Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Is it Too Broad?

Martha Todd
Santa Rosa District Schools


Students play a class game to learn to identify and classify levels of specificity among words.


The student identifies, classifies, and demonstrates knowledge of levels of specificity among fifth-grade or higher level words from a variety of categories.


-One copy of game (see file)
-Class copies of Quiz


Duplicate copy of the game (see file) and cut apart.
Duplicate copies of the 2 pages of the quiz for each student. (Do not run front & back!)


1. Write the following sentence on the board: Someone ate the snack. Students close their eyes and picture in their minds what happened in the sentence. Then students share what they thought. They will see that the sentence is so general that the readers got many different meanings from the sentence. Discuss why a sentence like this might not be the best to use in writing.

2. Discuss levels of specificity. In this lesson, the levels used are: broad, general, and specific.

3. Draw a chart like the one below on the board.

Broad General Specific

Car Ford Mustang
Food Mexican _______
Person Girl _______
Homework Math ________

Go over the first example and have the students orally complete the table.

4. Play Broad, General, Specific game (see file).
To play:
A. Pass out terms, one per student. Place any extra pieces in front of the room for students to pick up & put with their term if your # of students
isnít divisible by 3.
B.Students all stand up at once and find the rest of the set. There are 3 terms per set, and the students should stand in this order: broad, general, specific.
C. Students stand around the edge of the room when the set is complete and in order. Teacher leads class in checking each of the sets of terms, discussing any errors and answering any questions that may come up.

5. Students complete the cut and paste quiz to demonstrate their ability to identify and classify levels of specificity among words.

6. Re-teach to any student who has not demonstrated knowledge of the skills.


Students cut and paste words into a chart which is labeled Broad, General, and Specific. This can be used as a formative assessment by assessing progress as they do this several times, or as a summative assessment by grading the worksheet.


*The game would make a good center.
*The cut and paste assessment would be less likely to be lost if each student is given an envelope or sandwich baggie to put the cut pieces in.
*The assessment could be modified to be a fill in the blank worksheet.

Attached Files

The Broad, General, Specific Game and the quiz.     File Extension: pdf

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