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Activity Overview

The setting of a story includes where and when the story takes place. Settings in historical fiction novels are particularly important, as they represent real locations, time periods, and events that actually took place. In A Long Walk to Water, when the story takes place is extremely important; some of the story takes place in 1985, and some of it takes place in 2009. Readers learn that, although their stories take place 24 years apart, Salva and Nya have a great deal in common, such as war and other obstacles. The locations are also crucial; the climate and geography of Ethiopia and Sudan are similar, making access to water challenging and dangerous. This is another commonality that Salva and Nya share. For this activity, students will describe and illustrate the different settings in A Long Walk to Water.

Template and Class Instructions

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Due Date:

Objective: Create a storyboard that describes and illustrates the setting of A Long Walk to Water. You must incorporate where and when in your storyboards

Student Instructions:

  1. Write a setting in each heading.
  2. Create an illustration that represents each heading using appropriate scenes, characters, and items.
  3. Write a short summary of each heading/belief in the space below the illustration.


Lesson Plan Reference

Common Core Standards
  • [ELA-Literacy/RL/5/3] Compare and contrast two or more characters, settings, or events in a story or drama, drawing on specific details in the text (e.g., how characters interact).


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