Using the work of Tolkien in a school-age program can be done in an assortment of ways. The Hobbit is a fantastic work of fantasy literature that gives school-age children the chance to exercise the use of the previously mentioned elements. The Hobbit was written for Tolkien’s own children as a whimsical bedtime story filled with dwarves, magic, new worlds, battles, kings and more. It reinforces the imagination of childhood and allows them to think beyond the norm and push the boundaries. While The Hobbit is a lengthy piece of literature that may not be at the perfect reading level for your specific age group, it is an exceptional piece of literature when read aloud. Children from a young age can appreciate the story with its adventures and songs and the descriptions of elf kingdoms and magic. It truly is a masterpiece that young and old alike may find themselves enamored with.
When reading The Hobbit in a school-age classroom, there are many options. While older school-age students may be able to read the book themselves and break into groups for discussions or projects, this may not always be the case. For some groups it may be necessary to read the book aloud broken into chapters. After reading the chapters to students it may be necessary to discuss the events or symbolism so that the students can better understand the tale.
If it simply isn’t possible to utilize The Hobbit in its entirety, you may choose to use bits and pieces for something specific to your program. For example, you may use a small passage from the text to teach inference or for practice making predictions. The book can be used in many ways. The following pages include some example lesson plans to help you use Tolkien work in your school-age program.
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