Huckleberry Finn Unit Outline

UbD Coverpage

Stage 1—Desired Results

Established Goals: (NYS Standards)

  • Standard 1 - Students will read, write, listen, and speak for information and understanding.
  • Standard 2 - Students will read, write, listen, and speak for literary response and expression.
  • Standard 3 - Students will read, write, listen, and speak for critical analysis and evaluation.
  • Standard 4 - Students will read, write, listen, and speak for social interaction.

Enduring Understandings:

Students will understand that…
  • That the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn exhibits an immoral era in American history.
  • That Huck Finn presents a metaphor for morality and social action, both juxtaposed and in tandem.
  • The nature of style, diction, and syntax in fiction.
  • The importance of imagery, symbolism, and irony in a novel
  • How to identify theme in a novel.
  • That identifying and thinking about a key quotation or symbol in a novel can help a reader extract greater import from the work.
  • A paper analyzing literature should follow a logical organization.

Essential Questions:

  • Why is New Historicism, as opposed to New Criticism, important in critiquing fictional novels?
  • Is Huck Finn a moral person?
  • Is the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn a racist novel?
  • How and why does censorship concern us?
  • How was poetry and prose affected by the Civil War?
  • How do poetic devices affect a novel?

Students will know…

  • The plot, characters, and themes of the novel.
  • The biography of Mark Twain.
  • The affects of Civil War on poetry and prose.
  • The importance of diction, tone, irony, and syntax in a novel.
  • The relation between a thesis, antithesis, and synthesis.
  • The affect of censorship.
  • The history of racism and its affect on the county today.

Students will be able to…

  • Apply critical analysis towards a novel.
  • Develop a reasonable hypothesis and defend it.
  • Develop an expository essay.
  • Explain irony.
  • Explain the importance of empathy in literature.
  • Compare and contrast various works by an author.
  • Properly edit a paper.
  • Work cohesively in groups
  • Work independently on a writing assignment.

Stage 2—Assessment Evidence

Performance Tasks: (Unit “end” product(s))

  • Students will notice certain themes constantly emerging during the course of the novel. Four of the main themes are freedom, religion, education, and nature. In groups students will complete a series of assignments, which leads towards a final multimedia group presentation relating to the theme, they have selected. There will be other writing assessments that provide research and lead-up to the final performance task.

Other Evidence:

  • Essay – Students will write an expository essay of Mark Twain.
  • Personal chronicle of the novel (journal) – distinctive to chosen theme.
  • Group Ppesentation related to a selected theme by the students.
  • Quizzes – Vocabulary, novel’s plot, grammatical, and poetic and literary devices.
  • Critical analysis of the novel – Students will develop and support a thesis.
  • Critical analysis of poetry related to the theme and era of the novel.

Stage 3—Learning Plan

Outline Key

WA= Writing Assessment; Blue=WA Assign Date; Red=WA Due Date; Green=Chapter Readings Due; RATA=Read aloud, Talk aloud, Think aloud; SR=Silent readings; RA=Read aloud; SLD=Student Led Discussion; PR=Paired Reading

1 Bum Profile

2 Twain’s Bio

3 Expository
WA #1.1

4 Banned and

5 Thesis,
& Synthesis
WA #1.1 WA #1.2

6The Irony of
(poetic devices)
WA #1.2 Due

7 The Notorious
Jumping Frog

8 Intro to Huck
Finn & Discuss
WA #2

9 Chp 1-3

10 Chp 4-7

11 Chp 8-11

12 Racism Found Poem

13 Poetry
Poem Critique
Found Poem Due

14 Chp 12-14

15 Chp 15-25
Poem Critique


17 Editing Exercise
WA #2 Rough
Draft Due

18 Group Theme
(Art Imitates Life)

19 Chp 26-31
WA #2 Due

20 Chp 32-39

21 Chp 40-43
New Historicism
vs. New Criticism

22 Character
WA #3

23 Unit

24 Group
Project Research
WA#3 Due

25 Group

26 Group Theme
WA#4 Due

27 Group Theme
WA#4 Due

28 Group Theme
WA#4 Due

29 Unit Exam
Journals Due

30 Unit Exam

Readings not completed during the assigned class are to be completed as homework.
The study guide and vocabulary guides for the aligned chapters, time permitting, may be started in class; otherwise they are expected to be completed before the start of the next class on the students’ time.

