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McCale Ashenbrener

McCale Ashenbrener


National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE)



Boise, ID
Secondary Spanish and Language Arts Teacher

"ReadWriteThink is a fabulous resource for dynamic, engaging lessons without hours of prep time."

McCale Ashenbrener's Story
ReadWriteThink, a fairy godmother for busy teachers

I teach in a small rural district where every day I get to prepare six classes, Junior and Freshman English and Spanish 1, 2, 3 and Elementary Spanish. Needless to say I am often winging it and scrambling to craft awesome, well-designed curriculum. I feel like ReadWriteThink is my lesson planning fairy godmother. Speaking of, I used multiple RWT resources to create my fairy tale unit where we read common elements and situations of fairy tales. After a quick RWT characterization lesson with the Cat in the Hat, we read The Glass Slipper by Charles Perrault and different versions of Cinderella in various cultures, comparing and contrasting the characterization of Cinderella using RWT's awesome Venn Diagram interactive. Students then created an artistic representation of the two stories and defended their decisions with quotes. We analyzed how fairy tales help us to gain knowledge of the world and how that is reflected in the various cultural versions we explored, critiquing how this “moral instruction” often leads to outdated gender roles for both women and men. Students then modernize these outdated archetypes when writing their own fairy tale with the assistance of RWT’s Story Map interactive to help them organize their ideas. I even used the local and global peer evaluation resources to help us workshop our finished fairy tales. Thank you ReadWriteThink for being an amazing resource for busy teachers through your clear and thorough lesson planning, depth and magic.



Related Resources

Grades   6 – 8  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson

Once Upon a Fairy Tale: Teaching Revision as a Concept

Students use fractured fairy tales to practice revision and editing as separate activities when they write their own versions of fairy tales.


Grades   K – 12  |  Student Interactive  |  Organizing & Summarizing

Story Map

The Story Map interactive is designed to assist students in prewriting and postreading activities by focusing on the key elements of character, setting, conflict, and resolution.


Grades   K – 12  |  Student Interactive  |  Organizing & Summarizing

Venn Diagram

This interactive tool allows students to create Venn diagrams that contain two or three overlapping circles, enabling them to organize their information logically.


Story Highlights  

McCale Ashenbrener is a secondary Language Arts and Spanish teacher at Sage International School. She received her Masters of Education from Portland State University, Oregon but returned to her home state of Idaho to enjoy the wilderness and rivers. She is an avid traveler and has spent many years kayaking and river guiding. She just completed a semester in Mexico as a Fulbright Distinguished Awards in Teaching recipient. She loves sharing her enthusiasm for adventure, experience and lifelong learning with her students.