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text 2017-03-27 13:14
Sarah, Plain and Tall
Sarah, Plain and Tall - Patricia MacLachlan

I read this book in 5th grade and loved it! Set in the Midwestern United States during the late 19th century, Jacob Witting, a widowed farmer who is still saddened by the death of his wife during childbirth several years earlier, finds that taking care of his farm and two children, Anna and Caleb, is too difficult to handle alone. He writes an ad in the newspaper for a bride. Sarah Wheaton, from Maine, answers his ad and travels out to become his wife. The Lexile level is 560L. I would use this in a 4th or 5th grade classroom. I would use this in writing centers and have students write a letter to Sarah from the point of view from Anna and Caleb. Since Sarah, Plain and Tall is so descriptive of nature, another writing activity is to have the students paint a verbal picture of an object or place in nature, using carefully chosen adjectives, especially color and texture words. Students can then read their writings aloud to partners, and partners will attempt to draw the objects or places based on the author's carefully chosen words. This lesson focuses on word choice and sentence fluency.

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