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Simple Solutions Reading Comprehension K

Writing Task Activity

Kissing Hand

Story mapping is the ability to identify the components of a story—setting and characters, as well as the sequence of the story (beginning, middle, and end). Story mapping is an important skill that contributes to a student’s ability to comprehend what he/she has read. This skill is particularly important when reading narrative texts, but it is also an important component for problem-solving skills across a wide range of subject matters.[1]

This writing activity allows students to practice the skill of summarizing a story through story mapping.

The Kissing Hand

By Audrey Penn
(fictional narrative)

Part 1: Standards Addressed in This Activity

W.K.1Use a combination of drawing, dictating, and writing to compose opinion pieces in which students tell a reader the topic or the name of the book they are writing about and state an opinion or preference about the topic or book.
W.K.3Use a combination of drawing, dictating, and writing to narrate a single event or several loosely linked events, tell about the events in the order in which they occurred, and provide a reaction to what happened.
RL.K.3With prompting and support, identify characters, settings, and major events in a story.
RL.K.10Actively engage in group reading activities with purpose and understanding.
SL.K.5Add drawings or other visual displays to description as desired to provide additional details.

Part 2: Description of Activity

The student will summarize the story, The Kissing Hand by Audrey Penn, by drawing the parts of a story map. (See Handout). Students will learn or review the elements of a story:

  • The title of the book
  • The setting and characters in the story
  • What happens at the beginning, middle, and end of the story

Part 3: Teacher and Student Instructions

  1. Read The Kissing Hand by Audrey Penn if it is available in your classroom or in your school’s library. If it is not available, the link provided is a YouTube video of the story being read aloud.
  2. After the reading, remind your students that a story has many elements including setting and characters, and that a story has a beginning, a middle, and an end.
  3. Hand out the Story Map worksheet to each of your students and explain to them what they will be asked to draw.
  4. Allow students to confer with the teacher or peers if they have questions.
  5. Once completed, have students share their story maps with the class and/or display them.

Part 4: Materials

  1. Story Map handout
  2. Pencils, crayons, markers, colored pencils, paints


About the author

Susie O'Neal

Susie has a master’s degree in educational psychology. She was an adjunct professor of psychology for eight years prior to coming to Simple Solutions in 2018. She works in the editing and proofreading department as a proofreader. Outside of work, she loves to read, is actively involved in the music program at her church, and enjoys spending time with her husband and her dog, Cooper.

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