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Lesson Plan #: AELP-GRM0202
Submitted by: Jill DeFelice
Email: yankeesabroad@aol.com
School/University/Affiliation: Anglo-American School of Moscow

February 28, 2001

Grade Level: 1, 2


  • Language Arts/Grammar

Duration: 45-50 minutes

Description: In this lesson, students learn about compound words and have an opportunity to create new compound word inventions or creatures. Students create advertisements to describe their new words.


  • Students will develop an understanding of how compound words are formed.
  • Students will learn about persuasive techniques used in advertising.
  • Objectives:

  • Students will be able to identify compound words.
  • Students will be able to successfully combine different nouns to form compound words.
  • Students will create advertisements which accurately depict their new compound words.
  • Materials:

    • small slips of paper
    • drawing paper (for advertisements)
    • pencils
    • crayons and markers

    Introduce the term, compound word. A compound word is formed when two words are joined to make a new word. Give examples of compound words, such as baseball, sandbox, blackboard, etc. Ask students to contribute other examples. Explain that each component of a compound word has a meaning by itself. When the two words are put together, the meaning of the new word has to contain elements of both. Explain that some compound words are directional, such as downstairs or inside, while others may be composed of two nouns such as cupboard or airplane. 

    Inform students that they will have a chance to create some new compound words. Give each student two slips of paper, and ask each student to write one word on each slip. Gather all of the slips of paper and put them in a hat (or other container). Mix up the slips of paper and have each student select two slips. Each student combines the two words to form a compound word invention or creature. Next, each student creates an advertisement which shows a picture of the invention or creature. Students should also include a description which persuades people to buy the object. [Examples: cheetahcookies that have spots and tickle your tongue with the fur; jetdogs that you can fold up thin on an airplane so you don’t have to send them in baggage; and crocodilebags that are sleeping bags shaped like crocodiles and snap shut to keep you warm.]

    [ Author’s Note: My first grade class had not done this type of writing before, so I took off an old shoe and made exaggerated statements about the shoe as if I were trying to sell it to them. Then I asked the students to suggest other things that I could say to get people to buy the shoe. This was sufficient for most of my first graders.] Assessment: Children must successfully combine both word elements into one new idea while retaining elements of each part. Assess students on their use of interesting descriptive words along with persuasive writing.

    Special Comments: This activity was adapted from a mentor teacher, KayLynne Matheson, who should be given credit for a great idea. Students in first grade had difficulty with the activity at first and needed prompting, but they embraced it once they understood the concept.