In this lesson, high school students look critically at the literary work "The Pit and the Pendulum" by Edgar Allan Poe and its 1961 film interpretation. They use prediction strategies to form and refine their opinions about the story line progression in each work. They read the short story, screen the film, discuss reactions to both works, and plan and write a persuasive essay analyzing the validity of the film interpretation. This lesson is ideally suited for students who have experience with persuasive writing, and it can be adapted to work with any literature-film pairing.
This is a close reading guide for use with Elie Wiesel's Night. It can be paired with the characterization essay prompt and graphic organizer, which can also be found in this database.
Students will create a visual character map examining connections between characters and developing inferences about character motivation in Shakespeare's . The resource contains links to the Folger edition of as well as the handout on Constructing Character Connections.
The resource is a full interview (approximately 17 minutes) with the author of Farewell to Manzanar, Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston. She discusses civil rights violations regarding the internment of Japanese Americans in camps in the western U.S. during WWII.
Students watch this author interview to supplement knowledge learned during the reading of the author's book. They will glean additional information about the time period, the history, the events, as well as the feelings of the author during the events of the book and after writing the book as she is now in the interview.
What is scary, and why does it fascinate us? How do writers and storytellers scare us? This lesson plan invites students to answer these questions by exploring their own scary stories and scary short stories and books. The lesson culminates in a Fright Fair, where students share scary projects that they have created, including posters, multimedia projects, and creative writing.
In Module 10.1, students engage with literature and nonfiction texts and explore how complex characters develop through their interactions with each other, and how these interactions develop central ideas such as parental and communal expectations, self-perception and performance, and competition and learning from mistakes.
In this module, students read, discuss, and analyze nonfiction and dramatic texts, focusing on how the authors convey and develop central ideas concerning imbalance, disorder, tragedy, mortality, and fate.
In this module, students will read, discuss, and analyze contemporary and classic texts, focusing on how complex characters develop through interactions with one another and how authors structure text to accomplish that development. There will be a strong emphasis on reading closely and responding to text dependent questions, annotating text, and developing academic vocabulary in context.
In this module, students engage with literature and nonfiction texts that develop central ideas of guilt, obsession, and madness, among others. Building on work with evidence-based analysis and debate in Module 1, students will produce evidence-based claims to analyze the development of central ideas and text structure. Students will develop and strengthen their writing by revising and editing, and refine their speaking and listening skills through discussion-based assessments.
Students further develop close reading skills as they
examine Shakespeare’s Hamlet. The
tragedy of Hamlet develops many
central ideas, including revenge, mortality, madness, and the tension between
action and inaction. Students analyze the play through the close study of
Hamlet’s soliloquies and other key scenes to determine how Shakespeare’s
language and choices about how to structure the play impact character
development and central ideas. The showing of a filmed version of the play in
select lessons supplements students’ understanding of plot and background
points and encourages them to consider actors’ interpretations of the text.
This online tool gives teens the background information they need to take a closer look at a favorite epic hero (such as Simba or Batman) or to create a hero of their own using an interactive graphic organizer for the Hero's Journey.
Students read a work of realistic fiction about bullying and gain understanding through writing, Readers Theatre, and discussion.
Collaborative, self-directed learners use a variety of reading strategies to analyze, understand, and create personal enrichment, inquiry, and problem solve when engaging with Markus Zusak's historical fiction novel, The Book Thief. Students will learn about the backdrop of the novel in the Holocaust era of World War II through multi-faceted activities like documentaries, web quests, news articles, and first-hand accounts to better understand how the set of a novel affects the plot and character development. An additional layer of inquiry derives from a literary perspective: exploring character motivations and relationships, color symbolism, figurative language, point-of-view, and theme.
This is a great lesson to do either in the middle of the novel or as an introductory lesson. It is a great way for students to make connections to the content in the novel.
This is an activity exploring Shakespeare's use of sonnets in Romeo and Juliet. It explicitly explores the sonnet between Romeo and Juliet in the scene where they meet each other. Students will explore the structure of a Petrarchan sonnet and analyze whether the sonnet in Act 1 fulfills the requirements of the Petrarchan sonnet. This would be a part of a larger Romeo and Juliet unit.
Students develop close reading skills as they examine Lorraine Hansberry's A Raisin in the Sun. The play develops many thematic concepts such as the strength of family, issues with conflicting expectations, and stereotyping and prejudice. Students analyze the play through the close study of scenes and character development as well as the examination of symbolism, language choices, and structure. Students will also view a film version of the play to enhance understanding as well as analyze some poetry.
These New York Times lesson suggestions bring teaching of F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby into the 21st century. Teachers may choose from learner opportunities to analyze the historical and cultural icons of the 1920s and compare how America continues to be a society diverse in wealth distribution. Includes opportunities to create a gallery walk of 1920s history and culture, explore the modern film adaptation, and timeless themes, fictional characters, and author's style and craft in the novel.