DAY 1 “Bum Profile Rap Activity”

  • Hook - Students will complete the Bum Profile Rap Activity individually.
    • Have students carefully read the “Bum Profile Rap Sheet” and ask students as they are reading to think about and develop a description of the person profiled on this description. Encourage students to share their descriptions. (Answers will vary.)
    • After students read the profile, have them complete the bottom of the worksheet, which asks them to make 3 predictions as to what will happen to this “bum” when he “grows up.” Give students a few minutes for this and encourage them to be creative and state why they think what they think.
    • Ask students to share their predictions. Be sure to ask them why they are making the decisions they are making to draw out discussions of their own biases and prejudices. (Answers will vary.)
    • Ask students what they think of when they think of a writer. Ask them to describe the kind of person they see. Encourage them to use vivid adjectives. Ask the students to draw the person they create on the board. (Answers will vary. Most likely, students will draw an intellectual with glasses, knock-knees, and a pencil.) Ask the students to vote on which drawing looks the most studious or like a writer.
    • Ask students for a show of hands as to who has ever heard of the author called Mark Twain. Tell them that this was Mark Twain's life, or rap sheet, before he became the most famous writer in American history. Explain to your students that they are about to learn about Samuel Clemens, or Mark Twain, the most famous writer in American history. Discuss how their description of their writer matches up with Twain and his life. Ask them what this means to their judgments of people and themselves.
    • Guide students to discussions of judging people on past behavior and on how they look and act. Encourage a discussion of acceptance of people that are different than us. Encourage them to discuss the diverse paths that life takes to success.
  • Students will fill in KWL worksheet on Mark Twain.
    • This will help students activate background knowledge on Mark Twain, allow them to develop higher level thinking questions they want to know so they can scaffold new knowledge, and allow them to monitor their progress as they later review their KWL sheets.
  • Exit slip – “What do you think the connection will be between today’s lesson (the hook at the beginning of the class) and the novel?”

Day 2 “Mark Twain’s Biography”

  • Hook – Students will watch a seven minute clip of an actor portraying Mark Twain, so they can develop a visual of the author they are about to read.
  • Students will use the Text-to-Text worksheet to take notes about Twains’ biography in preparation to write an expository essay for the subsequent lesson.
    • The students will focus on comparing and contrasting, on of the five core patterns of expository writing, which will help them as they begin to write their essays. This will happen through the teacher’s guided reading of Twain’s Biography.
    • The Text-to-Text will provide students with a graphic organizer about Twain. Thus students will be able to synthesis a vast amount of information about Twain. The synthesizing will also serve to demonstrate for students how they combine multiple thesis and antithesis for Class 5’s lesson plan.
  • Exit slip – “What do you hope to learn from this upcoming unit on Mark Twain?”

Day 3 “Expository Essays”

