Lesson Plan 4: From The Mouse’s Point Of View
5th Grade Classroom
Objective: Students will write a short story from Amos’ point of view about one of Benjamin Franklin
inventions not mentioned in Ben and Me.
Computers with Internet access for researching the site: http://sln.fi.edu/franklin/inventor/inventor.html
Computers with a word processing program for typing up stories (optional and requires more time)
Ben and Me books
Plain white paper
Lost Chapters of Ben and Me Activity
Estimated Time: 120 minutes
Motivation:Write on the board or ask aloud, “what inventions has Amos talked about in the book?”
Write student responses on the board. Ask, “are these all the inventions that Benjamin Franklin made?” Simply say, “no, these are not all his inventions. We are going to change that today.” Total time: 1 min.
1. Instruct students to take out their books and read chapter 13 to them as they follow along.
Total time: 10 min.
2. After you are done reading, have students read chapter 14 among their group as they have throughout
this unit. Total time 8 min.
3. As the students are taking out their journals, write on the board, “what does the term LIBERTY AND
JUSTICE FOREVER mean to you as it was used in chapter 13?” Give students approximately 5
minutes to write in their journals. Total time: 5 min.
4. Give students approximately 5 minutes to discuss their answers with their peers. Total time: 5 min.
5. Inform students that although there is only one chapter left in the book, that you believe that Amos left out
a great deal, especially about all the other inventions that Benjamin Franklin created. Therefore, it is
going to be their job to write a short story from the point of view of Amos on one of Benjamin
Franklin’s inventions that was not mentioned in the story.
6. Hand out the Lost Chapters of Ben and Me activity sheet. Read the directions aloud as they follow
along. Explain that since they are writing the story from Amos’ point of view, they must write as if they
were Amos. In order to accomplish this they will have to go through the book and see what type of
words Amos uses and how he describes things. It is imperative that the students understand that they
are to use their most creative language arts abilities when writing this story. The teacher should
emphasize the use of adjectives to “paint a picture” for the reader instead of simply describing what
happened. Total time: 8 min.
7. The students whose turn it is to use the computer(s) with Internet access should type the address listed
above into the address bar and hit the “enter” key on the keyboard.
8. The other students will get a copy of the page that the students on the computer will be visiting.
9. All students will engage in some measure of research using either the Internet, multi-media software,
books on inventions (a list of useful books can be found in the bibliography), and bound encyclopedias.
10. Remind students that they are to choose an invention that is not listed in the book. Students are to also
illustrate their story as it might appear in the book.
11. Explain that they will have the remainder of the period and this evening to work on their story.
Tomorrow, they will edit their stories in class with the help of their classmates, complete the final
product and hand in their Lost Chapter to be bound with everyone else’s and added to the classroom
library. Total time: 23 min.
1. Students will be graded on the use of adjectives and other writing strategies that show rather than tell.
2. Students will be graded on the accuracy of the information that they collect from their resources.
3. Students will be graded on the using appropriate details, as they would appear from the point of view of
4. Students will be graded on neatness, correct spelling, sentence structure, and adherence to directions.
1. Students will add 2 more words of their own to their dictionary.
2. Students will finish their story rough drafts and illustration(s).
This author suggests giving students plenty of time to explore their resources for gathering information on inventions not listed in the book and reviewing the manner in that Amos writes and describes things. Encourage students to help each other in this process by editing each other’s work, providing ideas or feedback, or simple conversation as they work.
Students will have approximately 20 minutes to work on this project in class and the evening to finish their drafts and pictures, so tomorrow they should be ready to edit and produce their final versions. Begin tomorrow by reading the final chapter in the story and allowing students to voice what they thought about the story in their journals. Thereafter, students should get approximately 8 minutes to edit and 10 min to make their changes. Once the timer goes off, ask for student volunteers to read their Lost Chapter to the class. If only a few volunteer, pick several non-volunteers to present to the class.
Adapted from Linda Scott’s Ben and Me Cyberguide and the San Diego County Office of Education.