Activity Overview

Stories, parables, and literature allow students to visualize different people, holidays, customs, and traditions within a particular religion in a more concrete way. There are many books related to Judaism that teachers can use to help students form a deeper understanding of the religion and the people who practice it. In this activity, students will illustrate the plot of a Jewish story.

This example is the story of Moses when he helped free the Israelites from slavery in Egypt and how this exodus is the basis for the Jewish holiday of Passover.

There are many other engaging books that introduce students to traditional stories and parables relating to Judaism and the history of the Jewish people. Here are some suggestions:

  • The Story of Passover by David A. Adler
  • Who Believes What? by Anna Wills
  • The Story of Hanukkah by David A. Adler
  • Treasury of Jewish Bedtime Stories by Shmuel Blitz
  • Holidays Around the World: Celebrate Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur by Deborah Heiligman
  • Walk With Y'Shua Through the Jewish Year by Janie-Sue Wertheim
  • New Year at the Pier: A Rosh Hashanah Story by April Halprin Wayland
  • Mitzvah Pizza by Sarah Lynn Scheerger
  • A Hat for Mrs. Goldman by Michelle Edwards
  • I Say Shehechiyanu by Joanne Rocklin
  • Here is the World: A Year of Jewish Holidays by Leslea Newman
  • The Always Prayer Shawl by Sheldon Oberman
  • It Could Always Be Worse by Margot Zemach
  • Gathering Sparks by Howard Schwartz
  • The Patchwork Torah by Allison Ofanansky
  • Never Say a Mean Word Again: A Tale from Medieval Spain by Jacqueline Jules
  • Goldie Takes a Stand by Barbara Krasner
  • Sabbath Lion: A Jewish Folktale from Algeria by Howard Schwartz
  • Osnat and Her Dove: The True Story of the World's First Female Rabbi by Sigal Samuel
  • Promise of a New Spring: The Holocaust by Gerda Weissmann Klein
  • Secret Seder by Doreen Rappaport
  • Star of Fear, Star of Hope by Jo Hoestlandt
  • A Hero and the Holocaust: The Story of Janusz Korczak and his Children by David A. Adler

Template and Class Instructions

(These instructions are completely customizable. After clicking "Use This Assignment With My Students", update the instructions on the Edit Tab of the assignment.)

Due Date:

Objective: After listening to the story, create a narrative storyboard that includes important details from the beginning, middle, and end of the story.

Student Instructions:

  1. In about 3-5 cells, write the major details of the story in order of occurrence.
  2. Add appropriate scenes, characters and items to illustrate each cell. The Creator has each animal from the story.

Requirements: Beginning, Middle, and End of the story.

Lesson Plan Reference

Grade Level 6-8

Difficulty Level 3 (Developing to Mastery)

Type of Assignment Individual

Common Core Standards
  • [ELA-Literacy/W/9-10/2] Write informative/explanatory texts to examine and convey complex ideas, concepts, and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content
  • [ELA-Literacy/W/9-10/6] Use technology, including the Internet, to produce, publish, and update individual or shared writing products, taking advantage of technology’s capacity to link to other information and to display information flexibly and dynamically
  • [ELA-Literacy/W/9-10/7] Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects to answer a question (including a self-generated question) or solve a problem; narrow or broaden the inquiry when appropriate; synthesize multiple sources on the subject, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation


(You can also create your own on Quick Rubric.)

Plot Diagram Rubric
Create a visual Plot Diagram that summarizes the story. The storyboard should have six cells: Title, Exposition, Rising Action, Climax, Falling Action, and Resolution. Below each cell, type in a description of that part of the story.
Proficient Emerging Beginning
Cells include images that help to tell the story and do not get in the way of understanding. Descriptions match the images.
Descriptions do not always match the images.
Descriptions are missing or do not match the images.
Each of the six cells represents a different part of the story. The cells are in order from beginning to end.
Two cells or fewer are out of order, or the storyboard is missing important information.
Important information is missing and/or three or more cells are out of order.
Spelling and Grammar
Spelling and grammar is mostly accurate. Mistakes do not get in the way of understanding.
Spelling is very inaccurate and hinders full understanding.
Text is difficult to understand.

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