  • Explain an Expository Essay:
    • Essays that describe how to do something
    • Essays that analyze events, ideas, objects, or written works.
    • Essays that describe a process.
    • Essays that explain/describe a historical event.
  • Detail the steps to writing an Expository Essay:
    • Select a topic: Be sure the topic is narrow enough to make it manageable within the space of an essay.
    • Write a thesis sentence: Be sure the thesis statement (or sentence) expresses a controlling idea that is neither too broad nor too specific to be developed effectively.
    • Select a method of development: Check through all the methods (i.e. definition; example; compare and contrast; cause and effect; process analysis; classification) before you finally settle on the one which will best serve your thesis:
    • Organize the essay: Begin by listing the major divisions which the body paragraphs in your essay will discuss; then fill in the primary supports that each body paragraph of the essay will contain
    • Write topic sentences for the body paragraphs of the essay: For each body paragraph, furnish a topic sentence that directly relates to the thesis sentence
    • Write the body paragraphs of the essay: Each body paragraph should develop the primary support covered in that paragraph's topic sentence
    • Furnish a paragraph of introduction: An introductory paragraph should state the thesis of the essay, introduce the divisions in the body paragraphs of the essay, gain the interest of the reader
    • Write a paragraph of conclusion: Restate the thesis and divisions of the essay. Bring the essay to an appropriate and effective close. Avoid digressing into new issues
  • Demonstrate with ideas from the class some possible thesis statements, which could be used to write an expository essay about Mark Twain. Using the Role, Audience, Format, Topic (RAFT) worksheet students’ will write begin writing a two page expository essay about a particular aspect of Mark Twain’s life or literary career.
    • The RAFT sheet will help students in their writing by providing a method to critically and creatively connect content to events, people, and places from their reading. This will allow them to infer and predict from the novel, and then synthesize new information, which will allow them to scaffold their new knowledge into an authentic assessment via creative writing.
    • Refer to the writing assessment guide, Part 1 - Expository Essay: Twain’s Life (Individual Assessment) Writing an Expository Essay
    • Many people regard expository essay writing as detective work.
  • Expository essays must be completed by class 5 for the subsequent lesson on “Thesis, Antithesis, and Synthesis.”

Day 4 “Banned & Challenged Books”

  • Hook: Can you identify the books on this list that have been banned?
    • The teacher will provide a list of books that have all been banned at one point or another in the United States over the previous century. This is meant to challenge their perceptions of what gets banned and why.
  • What's the difference between a challenge and a banning?
    • A challenge is an attempt to remove or restrict materials, based upon the objections of a person or group. A banning is the removal of those materials. Challenges do not simply involve a person expressing a point of view; rather, they are an attempt to remove material from the curriculum or library, thereby restricting the access of others. Due to the commitment of librarians, teachers, parents, students and other concerned citizens, most challenges are unsuccessful and most materials are retained in the school curriculum or library collection.
  • Why are books challenged?
    • Books usually are challenged with the best intentions—to protect others, frequently children, from difficult ideas and information.
  • Terminology Associated with Challenges
    • In 1986, in response to inquiries from librarians facing book or material challenges for the first time, the following list of definitions is to clarify terminology associated with challenges:
    • Expression of Concern. An inquiry that has judgmental overtones.
    • Oral Complaint. An oral challenge to the presence and/or appropriateness of the material in question.
    • Written Complaint. A formal, written complaint filed with the institution (library, school, etc.), challenging the presence and/or appropriateness of specific material.
    • Public Attack. A publicly disseminated statement challenging the value of the material, presented to the media and/or others outside the institutional organization in order to gain public support for further action.
    • Censorship. A change in the access status of material, based on the content of the work and made by a governing authority or its representatives. Such changes include exclusion, restriction, removal, or age/grade level changes.
  • Top ten most frequently challenged books of 2002
    • 1) Harry Potter, by J.K. Rowling
      • Reasons: occult/Satanism and violence
    • 2) Alice Series, by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
      • Reasons: homosexuality, sexually explicit, and unsuited to age group
    • 3) The Chocolate War, by Robert Cormier
      • Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, and unsuited to age group
    • 4) I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, by Maya Angelou
      • Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group, violence
    • 5) Taming the Star Runner, by S.E. Hinton
      • Reason: offensive language
    • 6) Captain Underpants, by Dav Pilkey
      • Reasons: offensive language and unsuited to age group
    • 7) The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, by Mark Twain
      • Reason: offensive language
    • 8) Bridge to Terabithia, by Katherine Paterson
      • Reasons: occult/Satanism, offensive language, and violence
    • 9) Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry, by Mildred D. Taylor
      • Reason: offensive language
    • 10) Julie of the Wolves, by Jean Craighead George
      • Reasons: unsuited to age group and violence
  • Using the Generating Interactions between Schemata and Texts (GIST) handout, students will explore John Stuart Mill’s quote on censorship.
    • This will help the students write their summaries of a complex issue and statement in a concise and organized manner.
    • The intent of the exercise is to illustrate that censorship can be subtle, almost imperceptible, as well as blatant and overt, but, nonetheless, harmful. As Mill wrote in On Liberty:
      • “If all mankind minus one, were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person, than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind. Were an opinion a personal possession of no value except to the owner; if to be obstructed in the enjoyment of it were simply a private injury, it would make some difference whether the injury was inflicted only on a few persons or on many. But the peculiar evil of silencing the expression of an opinion is, that it is robbing the human race; posterity as well as the existing generation; those who dissent from the opinion, still more than those who hold it. If the opinion is right, they are deprived of the opportunity of exchanging error for truth: if wrong, they lose, what is almost as great a benefit, the clearer perception and livelier impression of truth, produced by its collision with error.”
  • If there is additional time the students can explore additional Web sites that discuss censored books.
  • Exit slip: "Why is it that you think people do not want you to read a book?"

