Grade Levels: 3-5, 6-8, K-3

In the BrainPOP ELL movie, Old Dog, New Tricks (L2U1L5), Ben and Moby prepare Fighter for the local dog show. But can he perform when it’s show time? In this lesson plan, which is adaptable for grades K-8, students will use images and other media formats to retell, write, and perform in collaborative activities using the modal can.

Lesson Plan Common Core State Standards Alignments

Students will:

  1. Write captions for a storyboard of the movie, using the modal can.
  2. Use an image as a prompt to summarize the movie.
  3. Listen to a song, write their own words with a partner, and record or perform their versions.


Make copies of the Fighter Can Do Tricks Storyboard.

Lesson Procedure:

  1. Fighter Can Do Tricks! Students write captions for the Fighter Can Do Tricks Storyboard, using the modal can. They can find the captions by watching the movie again, or think of their own captions.
  2. The Dog Show. After viewing the movie, have students do a Quick Write using the image of Dog Show Picture Prompt as a prompt. You may choose for them to write a summary, or make up their own narratives. Alternatively, before watching the movie, use the prompt for students to predict what they think will happen.
  3. Anything You Can Do, I Can Do Better. "Anything You Can Do, I Can Do Better" by Irving Berlin, from Annie Get Your Gun, is a great song to review the modal can. There are many versions on the Internet. Go over the song with the students, so they understand the premise of the competition between a boy and a girl, and the meaning of the lyrics. Provide the prompt: Anything you can do, I can do better. I can do anything better than you.
    Discuss how the verb keeps changing, and brainstorm more examples. Finally, have the students work with a partner to write their own versions of the song. Students may want to record and/or perform their songs.