Finding Home: The House on Mango Street

Lesson 5 - Writing

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Describe the structure of the first and last paragraphs of “My Name” and use descriptive, figurative language in their own writing.

Readings and Materials

  • Book: The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros  pp. 10 – 11 — "My Name"

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Target Task


Writing Prompt

In The House on Mango Street, Sandra Cisneros introduces many aspects of her narrator, Esperanza, through the vignette, “My Name.”  In this task, you will write your own “My Name” vignette, in which you describe the literal and figurative meaning of your name in order to provide your reader a better sense of who you are as a person.

Your vignette must be at least five paragraphs and should:

  • Establish a clear narrator’s voice
  • Include at least one additional character
  • Use precise words and phrases
  • Use descriptive details
  • Use vivid sensory language
  • Provide a strong conclusion  
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  • Students may not know the “meaning” of their name or their name might not have a particular meaning. Some websites may provide meanings of different names, and you may wish to look these up in preparation for this lesson (to save time!). Tell students who do not know, or whose names do not have specific meanings, or who do not know why their parents chose their names that they have the awesome opportunity to make up what their names mean to them!

Enhanced lesson plan

Enhanced Lesson Plan

Get recommendations on pacing and lesson structure, as well as suggestions for meeting the needs of a range of learners. Download Sample

Common Core Standards

  • W.7.3 — Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, relevant descriptive details, and well-structured event sequences.

Spiral Standards