Lesson Plans and Classroom Resources
We have been busy developing lesson plans to go along with some of Mark Twain’s books and short stories. The plans below were developed during teacher workshops held at the museum beginning in the summer of 2006 and sponsored by the Missouri Humanities Council. Each year we offer week-long teacher workshops, and these lesson plans are the result of their efforts. The lesson plans are organized by books/stories and by the concept that is emphasized in the lesson. All lesson plans are PDFs. We hope that instead of focusing on teaching and testing you will focus on reading and sharing with students. This is a proven way for them to get the most out of any literary endeavor! Twain is best when read aloud and discussed!
The Museum is now focusing on the Common Core State Standards and has created a unit plan using Mark Twain: Words & Music as a model for addressing these standards through integrated curriculum. This is free to download and modify as needed.
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
This creative writing unit can be provided to students to guide them through their reading of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and to inspire them to use their own experiences to launch a creative writing project. The packet contains photographs relating to settings and events in the book with corresponding page numbers.
These reading and activity suggestions were created by Quincy University graduate student, Miranda Edgar. Teachers can pick and choose from a broad assortment of engaging ideas.
Instead of the usual summaries and quizzes, use some of these fun reading comprehension activities when reading The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. Your students will thank you, and you’ll enjoy their creativity. (Includes differentiation strategies for gifted students.)
The Big Read, sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts, has selected The Adventures of Tom Sawyer as one of its community reading books. We encourage you to contact them and plan a Big Read event in your community using Tom Sawyer. They offer comprehensive lesson plans for the classroom.
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer is set in the fictional town of St. Petersburg, which Mark Twain based on Hannibal. All of the sights he described – from Cardiff Hill to Jackson’s Island to Becky Thatcher’s house – exist right here in Hannibal. Teachers, if you cannot bring your students on a field trip, you can at least take them on a Virtual tour of these important literary landmarks. The Mark Twain Young Authors have created virtual tours of the landmarks and the museum gallery that include pictures, descriptions, and quotes from Mark Twain’s books.