The Mitten Webquest
by Mrs. M. Murray at Warren Elementary School
Introduction   Task    Process   Evaluation Page   Conclusion  Credits
This webquest is a fun way to incorporate the winter thematic unit, a science discussion of the way some animals survive wintertime, and an author study of Jan Brett.  This unit was designed for first graders but it can easily be adapted for use in other grade levels.

The Task
The students will use the Internet to research the elements of literacy including author and illustrator, characters, and setting of the story, The Mitten.  The students will have the opportunity to create a play based on the story by selecting a role of playwright, actor, set designer, or costumer designer.  After the performance of the play, the audience will be asked to complete a review.

The Process
This webquest was designed to be used in a classroom setting.  With younger aged students, this project is recommended that the tasks be completed witha cross-age computer buddy or guided by a teacher as a whole class unit.  Completing the tasks as a a whole group would require the availability of a computer projection system or a television connected to a classroom computer.  During the whole group activities, the student involvement should be encouraged through participation in shared reading or comprehension activities. Students can be chosen to control the mouse and navigate through the Web sites. Completing cluster maps as a group and writing the play should be language experience activities in which children can contribute ideas and the teacher can record their responses. Other activities, such as drawing their favorite animal character with Kid Pix, drawing a winter setting with Kid Pix and painting the setting for the play, can be completed individually by the students. Creating the costumes for the play became a collaborative project with the families of the students by requesting specific colored clothing.

Student Introduction

  • Step 1:  Read The Mitten by Jan Brett with your class.
  • Step 2:  Learn about Jan Brett, the author and illustrator of The Mitten.
  • Step 3:  Learn about the winter setting of the story.
  • Step 4:  Learn about the animal characters in the story.
  • Step 5:  Choose a job to help create the play and work with your team to complete your job.
  • Step 6:  Put on a performance of the play for your classmates and families.

Click here to print a rubric to evaluate the students in this activity. 

Your students have used the internet to more fully comprehend the literacy elements of the author, setting and characters of the book, The Mitten by Jan Brett.  They then had the opportunity to respond to the literature by creating their own play based on the story of The Mitten.

Thank you to Candace Szalay at Grant Elementary in San Diego, California for the ideas behind this project.