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Create a plot-line using digital tools | Be a Savvy Reader | 3-5, 6-8

Student Objective

Students will be able to:
1. Create a plot line for a narrative using a digital tool


Materials Needed:

  • (Partial) Exemplar plot line on Sutori
    • Note: select TIMELINE TEMPLATE
    • Tutorial for Sutori (for teachers)
  • (Partial) Exemplar brainstorming on
  • Each student requires a computer
  • Students will need to make accounts for Sutori and using email (make a free one with gmail)

Step 1: Own It – “What your moment or scene from your favorite book?  Why?

  • Think-Pair-Share:
    • What’s your favorite scene or moment from your favorite book?  Why?
    • If that scene was taken out of the book, how would it have affected the overall story?

Step 2: Learn it – Elements of a Plot Line Using a Digital Tool

  • Share exemplar plot line worked out with Sutori
    • Name the elements:
      • Story Pieces
        • Beginning
        • Middle
        • End
      • Each Piece Requires
        • 2-3 scenes per story piece
        • one sentence description per scene
        • one picture representing scene/moment
        • one quote from the text that summarizes/represents the scene

Step 3: Learn It – Brainstorming Plot Line with

  • Share exemplar brainstorming with
  • Model for students how to use

Step 4: Have students Brainstorm Plot Line with

  • Provide students time to brainstorm

Step 5: Have students make plot line with Sutori

  • Provide students time to begin their plot line
  • Scaffolding:
    • Model again how to import images
    • Model again how to create plot line as needed

Step 6: Extend Lesson and End

  • Pose the following question to students:
    • Review your plot line.
    • Now remove one scene.
    • How does that removal affect the plot line?
    • Do your plot line over again, assuming that scene never happened.
      • In other words: share the “What if” story–the story that would have happened IF that scene never happened


This instructional idea has students breaking down a narrative into its component parts, which is the purpose for the original outline. Next, by answering the questions and then recreating the plot line based on their responses, students are developing descriptive models for alternatives to the narrative.

EdTech used in this activity:


Alternative Ed Tech you could use:

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