Day 5 “Thesis, Antithesis, and Synthesis”

  • Hook – Students will be asked to select from a list of statements on the board which statements are thesis statements and which ones are not.
    • This will be based on presenting a thesis, antithesis, and synthesis from a single theme.
    • The teacher will break down the terms to better define their meaning (i.e. anti=against/counter; thesis=statement of belief; therefore antithesis= a statement of belief in counter to another statement of belief.)
    • A thesis can be seen as a single idea. The idea contains a form of incompleteness that gives rise to the antithesis, a conflicting idea. A third point of view, a synthesis, arises from this conflict. It overcomes the conflict by reconciling the truths contained in the thesis and antithesis at a higher level. The synthesis is a new thesis. It generates a new antithesis, and the process continues until truth is arrived at.
  • A few students will read aloud their thesis statements from their expository essays about Mark Twain from class 3. The teacher will then break the students into groups that consist of contrary thesis statements. Students will then reconstruct their essays into a new essay using the superlative elements.
    • The purpose of this exercise is that as students develop a thesis, antithesis, and synthesis and then characterize how these items are part of a sole theme they will understand the method of scaffolding new knowledge. It is important in the field of criticism or learning to develop a thesis (i.e. an idea); however, students must also be able to listen to other peoples’ thesis, which may counter their own (i.e. antithesis), and then combine these dual or possible simpatico thesis and then develop a new thesis, (i.e. synthesis).
    • Thesis, Antithesis, and Synthesis – The thesis, antithesis, synthesis triad is used to convey the conclusion of a philosophical dialectic. It is often cataloged as a thesis, an intellectual proposition; an antithesis, the negation of the thesis, a reaction to the proposition; and a synthesis, a combination that solves the conflict between the thesis and antithesis by reconciling their common truths, and forming a new proposition.
  • Exit Slip – Students will be given a thesis statement and an antithesis statement and then be asked: “Construct a synthesis statement from the presented thesis and antithesis.” This is meant to demonstrate for the teacher their grasp of the lesson concept.

Day 6 “The Irony of Morality” (Please refer to PLE #1)

