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What’s the Story?

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Students will plan and organize a group writing assignment based on the 2002 quarter reverse designs.

Coin Type(s)

  • Quarter

Coin Program(s)

  • 50 State Quarters


Students will plan and organize a group writing assignment based on the 2002 quarter reverse designs.

Major Subject Area Connections

  • Language Arts
  • Social Studies


  • Fourth grade
  • Fifth grade
  • Sixth grade

Class Time

Sessions: One
Session Length: 45-60 minutes
Total Length: 46-90 minutes


  • Small groups

Background Knowledge

Students should have basic knowledge of symbols.

Terms and Concepts

Coin design


  • 5 copies of each of the 2002 quarter reverses
  • 5 envelopes
  • 50 State Quarters® Program State Information sheets


  • Make 5 copies of the 2002 quarter reverses using the reproducible coin sheet on page 43, and cut out the quarters (25 coins).
  • Place one “coin” from each state into an envelope (5 envelopes in all).
  • Create story prompts on separate slips of paper and add one prompt to each envelope.
  • Gather and make copies of the 50 State Quarters® Program State Information sheets (on pages 40 and 41).

Worksheets and Files

Lesson plan, worksheet(s), and rubric (if any) at

  1. Divide the class into five groups. Explain that each group will be working together to write a story.
  2. Instruct the students in each group to number themselves from one to five. (If groups are larger or smaller, adjust as necessary.)
  3. To each group, give one envelope containing a copy of the five 2002 quarter reverses and copies of the related 50 State Quarters® Program State Information sheets. The envelope will also contain a piece of paper with a story prompt, such as “It all happened one day after school…” or “I couldn’t believe my eyes when….”
  4. Have student number one pick a 2002 state quarter reverse from the envelope. The others should continue to pass the envelope around until each of the five students has picked out a state quarter reverse.
  5. Have one student read the story prompt to the rest of the group.
  6. Model the following process, and then instruct the students to take turns, in the same order as before. During each student’s turn, he or she will add to the group’s story, incorporating into their section a symbol, feature, or fact about the state on the coin that student selected.
  7. While one student is dictating part of the story, the student to the right will record the words on a sheet of paper as they are spoken. The paper is passed around the circle until the story is complete.
  8. When all five images have been incorporated and the final story is decided upon, the group members will edit it for spelling, capitalization, punctuation, and grammar.
  9. Have students from each group share their group story with the class!

Differentiated Learning Options

If personal word processors are available, ask students to type their part of the story.


  • Have students make their own crossword puzzle based on the story that their group created.
  • Have students employ a variety of other literary styles, including plays, raps, songs, or poems. Students could perform or publish their work with illustrations.

Use the worksheets and class participation to assess whether the students have met the lesson objectives.

There are no related resources for this lesson plan.

This lesson plan is not associated with any Common Core Standards.

This lesson plan is not associated with any National Standards.