Prior to the lesson, have designated places for students to sit in their novel study groups.

Group Size: Any

Learning Objectives:

Students will read fluently.

Students will comprehend new text.

Students will effectively create summaries.

Students will visualize the text they are reading.

Students will learn about the events surrounding the Revolutionary War.


1. A Revolutionary War novel for each individual student

2. A Revolutionary War novel packet for each student

3. Discussion questions for each novel (attached in Daily Question folder and embedded in lesson)


Reading Schedule:

  • Sarah Bishop: Chapters 27-29
  • The Riddle of Penncroft Farm: Chapter 12
  • My Brother Sam is Dead: Chapter 11
  • Fighting Ground: Pages 107-121
1. Have students get into their Revolutionary War novel groups to discuss the reading from the day before.

2. Each student should share their question they created from the reading the day before. Encourage all students to have an opportunity to share their thoughts towards the question.

3. Have a variety of students share their summaries and see how them compare to those of their group members. Encourage them to add information or take information away if they feel it is necessary.

4. Have students begin reading for day 9.

5. Remind students to stop and discuss the reading, as well as document their gists. You may also want to hand out a reading guideline sheet for groups to use when an adult is not present. This sheet is located in the Introduction folder of this unit.

6. While reading, continually stop to ask questions. These questions could be used a study guide each week for the comprehension quiz or as a study guide for the final assessment. Below are the day's questions for each novel:

The Fighting Ground:
• Jonathan’s only plan is to find the road. Do you think he should have thought about a more thorough plan before now?
• What do you think is going through Jonathan’s mind now that he has escaped the Hessians with the boy?

• Do you think Jonathan is resentful towards the boy because he is doing all the work and the boy is just sleeping?
• Do you think you would do the same as Jonathan now?

• Do you think Jonathan will find his way to the Corporal? Why?
• Put yourself in Jonathan’s shoes, lost and all alone in the darkness, what emotions and feelings are you experiencing?

• How is Jonathan showing his determination?
• Have you ever experienced a similar situation to Jonathan when you were lost and afraid, but still determined to find your way?

• What do you think Jonathan will find when he reaches the light?

• Describe how Jonathan is acting while trying to get to the light.
• What do you think goes through Jonathan’s mind when he sees the Corporal?

• Why are all of the men so excited to see Jonathan when they didn’t pay him much mind when he first joined them in the morning?
• Why does the Corporal want to know where Jonathan was at?
• Why is the Corporal so interested in the Hessian soldiers that took Jonathan?
• What do you think is going through the Corporal’s mind when he realizes Jonathan had spotted him in the woods?
• Why is there such an urgency in the questions the Corporal is asking Jonathan?
• Does Jonathan still believe the Hessians had killed the boys parents? What is causing him to be a bit confused?
• What actually happened in the fight between the Hessians and Jonathan’s group? Is Jonathan surprised his group actually won?
• Why do the men believe the Hessians took Jonathan? Would he have been a useful prize?
• Do you think the men actually were trying to look for Jonathan when the Corporal didn’t even know who he was?
• Do you think the men are telling the truth when they said that they didn’t run, even though Jonathan didn’t see any of them in the fight?
• Why does Jonathan quickly mention that he tried to kill the soldiers?
• What do you think causes the boy to look up at the Corporal with great fear?
• How does the Corporal know where the Hessians are, but he never came looking for Jonathan?
• What was the Corporal doing at the house the evening before?

My Brother Sam is Dead
Chapter 11:
• Tim was in such a hurry to arrive at Dr. Hobart’s, why isn’t he in a hurry to get home?
• How was the doctor’s visit different from a visit you have today?
• What must be going through Tim’s mind knowing that Sam should be coming through Redding with Benedict Arnold?
• What did the British do with the rest of the men they took in Redding? What do you think will come of Jerry?
• Why does Tim need to ring the church bell?
• Why won’t mother allow Tim to go and ring the church bell?
• Why doesn’t mother believe in patriotism anymore?
• Tim used to think that generals were so grand and glorious, what causes him to think otherwise after seeing the Continentals?
• Why do you think the Continental soldiers were discussing Mr. Heron’s name? Why would this be a strange thing?
• Describe what Tim sees when he goes to the church looking for Sam? Does the war seem so glorious now?
• What emotions do you think were running through Tim and Sam as they embraced each other?
• Why didn’t Sam think his family would want to see him? Did he have the right impression?
• What did Sam try to do to help his father after the cowboys attack him?
• Why does mother insist that Sam must come home? Do you think Sam will be convinced?
• Why do you think Sam wants to reenlist with the military? Is he acting in a selfish manner?
• What pledge does Sam make with his fellow soldiers?
• What does Tim think Sam is wrong about?
• Why do you think Tim finally feels like Sam’s equal?

