Reading Comprehension

This collection of lessons and activities focuses on building language skills. Scaffolded graphic organizers help students at different skill levels to build their vocabulary inventory. Use these handouts as advance organizers or as resources to during the lesson.

Steinbeck's writing style is highly descriptive and peppered with realistic dialogue. Students can practice their own writing skills through emulating Steinbeck's descriptive style, experimenting with different types of dialogue, and by diving into the vocabulary and stylistic elements used by Steinbeck. 

Literary Terms

A rich resource to help build students' knowledge and understanding of the literary elements present in Travels with Charley. This guide includes a comprehensive list of literary terms, their definitions, and examples of their usage as found in the book.


This activity provides a list of terms (including slang) used in Travels with Charley as well as an interactive, student drive, "word wall" to help students understand the new vocabulary encountered in their readings.

Sentence Fluency - "Painting with Words"

To increase the level and complexity of students' writing, students can improve their sentence fluency by emulating the sentence structure of Steinbeck's Travels with Charleyand those of their classmates. This can work with all levels of student writing abilities. Essentially, students will learn to "paint" with words and create powerful sentences.

A Dialogue with Steinbeck

In this activity students will analyze the different styles Steinbeck used in writing dialogue and emulate one or more of those styles in the form of an interview or dialogue between themselves and Steinbeck. In their discussion “with” Steinbeck, students will express their thoughts on the recurring themes of Steinbeck’s journey “in search of America.”