on the similarities and differences that were found. Give students time to fill in anything they may have left out.
5. Students will turn in their work after class discussion for teacher to check.
(Students can draw their own Venn diagrams if needed.)


Assess the Venn diagrams. Make sure the student is recognizing any similarities, relevant details, and the author's point of view. Check to make sure the students are using the graphic organizer to assist them in outlining the similarities and differences. Check to assure that the student is analyzing details, using context clues, and using organizational patterns. Also make sure the student can separate collected material into the correct areas of the Venn diagram.
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