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ALEX Lesson Plans


Subject: English Language Arts (9), or English Language Arts (9)
Title: Romeo and Juliet "What if......?"
Description: Student groups will be assigned separate acts of Romeo and Juliet where they will read and interpret the original version; then, remake it using a modern spin but keeping the same basic plot.


Subject: English Language Arts (9 - 10), or English Language Arts (9 - 10), or Technology Education (9 - 12)
Title: Literary Elements in Literature
Description: This lesson is applicable to any story or novel in literature. The students will be introduced to twelve literary elements through a podcast. They will then be divided into small groups to complete activities involving story and literary elements.


Subject: Business, Management, and Administration (9 - 12), or English Language Arts (9), or English Language Arts (9), or Technology Education (9 - 12)
Title: Producing Poetic Podcasts (Hey, That's Alliteration!)
Description: In this culminating lesson for a poetry unit, students will create a video podcast that summarizes a specific poem, analyzes the poet's use of literary elements, and infers the meaning of the poem (theme). The podcast must use a talk show format to discuss the literary elements and theme. The talk show may feature the students or animated characters using xtranormal.com.


Subject: English Language Arts (9 - 11), or English Language Arts (9 - 11), or Technology Education (9 - 12)
Title: Digital Story Writing: Cultural Myths
Description: You are a folklorist observing the lives and cultures of different people. You want to tell the world about  their culture, beliefs, and values. You and a group of other folklorist are going to research the lives of a an ethnic group, and create a digital story about their lives, and present it to all the folklorist at the "Who are They?" convention.


Subject: Education and Training (9 - 12), or English Language Arts (9), or English Language Arts (9), or Human Services (9 - 12)
Title: College Bound: Moving Out!
Description: High school student's research preparing to leave home, for the workforce or college. This lesson has a financial aid component to determine financial needs for attending college. Students will learn to make informed decisions about renting a place to live and obtaining a credit card as they become more independent.


Subject: English Language Arts (9), or English Language Arts (9), or Technology Education (9 - 12)
Title: Poetry Slam
Description: Students will locate a poem of their choice from a designated website to interpret. Students will then search the Internet for performances of the poem they select. In addition to creating a written interpretation of the poem, including references to websites they visited to view other performances, students will perform the poem of their choice before a live audience. Prior to their performance, students will create posters using Glogster to advertise the slam. As audience members, students will evaluate the performance of their peers.


Subject: English Language Arts (9), or English Language Arts (9), or Technology Education (9 - 12)
Title: Novel Study - Independent Reading
Description: Students will choose a novel from a teacher-created reading list. After reading their choice novel, students will prepare a 1-1/2 to 2 minute multimedia presentation to "sell" other students on the novel. In addition, students will prepare a poster advertising their novel for display and a written summary of the novel that identifies various literary elements of the novel.


Subject: English Language Arts (9), or English Language Arts (9), or Technology Education (9 - 12)
Title: Everyman in Everyday Language
Description: To gain understanding of allegory and appreciate the changing nature of language, students will read, discuss, and rewrite the medieval morality play Everyman into common teenage language.


Subject: English Language Arts (9 - 10), or English Language Arts (9 - 10), or Technology Education (9 - 12)
Title: Analyzing the Poetry of Emily Dickinson
Description: Students examine ways in which life events of a poet influence the poetry written. After researching Emily Dickinson's biography, students analyze her poetry and present a collage depicting one poem. The lesson can be easily adapted to the study of many other poets.


Subject: English Language Arts (9 - 11), or English Language Arts (9 - 11), or Technology Education (9 - 12)
Title: To Kill a Mockingbird: Building Knowledge
Description: As a conclusion to a class study of Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird, students create models and pictures based on the novel's descriptions to illustrate the effect of setting on plot and character.


Subject: English Language Arts (9), or English Language Arts (9), or Technology Education (9 - 12)
Title: Alaska: The People and the Land
Description: Students will read the short story about Alaskan Native heritage, "Otoonah," as retold by Robert David San Souci. From the reading and interpretation of this native American story, students will study the indigenous people of Alaska and their association with the Alaskan environment.