  • Hook: The class will identify the purpose of Twain’s NOTICE at the beginning of the book. By asking the reader not to look for a motive, moral, and plot, Twain was making sure that the reader would do the opposite.
  • Students will then complete the Anticipation Discussion Guide for Huck Finn.
    • Although the students will be unaware of many of the themes that the questions ask the reader to think about, the guide will help them to keep an eye for these themes when they are reading.
    • Use the PowerPoint slides on “The Irony of Morality” to review the concepts in the Anticipation Discussion Guide.
  • Handout the sheet that explains the poetic devices and literary terms presented in the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and discuss with the class how they will impact the novel.
  • Students will use Concept of Definition sheets to create a graphic organizer of literary terms.
    • Form; Structure; Plot - The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn consists of 43 chapters and is told in the first person with Huck Finn telling the story. The book divides into three sections. The first section has Huck living his Miss Watson and her sister in civilization. During the second section, Huck travels down the river with Jim. In the last section, Huck returns to civilization and lives with Tom in Uncle Silas’ farm. An organizational object in the book is the river, which serves as a timeline for the book.
    • Point of view - Huckleberry Finn is written in the first person with Huck narrating. It is in the past tense as a recent perspective.
    • Tone - Twain’s tone in the story gives a humorous and informal mood but in much of the observations he makes on society, he is often critical.
    • Character - Twain’s characters are fairly complex and believable for the time the book was written. They are given feelings and emotions and have a measure of dimension. However, at times they seem to be less characters and more just a means to convey some of Twain’s ideas. This can be used to later explained symbolism.
    • Setting - Huckleberry Finn takes place along a stretch of the Mississippi River in the antebellum South.
    • Theme – Nature, religion, freedom, education, superstition, et al.
    • Style - Twain’s style is simple and conveys his ideas in a boyish mood. The book is somewhat of an irony in itself because of this style.
    • Diction - Twain tells the story through Huck Finn and his diction is typical of the southern speech of a young boy during that time and area. The diction is very informal.
    • Syntax - Twain’s syntax is simple and informal often breaking laws of grammar to do so. Huck’s narration is like normal speech so it is sometimes in fragments and incomplete sentences, but always simple
    • Imagery - Twain uses much imagery to create a certain mood in his story. The main image is that of the Mississippi River. The river is described as wild and free flowing, typifying the type of life Huck wants to live.
    • Symbolism - A symbol Twain uses throughout the book is that of the river. It symbolizes freedom, independence, and life in the wild.
    • Figurative language - Twain does not use much figurative language in this novel since he is limited by the use of Huck as the narrator.
    • Irony - Twain uses a lot of irony in this book to give it a little humor.
  • Collect Writing Assessment 1.1 - Expository Essay.
  • Collect Collaborative Writing Assessment 1.2 - Thesis, antithesis, and Synthesis.

Day 7 “How a Jumping Frog Turned a Bum into a Legend: Mark Twain and The Notorious Jumping Frog of Calaveras County ”

  • When the Jumping Frog was published, America almost seemed to be two countries. Easterners were educated, cultivated, and civilized. Westerners were illiterate, resourceful, and uncivilized. Both parties often held each other in contempt.
    • Twain’s ability to make fun of all corners of America allows him to create an all-encompassing portrait of America at that time; a country where both Easterners and Westerners were gullible as well as crafty and intelligent.
  • Listen to the “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County” (length = 16 minutes). While the class is listening to the story have them complete the Event Map Worksheet.
  • Students will break into groups and determine the theme, tone, plot, protagonist, antagonist, irony, form, structure, style, diction, and syntax of the story. The class will then discuss as a whole.
  • Distribute Mark Twain’s Curriculum Vitae.

Day 8 Introduction to Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.

  • Hook - On the front board write," Hello. How are you today?” and have students read the phrase.
    • Explain that they have no struggles reading the phrase because it is written in formal English. This is a common greeting one could read in a book. Introduce to the class however that there are many different ways to say the same salutation in the same language all over the world. People can say the same thing in different ways. (e.g. USA=hello/goodbye vs. UK=’allo/cheerio).
    • Have students pair and share as many different ways of saying the same phrase in different ways. See if they can spell out the different dialects.
    • Students will share and read examples. If some students have trouble reading the examples note that this problem can be overcome by thinking as you read. What does this word sound like? What does the speaker probably mean?
    • Explain that there are hundreds of dialects in the English language. This can be used to explain the varied dialects in Huckleberry Finn.
  • Distribute and explain the procedures for the Study Guide and Vocabulary Guide.
    • Students will read the study guide questions prior to reading the aligned chapters to alert students to crucial events and ideas, aid reading comprehension, alert the teacher to students’ strengths and needs, and assure a level of activity and involvement. Following the chapter readings students will review their questions and answers and keep their study guides as a study guide for a unit test.
    • The students will follow the same method for vocabulary, which is related to the aligned chapters. The vocabulary guide is also handed out and completed before reading so students can use clues in the sentence pooled with prior knowledge, and write what they think the words mean.
  • The class will go over the parameters and goals of the Group Theme Projects and other writing assignments. Please to refer to the Writing Assessment guide for further clarification.
  • Discuss Journal Assessment: this is to be used as resource notes for their Group Theme Project as well as to be handed in for a grade. Please to refer to the Writing Assessment guide for further clarification.
  • The class will begin the study guide and vocabulary for chapters 1-3 with the teacher’s assistance to ensure understanding of what is expected in class and finish at home if needed.

