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Author, Author

Subject: Language Arts, Literature, Special Ed.
Grade: 6-8, 9-12

Brief Description

This plan that can be used over the entire semester or throughout the year as an extra credit plan that helps familiarize your students with the classic authors, encourages organization and strategy. Kids love to collect, and if you capture their attention early enough they might even do it on their own.


  • Students will receive an Author Card as a reward for good work on any assignment.
  • Students will collect the cards over the semester (or throughout the year) and try to make a complete set.They will be encouraged to keep track of what they have collected and what other students have collected with the option to trade duplicate cards.


    authors, English, literature, collecting, classics, reading, template, project, extra credit

    Materials Needed

    Microsoft Word 97 Author Card template offered free at my website English Teacher Tech, business card sheets available for inkjet and laser printers
    (Teacher's note: The template can be modified and even expanded to add more authors to the plan. Teachers might want to purchase plastic sleeves that are available for storing business cards. The students could purchase these so that they can keep the cards neatly in their notebooks until time to turn them in.)

    Lesson Plan

  • Print out at least one sheet of cards using the Microsoft Word 97 Author Card template. For use with the entire semester, you might want to print out a batch of cards ahead of time.
  • Introduce your students to the amazing number of writers who have written fiction, poetry, essay, and drama over the last several hundred years by orally quizzing how many they know. You can use the list on the back of the Author Cards for starters.
  • Show the cards to the students and tell them that they will receive one card every time their work (written or otherwise) is up to your standards. You might want to define these standards for the students. It could be based on top grades, neatness, or completion. You might even want to give cards for perfect attendance or participation.

    Teacher's note: Here's the way I handle it.

  • Collect a complete set of cards by (set date) and you will get 10 extra credit points for the first set added to your term points.
  • You may trade cards with fellow students to collect a complete set, but they must be original cards. No photocopies will be acceptable.
  • Cards must be kept in good condition. No soiled or damaged cards will be accepted.
  • There are 6 cards in a set, numbered 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6.
  • There are more of the 3, 4, 5, 6 cards. The 1 and 2 cards will be harder to come by.
  • The sets of six will be made from an actual set of 10 picture cards with the following authors: Jane Austen, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, T. S. Eliot, Amy Lowell, Guy de Maupassant, Herman Melville, O. Henry, George Orwell, Edgar Allan Poe, and Mark Twain.
  • One of the cards is a color picture of Mark Twain. If you have a set with this picture in it, you will get an additional 2 extra credit points.
  • When you have a complete set, turn it in to your teacher to receive credit.
  • You may collect more than one set, but you will only receive 5 points for subsequent sets.

    Modifications: Teachers might like to modify this plan by making it a specific assignment where students have to collect all of the cards and learn the authors' names and birth dates. Teachers could also extend this into a research project where students would have to find out details about the author and perhaps include this information on the cards they turn in.


    Assessment will be based on teacher examination of the final collections, since there is no testing involved. Points will be awarded for complete sets only.

    Lesson Plan Source

    Submitted by: Albert Baggetta, ([email protected])Agawam High School, Agawam, Massachusetts



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