Today, we learned about plot: exposition, rising action, climax, falling action, resolution. The boring old diagram we all know so well.
But before we can get kids to understand the structure of the story, we have to engage them in the process. Pixar short films is a great way to do this and they are readily available on YouTube.
I put together a Prezi to introduce the concepts and model using a short Pixar film titled “For the Birds.” We walk through the parts of the plot together, then students work in small groups to analyze two other short Pixar films on their own.
After we finish this, we apply it to the story we read as a group.
Extension Activity: Have students create their own short animated film for the short story they read.