Day 9 “Chapters 1-3 - Read aloud, Talk aloud, Think aloud”

  • Admit slip - Freedom means different things to different people. What does it mean to you?
  • The purpose of the Read aloud, Talk aloud, Think aloud is to allow students get a feel for the language, diction, syntax, tone, and other elements of the novel, build content knowledge, model fluency, build vocabulary, model how to use attributes found in good writing to share a message with the reader, listen to teacher’s model, practice strategy with teacher support, and explain how they apply the strategy when reading.

Day 10 “Chapters 4-7 - Read aloud, Talk aloud, Think aloud”

  • Admit Slip – What was your first impression of Huck? Why?
  • Students will take chapter quiz and review the study guide questions from chapters 1-3. This allows the teacher opportunity to assess students’ comprehension and note any concerns, which need to be addressed.
  • The class will begin the study guide and vocabulary for chapters 4-7 as the teacher and students then take turns reading the aligned chapters.
  • Students will complete a Read, Encode, Annotate, Ponder (REAP) worksheet for the readings.
    • The REAP sheet will help students develop a strategy for understanding the novel. Students will by process of competing the sheet internalize the knowledge in the novel as they think about ways to represent the main ideas and author’s message into their own words.
    • This promotes higher level thinking via analysis and synthesis of reading.

Day 11 “Chapters 8-11 - Read Aloud”

  • Admit Slip – Does Jim seem like a real person to you? Why?
  • Students will go take chapter quiz and review the study guide questions from chapters 4-7.
  • The purpose of the Read Aloud allows listeners to:
    • Build listening and comprehension skills through discussion during and after reading.
    • Increase their vocabulary foundation by hearing words in context.
    • Improve their memory and language skills as they hear a variety of writing styles and paraphrase their understanding.
  • The class will begin the study guide and vocabulary for chapters 8-11 as the students take turns reading the aligned chapters.

Day 12 “Racism”

  • Hook - The class will complete an anticipation vocabulary sheet for the sociology terms to see what they think they know about prejudices.
  • The class will discuss the Sociology terms and definitions:
    • Socialization – the process of developing values, attitudes, and beliefs.
    • Power - authoritative allocation of values
    • Worldview - broad collection of images, beliefs, attitudes that a people and culture hold
    • Ideology - shared set of beliefs, attitudes, and values which individuals, groups, organizations, and nations hold
    • Ethnocentrism - an ethnic group or racial aggregate viewing its ethnicity/race as superior to that of others
    • Racism - extreme pathological prejudice
    • Social Darwinism - post Civil War ideology that distorted Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution.
    • Nationalism – patriotism to an often-negative extreme.
    • Zero sum conflict - destructive form of human conflict.
  • Essay – “The Religiosity of Racism…God’s Will or Sacrilegious Justification?”
    • Discussion question: Should such cruelty be hidden from history books and literature? How can such cruelty be reconciled with the fervent religion of so many poets?
  • Students will begin the found poetry exercise from the “The Religiosity of Racism…” essay.

Day 13 “Poetry”

  • Admit Slip -Students will hand in their Found Poetry Exercise
  • Discuss the poems in the “The Religiosity of Racism…” essay. (All poems can be found in Words for the Hour)
    • Students will use Poetry Response Checklist as the teacher reads the poems:
      • “The Southern Cross,” Ellen Key Blunt (56)
      • “Battle Hymn of the Republic.” Julia Ward Howe (75)
      • “Sambo’s Right to be Kilt” Charles Graham Halpine (138)
      • “Confederate Song of Freedom” Emily M. Washington (139)
    • Assign poetry critique assessment: Students must critique one or more poems read during the class. They should use the Poetry Response Checklist to perform this assessment.
  • Discuss the effect of the Civil War on literature and poetry.
  • For homework students are to read chapters 12-14 and complete the Text Highlighting worksheet for the following day’ lesson.

