December 1, 2017
By Mia Perez

Lesson plan

Retelling of The Monkey King: A Famous Chinese Story

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Do you need extra help for EL students? Try the Retelling a Fiction StoryPre-lesson.
EL Adjustments
GradeSubjectView aligned standards
Do you need extra help for EL students? Try the Retelling a Fiction StoryPre-lesson.

Students will be able to retell the beginning, middle, and end of a story read aloud to them.

The adjustment to the whole group lesson is a modification to differentiate for children who are English learners.
EL adjustments
(5 minutes)
  • Tell students that in celebration of Chinese New Year, which is being celebrated around the world right now, we are going to read a famous story that was written hundreds of years ago in China.
  • Tell students that the name of the story is The Monkey King.
  • Explain to students that the Monkey King has become a legend in China and is a popular character in Chinese folktales.
  • Instruct students to be active listeners and to pay close attention as you read the story aloud because there are certain things they need to be listening for as you read.
(10 minutes)
  • Explain to students that every story has a beginning, middle, and end.
  • Write these headings on the top of a piece of chart paper.
  • Tell students that at the BeginningOf the story you usually meet the characters and find out the Setting, which is where the story takes place.
  • Write "Who are the characters? What is the setting?" under the Beginning heading. (Tip: Add drawings to your writing, such as stick figures or animals to represent the characters and a tree and a house to represent the setting.)
  • Explain to students that in the MiddleOf the story you find out what is happening to the characters and uncover the main problem.
  • Write "What is the problem?" under the Middle heading.
  • Tell students that at the EndOf the story you find out the Solution, which is how the characters solved the problem.
  • Write "How do the characters solve the problem?" under the End heading.
(10 minutes)
  • Read The Monkey KingAloud.
  • Ask students to think about what happened at the beginning, middle, and end of the story as they are listening.
  • Encourage students to use the Beginning, Middle, and End poster as a resource.
(20 minutes)
  • Preview and hand out the Sharing Ideas About Stories worksheet for students to work on and complete independently.
  • Show students that, in addition to writing about the beginning, middle, and end of the story, they will also be writing about their favorite part and their favorite character.


  • Give students the option to draw and label their answers when they are filling in the boxes on the Sharing Ideas About Stories worksheet.


  • Ask students to compare and contrast the beginning, middle, and end of The Monkey KingWith another story of their choosing. Students may chart their findings on the Venn Diagram Graphic Organizer worksheet.
(10 minutes)
  • Distribute whiteboards and markers to each student.
  • Read aloud a short story from your classroom library.
  • Ask students to write or draw what happens at different parts in the book (eg., write or draw what happens in the middle of the story).
  • Tell students to hold up their whiteboard each time so that you can see their work.
(5 minutes)
  • Ask students to show you a thumbs up if they enjoyed listening to The Monkey KingAnd a thumbs down if they did not enjoy the story.
  • Call on students to give you some specific reasons why they did or not not enjoy the story. (Tip: Encourage students to speak using complete sentences, such as, "I like this story because ____.")
  • Ask students why they think it is important to think about the beginning, middle, and end of a story.
  • Call on volunteers to hear their answers.
  • Support students to see that identifying what happens in the beginning, middle, and end of a story helps the reader understand how organization and plot make a good story. This understanding will help them to become stronger writers as they write their own stories.

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