In an effort to support our amazing educators, we have officially launched the National Steinbeck Center’s Educational Resources web page, where you will find interactive lesson plans from our award-winning Red Pony curriculum, fun activities, interactive content and more that can be enjoyed from the comfort of your home.
Interactive Activity 1 – Steinbeck Coloring Sheets
Interactive Activity 2 – “Writing a Letter” Lesson Plan
Nowadays, writing letters can be a fun and quarantine-compliant way to show solidarity with one another. Learn to write a compelling letter to your favorite recipient by downloading our Red Pony curriculum “Writing a Letter” lesson plan from our Educational Resources web page.
During John Steinbeck’s lifetime, letter writing was one of the most popular forms of communication.
Interactive Activity 3 – “Preparing a Veterinarian Report” Lesson Plan
Today we’ll discover what it’s like to be a vet and learn about the fascinating world of horses! Tag us on social media with the hashtag #SteinbeckCenter with your favorite animal friend for a chance to be featured in our stories!
“No matter how good a man is, there’s always some horse can pitch him.”
-John Steinbeck, The Red Pony
Interactive Activity 4 – “Steinbeck Lotería / Mexican Bingo” Lesson Plan
Today we’re going to have a fun bilingual activity with “Steinbeck Lotería / Mexican Bingo”!
All the materials you will need to play this game are available on the download link above, including instructions and “Lotería” game cards. If you have any questions or if you’d like to suggest more interactive lesson plans, please send us an email to: SYA@steinbeck.org.
We also invite you to take a video or photo of your favorite board games and tag us @steinbeckcenter on your posts and we will share our favorites on our Instagram stories.
Interactive Activity 5 – Interactive Activity 5 – Steinbeck Crossword Puzzle
Interactive Activity 6 – Steinbeck Scavenger Hunt
Today we invite you to take your Steinbeck knowledge and powers of deduction by participating in our virtual scavenger hunt! Download the clues from the link above (or click here) and use our virtual museum tour by visiting here (or here: www.steinbeck.org/visit/virtual-tour) to find the answers to the questions.
Record the time that it takes you to complete it and share it on our social media: www.facebook.com/nationalsteinbeckcenter!
YouTube Video Series – “Of Mice and Men” Read by Bryan Starchman
After the announcement that school is officially cancelled until the fall, our friend and writer, teacher, and podcaster Bryan Starchman has begun reading John Steinbeck’s “Of Mice and Me” from his car around different San Francisco locales so that students can still enjoy this novel. Usually it would be taught to freshmen at his high school during the Spring semester and we’re thrilled to share these educational videos with you.
Bryan was traveling to all 50 states in 120 days in honor of the 60th anniversary of John Steinbeck’s travelogue “Travels with Charley” and as Steinbeck once said: “We find after years of struggle that we do not take a trip, a trip takes us”.
You can read Bryan’s latest blog post, which continues to be updated on our website, by clicking here.
For more information on Bryan’s journey, please visit UnitedScenes.com or follow him on Instagram @UnitedScenesofAmerica and on Twitter @UnitedScenes
Click on the links below to see the videos:
- Of Mice and Men: Introduction
- Of Mice and Men: Chapter 1, Part 1 of 2
- Of Mice and Men: Chapter 1, Part 2 of 2
Interactive Activity 7 – Share Your Family Stories
Did you know that John Steinbeck’s maternal grandfather, Samuel Hamilton, was from Ireland and was one of the pioneer settlers of the town of Salinas during the 1850s? Steinbeck’s family history can be traced all the way back to his European roots. While we are all spending more quality time with our families at home, why not dive into your families’ histories and discover new tales about your past and ancestors.
Straight from our National Steinbeck Center Vault we are sharing a set of bilingual activities from our “A Century Ago in Steinbeck Country” Curriculum for Grade 3 that will provide students with a model for asking the right questions to dig deeper into their family history and find some true gems. Download the “Family Stories Lesson Plan for Grade 3” activities from the link above or click here!
Photo Credit: Image from “The Red Pony” 1945 Illustrated Viking Press Edition, NSC Archives Collection
Interactive Activity 8 – Teaching The Pearl Curriculum Guide: Writing an I AM Poem
Grade level: 3rd Grade and Up
Poetry is a creative form of writing that allows people to express their feelings and ideas through the use of distinctive style and rhythm. Use the “I AM” model below to craft a poem from the point of view of a character from John Steinbeck’s novels or short stories. You can also choose to write one after a literary character that you read about recently. The poem should be no longer than one page. Study the poem on the second page to give you a better idea of how your poem can look like.
Let’s celebrate National Poetry Month together by show us your dramatic reading abilities and recording yourself (with your parent/guardian’s permission) reading it out loud portraying the character you chose and hash tagging #SteinbeckFromHome for a chance to be featured in our social media accounts. Be creative and have fun!
We hope you like it and check back regularly for new educational activities!
And while the National Steinbeck Center is closed, you can support us by clicking here to make a donation. Thank you for supporting us!