Day 14 “Student Led Discussion”

  • Students will go take chapter quiz and review the study guide questions from chapters 8-14.
  • The class will discuss the reading using the Text Highlighting worksheets they completed the previous night.
    • This offers an instructional approach for students to depend on themselves as opposed to the teacher for discussion. This occurs by having students develop a synthesis of their highlights.
    • Additionally, this allows them to create a graphic organizer of the chapters.

Day 15 “Chapters 15-25 - Read aloud, Talk aloud, Think aloud”

  • • Poem Critique Due
    • Students will discuss elements of their critiques with the class
  • The class will begin the study guide and vocabulary for chapters 15-18 as the teacher and students then take turns reading the aligned chapters.

Day 16 “Language Usage” (Please refer to PLE #2)

  • Hook - Students will examine Twain’s “Descriptive Writing”
    • This will allow them to see that colorful words and phrases do not mean it is well written.
    • Finding the right words is an art.
    • “Mark Twain on Writing” handout.
  • Students will complete the Language Usage worksheet in pairs.
  • There can be many different revisions of this passage depending on how much of the flavor of the passage you want to leave in or take out. One of the interesting aspects of doing this exercise is trying to decide which phrases should be used in “proper English” and which ones should not. Does “proper English” include colloquialisms? Some corrections are black and white: the subject and the verb have to agree, double negatives are unacceptable, and words must be spelled correctly. Things that break hard and fast rules of English are easy to spot. But, there are many gray areas in this passage. What is a run-on sentence? Exactly how should it be rewritten? What is a matter of style or meaning as opposed to correct usage? After students write their own revisions (individually or in small groups), discuss with them which things in the passage must be changed, which things probably should be changed, which things could be changed, and why.
  • Students will go take chapter quiz and review the study guide questions from chapters 15-18.

Day 17 “Editing”

  • Students must arrive with a rough draft on WA #2 for the day’s lesson.
  • Editing exercise.
    • Mark Twain quote: “I’m sorry this is so long, I didn’t have time to make it shorter" Students will learn that quantity does not equal quality.
    • Students will learn how to edit papers; they will use another groups WA #2 (Art Imitates Life) for this exercise.
    • The students will use the Online Writing Lab (OWL) at Purdue to explore the mechanics of editing. This will provide an excellent opportunity for the students to learn the Web site.
    • Students will explore all sections in class.
      • Where do I begin?
      • Finding Common Errors
      • Suggestions for Proofreading Your Paper
      • Revising for Cohesion
      • Steps for Revising Your Paper
  • The class will begin the study guide and vocabulary for chapters 19-25 as the teacher and students then take turns reading the aligned chapters.

Day 18 “Group Theme Project”

  • Students will be given research time in the library to work in their groups.

Day 19 “Chapters 26-31 - Paired reading”

  • Students will go take chapter quiz and review the study guide questions from chapters 19-25.
  • Students will complete Shared Reading worksheet for Huck’s dilemma in chapter 31.
    • This will allow students to juxtapose their choices against others students, whereas they can compare and contrast differing viewpoints, reactions, and understanding.
  • The teacher will be having terse student-teacher conferences to address any students or teacher suggestions or apprehensions.
  • Collect Writing Assessment #2 – Theme Composition.

Day 20 “Chapters 32-39 - Read aloud, Talk aloud, Think aloud”

  • Students will go take chapter quiz and review the study guide questions from chapters 26-31.
  • The class will begin the study guide and vocabulary for chapters 32-39 as the teacher and students then take turns reading the aligned chapters.

