Prior to the lesson, have designated places for students to sit in their novel study groups.

Group Size: Any

Learning Objectives:

Students will read fluently.

Students will comprehend new text.

Students will effectively create summaries.

Students will visualize the text they are reading.

Students will learn about the events surrounding the Revolutionary War.


1. A Revolutionary War novel for each individual student

2. A Revolutionary War novel packet for each student

3. Discussion questions for each novel (attached in Daily Question folder and embedded in lesson)


Reading Schedule:

  • Sarah Bishop: Chapters 20-22
  • The Riddle of Penncroft Farm: Chapter 9
  • My Brother Sam is Dead: Chapter 9
  • Fighting Ground: Pages 80-94
1. Have students get into their Revolutionary War novel groups to discuss the reading from the day before.

2. Each student should share their question they created from the reading the day before. Encourage all students to have an opportunity to share their thoughts towards the question.

3. Have a variety of students share their summaries and see how them compare to those of their group members. Encourage them to add information or take information away if they feel it is necessary.

4. Have students begin reading for day 7.

5. Remind students to stop and discuss the reading, as well as document their gists. You may also want to hand out a reading guideline sheet for groups to use when an adult is not present. This sheet is located in the Introduction folder of this unit.

6. While reading, continually stop to ask questions. These questions could be used a study guide each week for the comprehension quiz or as a study guide for the final assessment. Below are the day's questions for each novel:

The Fighting Ground:
• Why is it important for Jonathan to not have the child speak?
• What do you think Jonathan should do about the child?
• Why do you think the young boy is not answering Jonathan’s questions?
• How does milking the cow help to sooth Jonathan’s nerves?
• How do the Hessians help to make Jonathan more comfortable and to help ease his hunger?
• Are the Hessians Jonathan’s friends or enemies? Explain.
• Should the young Hessian be completely trusting of Jonathan? Why or why not?
• What do you think Jonathan will do now that he knows the soldier trusts him?

• Why does Jonathan angle the barn door a certain way?
• Why do you think Jonathan wants to take the young boy to the house with the Hessians?
• What causes Jonathan to pause briefly before he opens the door to the house?

• Why aren’t the Hessians too interested in the boy?
• Where do you think the boy is going to lead Jonathan and the Hessians to?

• What do you think happened to the young boy’s parents?
• Why do you think the boy’s face is blank with no emotion?
• Why don’t you think the Hessians reacted more to the dead bodies laying on the ground?
• What causes Jonathan to think that the Hessians might have killed the boy’s parents?
• Do you think the Hessians killed the boy’s parents? Why or why not?

• Why does Jonathan want to give the soldiers a chance to prove his theory of them killing the boy’s parents wrong?
• Why do you think the Hessians allowed Jonathan to go out and bury the bodies without them coming along to supervise?
• Why do you think it is important for Jonathan to bury the boy’s parents?

My Brother Sam is Dead

Chapter 9:
• How can the snow work in Tim and his father’s favor?
• Why does father ride ahead a few miles of Tim and then come back to check on him? Do you think this is a good system?
• Why is Tim not very fond of riding alone most of the time with the oxen?
• Why do you think so many people are coming out from Ridgebury looking at Tim and his father? Do you think this will cause any danger for them? Why?
• How does Tim decide to pass the time on the ride and not think about the cold?
• What do you think has happened to father?
• What do you think is going through Tim’s mind when he realizes he has seen his father for quite some time?
• What are some causes Tim thinks might have prevented his father from coming back to him?
• What sign does Tim see that alerts him to the fact that father is not alone?
• What do you think has happened to father?
• What does Tim do once he realizes father is gone?
• Why wouldn’t it be smart for Tim to try to find father and rescue him? What do you think you would want to do in this situation?
• Why does Tim try to act so brave in front of the cowboys even though they are directly in his path?
• Why does Tim thank the men for being his escorts? Why is this a smart move on his part?
• How does Tim’s story about the escorts cause the cowboys to get scared?
• Tim’s story is both happy and sad. Why?

Sarah Bishop

Chapter 20:
• What does the black girl at the tavern remind Sarah of?
• Do you think Sarah should tell the black girl about the wanted poster?
• How are Sarah and the black girl similar?
• Why does the black girl say “That’s close,” when she hears that Sarah read about her at the Lion and Lamb Tavern?
• Why does Sarah say, “I want to stand up and shoot somebody?” Who is she referring to and why?
• Why does Sarah want to trade places with the girl?
• Do you think the wilderness is a good place for Sarah to run to? Why?
• Do you agree with Sarah when she says that she has fled far enough?

Chapter 21:
• What does Sarah purchase at the Thomas Morton and Son shop? How will these items be beneficial for her?
• Why does Mr. Morton ask about Sarah’s musket? Does he have a right to ask her about it?
• Why does Sarah try to avoid Sam Goshen?
• Where do you think the black girl was heading to when she passed Sarah on the road? Do you think they should have paired up to help each other?
• Do you think the British will come looking for Sarah in the wilderness?
• Describe what Sarah sees as she is walking to the wilderness.
• Where does Sarah find a place to rest? Do you think this is a good place for her?

Chapter 22:
• Describe the setting of the cave.
• Sarah realizes that people had lived in the cave at one time, do you think they will be coming back? Why?
• Why does Sarah decide to settle in the cave?
• Describe what Sarah does to make the cave more livable for her?
• What is Sarah’s relationship with the small white bat?
The Riddle of Penncroft Farm
Chapter 9:
• Why do you think Lars asks Geordie about the secret room in the barn where they had hidden Will?
• What was the purpose of Edward Owens stopping by Penncroft Farm?
• Why is Lars’s whole family shocked by Edward Owens announcement?
• Why do you think the field trip to Brandywine is so thrilling for Lars?
• Why weren’t people able to tell a man’s allegiance to the war by his accent alone during the Revolutionary War time period?
• Do you think it is polite for Lars to be disagreeing with the teacher? Does he have any proof to back up his thoughts?
• Is Eddie Owens right in stating that the boy who warned Washington was his ancestor? How do you know?
• Why can’t Lars set Eddie Owens straight and give him the correct information?
• What had Eddie Owens’s family member actually tell George Washington? What would Eddie think if he knew this information?
• What was the toy soldier souvenir Lars sees in the museum? What do you think is running through his mind after seeing it?
• Why is Lars so anxious to get back to Penncroft farm?
• What do you think Lars feels about moving to Pennsylvania now?

7. After students have completed their reading for the day, have them work on day 7 of their packet completion. They need to complete their gists, summaries, visualizations, as well as their questions to begin a discussion for the following day. Assign for homework if it is not completed.



Monitor student's ability to answer the comprehension questions for each day's readings.

Benchmark or Standards:

The Standards for the English Language Arts:

Students apply a wide range of strategies to comprehend, interpret, evaluate, and appreciate texts.

Students read a wide range of print and non-print texts to build an understanding of texts, of themselves, and of the cultures of the United States and the word; to acquire new information; to respond to the needs and demands of society and the workplace; and for personal fulfillment.

National Council for Social Studies Standards:


Understands the causes of the American Revolution, the ideas and interests involved in forging the revolutionary movement, and the reasons for the American victory.

Understands the impact of the American Revolution on politics, economy, and society.

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