For my mini lesson, I would teach grade 3 how to:
Describe characters in a story (e.g., their traits, motivations, or feelings) and explain how their actions contribute to the sequence of events.
I would begin my lesson by reading The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein. The book is about a big, tall tree meeting a young boy and their experiences throughout many years. Everyday the young boy would come to the tree and make a crown for his head from her leaves. As he grew older he did not come as often. Once, he needed money and the tree gave him apples to sell in the town. She was always happy to help and give him what he needed. The story continues with the same theme, all the way to the tree giving herself (trunk) to the little boy who is now a man. The book ends with the now old man returning to the tree appreciating all that she has done for him.
Throughout my storytelling, I would ask my students about guiding questions about the relationship between the tree and the boy. I would emphasize the feelings and traits between the tree and the boy. We would write on the board together a T-chart about characteristics of the tree and boy. At end my lesson, the class would recognize that the actions of the tree kept the boy happy and her love for the boy made her happy for a while. As a class we can go over the things that we are thankful for and appreciate what others do for us that sometimes we forget to thank them. We will remind ourselves of these things, why they push us to be better everyday, and remember to give back to them, too.