Day 21 “Chapters 40-43 - Read aloud, Talk aloud, Think aloud”

  • Students will go take chapter quiz and review the study guide questions from chapters 32-39.
  • The class will begin the study guide and vocabulary for chapters 40-43 as the teacher and students then take turns reading the aligned chapters.
  • Students will discuss the difference between New Historicism and New Criticism when applying critical analysis to a novel.
    • New Criticism – New Criticism is a form of literary criticism that dismisses authorial intent and ignores biographical and historical information about an author. Instead, literature is to be interpreted solely on the cohesiveness of the work. The author’s intention is invalid, as the writing itself transformed authorial intent, producing new meanings. According to New Criticism, the critic’s position is to evaluate the numerous characteristics of a text that produce ambiguity. Critics analyzed metaphor, simile, and other rhetorical tropes that resulted in stress and counter-stress, reconciling them to find the harmony in a work. Critics, via their purported expert analysis, tell readers how to interpret a text and what value is to be gained; thus, the critic became the interpreter through which literature can be appreciated. John Crowe Ransom named New Criticism in his book of the same name in 1941.
    • New Historicism – New Historicism is a theory applied that implies literature must be studied and interpreted within the context of both the history of the author and the history of the critic. The theory arose in the 1980s with Stephen Greenblatt as its main advocate. Unlike previous historical criticism, which limited itself to demonstrating how poetry or prose was reflective of its time, New Historicism evaluates how the work is influenced by the historical era in which it was produced. It also examines the social sphere in which the author moved, the psychological background of the author, the books and theories that may have influenced the author, and any other factors that influenced the work of art. One of its chief underpinnings is that all work is biased.
  • Students will interpret how New Historicism is relevant when critically analyzing prose or poetry. This is especially critical when analyzing what James C. Scott refers to as the “hidden transcripts” of African-American history.
    • As the school of literary criticism New Historicism pertains, valuing the historical, regional, and biographical circumstances of a text and its author is critical in order to apply a contextual critical analysis. New Historicism is opposed to New Criticism, which urges the reader to disregard everything other than the text itself when applying critical analysis.

Day 22 “Character Writing Activity”

  • Students will use the “Three Elements of Characterization” worksheet.
    • Students will understand how characterization conveys traits, which are meant to reveal underpinnings in the plot via the author's intent to tell elements of the story through subtle character rather than merely telling the reader what to think.
      • Physical appearance - What does the character look like?
      • Actions, speech, and behavior - What does the character do? How does the character behave? What does the character say?
      • Interactions with others - How other characters in the story react to this character
      • Protagonist- The main character in a story. The protagonist experiences the conflict in the story. The protagonist does not have to be “good.”
      • Antagonist- The cause of the conflict. The antagonist doesn’t have to be a person.
      • Dialogue-The words a character uses in conversation and how they are used gives the reader insight into the character.
      • Stereotype- A character that is over simplified. Lacks originality or individuality.
  • Students will work on Writing Assessment #3 – Character Writing Activity.
    • Students will choose one character they think they are most like and explain. They will make a list of all the characters in the book and write down two or three of their most characteristic personality traits. Make a list of several of your own personality traits. Then decide which of the characters has personality traits closest to your own. They will write an introductory paragraph introducing the idea that they and the character have certain traits in common. In the body of the paper, one paragraph will be devoted to each trait. A concluding paragraph will determine just how much they and their character are comparable.

Day 23 “Unit Review Day”

  • Students will go take chapter quiz and review the study guide questions from chapters 40-43.
  • Students will complete the Unit Organizer worksheet.
    • This will help students break down the main concept, theme, or big idea of the unit.
    • It pushes higher level thinking and scaffolding by asking them how they would restate questions, determine how this knowledge and skills can be used presently, how it can be used in the future, how they will show the teacher the benchmark they have reached, and what strategies and resources they can use to assist them in the remaining assessments.

Day 24-25 “Group Theme Project Work”

  • The class will be given research time in the library or in the classroom to work on their groups’ theme projects.
  • Collect Writing Assessment #3 – Character Writing activity.

Day 26-28 “Group Theme Project Presentations”

  • Students will present their Theme projects.
  • Collect Group Writing Assessment #4 – Art Imitates Life.

Day 29 “Review”

  • The Teacher will lead a unit review for the Final Unit Assessment.
  • Students will turn in their journals.

Day 30 “Unit Test”

  • Students will take the Final Unit Assessment.