Sarah Bishop

Chapter 27:
• Describe Sarah’s hunting experience now that the snow has fallen.
• What metal object does Sarah see in the snow?
• How did the muskrat remind Sarah of herself?
• Why did Sarah take the muskrat home with her? What does this tell you about her character?
• What does Sarah discover chiseled on the trap that gives her a scare?
• Do you think Sam Goshen will discover where Sarah is living? How could this prove to be a bad sign for Sarah?

Chapter 28:
• Who does Sarah see when she is out walking in the snow? What state is he in?
• Sarah states that there is no way to tell how she felt when she saw Sam Goshen, what do you think she was feeling?
• What do you think Sarah should do with Sam?
• Why is it ironic that Sam was caught in his own bear trap?
• What causes Sarah to turn around and go back to Sam?
• Why do you think Sam didn’t recognize Sarah?
• How does Sarah help Sam?
• Why do you think Sarah walks away when Sam is freed from the trap? What causes her to go back to him?
• Why do you think Sarah ultimately takes Sam back to the cave with her? What does this tell you about her character?

Chapter 29:
• Why does Sarah build the fire for Sam in the far end of the cave, away from hers?
• Why do you think Sam has an attitude with Sarah that makes her feel as though it was his fault?
• What does Sam mean when he says to Sarah, “You want to be shut of me, I can see plain enough?”
• Why do you think Sarah keeps her knife hidden and carries her musket around with her all the time around Sam Goshen?
• Why do you think Sarah pours all of the charge and powder from Sam’s gun and then ultimately hides it? How will this benefit her?
• What annoys Sarah about having to feed Sam? How would you feel if you were in the same situation?
• Why does Sarah mention that John Longknife is coming back tonight even though she knows he won’t be back until spring?
• Why do you think Sam seems a bit uneasy knowing that an Indian may be coming to the cave today? Did Sarah make him feel the way she wanted him to? Explain.
The Riddle of Penncroft Farm
Chapter 12:
• Why didn’t Geordie tell his mother that Will was a spy?
• What happened at White Marsh and why is Geordie so interested in it?
• What reasons cause Washington and his men to go to Valley Forge?
• Why do you think the Continental Congress’s paper money is hardly worth anything, but people are still using it?
• What happened to Geordie’s father?
• What is leeching?
• What has happened to Will at Valley Forge?
• What thoughts do you think are racing through Geordie’s mind now knowing that his father and brother are both ill?
• Why is it perhaps a blessing that father is ill and he doesn’t know where Geordie is going? Do you think he would have approved of Geordie going to help Will if he wasn’t sick? Why?
• Describe the scene at the Valley Creek American camp.
• Why does Geordie wish his father could see the men at camp? Would it change his mind about the Continentals?
• Why does Geordie need to sleep by his horse, Buttercup?
• What new information does Ned Owens know about General Conway?
• What do the soldiers feel towards the Owens family? Why?
• What does it say about Geordie to help feed the rest of the sick men?

7. After students have completed their reading for the day, have them work on day 9 of their packet completion. They need to complete their gists, summaries, visualizations, as well as their questions to begin a discussion for the following day. Assign for homework if it is not completed.
8. If time remains, review the week 3 vocabulary with students (both whole class and enrichment group). Possible review ideas:
* Have students write answers on the board in teams. Read the definition and have two students on the board write the answer.
  • Hold up the vocabulary words on flashcards and have students shout out the answers.
  • Say the vocabulary definitions out loud and have students shout out the vocabulary word.
  • Have students play charades by acting out the words.
  • With partners, have students write sentences with partners using the words.
  • Have students play Pictionary and draw the words.
  • Have students draw pictures of the words with partners and write a caption of the picture using the vocabulary word.



Monitor student's ability to answer the comprehension questions for each day's readings.

Benchmark or Standards:

The Standards for the English Language Arts:

Students apply a wide range of strategies to comprehend, interpret, evaluate, and appreciate texts.

Students read a wide range of print and non-print texts to build an understanding of texts, of themselves, and of the cultures of the United States and the word; to acquire new information; to respond to the needs and demands of society and the workplace; and for personal fulfillment.

National Council for Social Studies Standards:


Understands the causes of the American Revolution, the ideas and interests involved in forging the revolutionary movement, and the reasons for the American victory.

Understands the impact of the American Revolution on politics, economy, and society.

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