Thinkfinity Lesson Plans


Subject: Arts,Language Arts
Title: Childhood Through the Looking-Glass      Add Bookmark
Description: This lesson from EDSITEment explores the vision of childhood created by Lewis Carroll in Alice in Wonderland. Students begin by looking at Carroll's photographs of the real Alice for whom Carroll imagined his story and compare the image of childhood that he captured on film with images of children in our culture. Then students read Alice in Wonderland with special attention to the illustrations that Carroll made for his book, and explore the relationship between words and pictures by creating an Alice illustration of their own. Next, for contrast, students compare Carroll's vision of childhood with that presented by the Romantic poet William Blake in his illuminated Songs of Innocence and Experience. Finally, students consider the interplay of image and text in their own favorite children's literature and how the vision of childhood presented there compares to their experiences as children. Several pieces of literature appropriate for use with this lesson are suggested.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Language Arts,Social Studies
Title: Families in Bondage      Add Bookmark
Description: This two-part lesson from EDSITEment draws on letters written by African Americans in slavery and by free blacks to loved ones still in bondage, singling out a few among the many slave experiences to offer students a glimpse into slavery and its effects on African American family life. In Part I, students examine the letters of Hannah Valentine, an enslaved woman who lived on a Virginia plantation. In Part II, students read letters from a fugitive slave to his still-enslaved wife and from a black Union soldier to his still-enslaved daughters, confronting directly the anguish of separation that was a constant factor in African American family life during slave times, when children and parents, husbands and wives, were routinely sold away from one another. Students explore the emotional terrain revealed in these letters by comparing the response to separation voiced by Valentine with that voiced by the Union soldier and the fugitive slave.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Mark Twain and American Humor      Add Bookmark
Description: In lesson, one of a multi-part unit from EDSITEment, students analyze the use of literary conventions and devices to develop character and point of view in Mark Twain's The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County. They investigate the purposes and significance of literary humor and examine Mark Twain's storytelling style in relation to that of other American humorists.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



Subject: Language Arts,Social Studies
Title: Perspectives on the Slave Narrative      Add Bookmark
Description: This lesson, from EDSITEment, introduces students to one of the most widely-read genres of 19th-century American literature and an important influence within the African American literary tradition even today. The lesson focuses on the Narrative of William W. Brown, An American Slave(1847), which, along with the Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass(1845), set the pattern for this genre and its combination of varied literary traditions and devices. Students learn about the slave narrative and its importance in the abolitionist movement, gain experience in working with the slave narrative as a resource for historical study, evaluate the slave narrative as a work of literature, examine the slave narrative in the context of political controversy as an argument for abolition, and explore themes of self-actualization and spiritual freedom within the slave narrative.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Tales of the Supernatural      Add Bookmark
Description: In this lesson, from EDSITEment, students explore the origins and development of gothic literature. The goals of this lesson are to explore the origins and development of a literary genre, to investigate how shared imaginative concerns link the members of a literary period, to examine the evolution of a literary tradition, and to compare works of literature from different eras.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



Subject: Arts,Language Arts
Title: 'You Kiss by the Book'': Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet      Add Bookmark
Description: This lesson, from EDSITEment, complements study of plot and characterization in Romeo and Juliet by focusing on Shakespeare's use of lyric forms and conventions to spotlight moments in the drama and thereby heighten the impact of the action on the stage. Students examine the first meeting between Romeo and Juliet as an enactment of figurative language in a context of competing poetic styles, explore the use of poetic forms to impart perspective in later episodes of the play, and gain experience in close reading and the interpretation of verse structure and imagery.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Japanese Poetry: Tanka? You're Welcome!      Add Bookmark
Description: This lesson, from EDSITEment, contains three activities which use the Japanese poetic form of the tanka as a prompt for students to reflect on the nature and purpose of different poetic rules and devices. The activities involve a close study of the conventions and thematic concerns of tanka poems, opportunities for students to compose their own poems, and detailed structural analysis of selected tanka.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



Subject: Language Arts
Title: I've Got the Literacy Blues      Add Bookmark
Description: Students will be singing the blues in this lesson in which they identify themes from '' The Gift of the Magi'' and write and present blues poetry based on those themes.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



Subject: Arts,Language Arts,Social Studies
Title: Folklore in Zora Neale Hurston's ''Their Eyes Were Watching God''      Add Bookmark
Description: Students explore the way African-American author Zora Neale Hurston makes use of closely observed black folk life in her novel Their Eyes Were Watching God. Students read the novel, research Hurston's own life and ethnography, listen to her WPA recordings of folksongs and folktales, and compare transcribed folk narrative texts with the novel itself.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



Subject: Language Arts,Philosophy,Social Studies
Title: Profiles in Courage: ''To Kill a Mockingbird'' and the Scottsboro Boys Trial       Add Bookmark
Description: In this lesson, one of a multi-part unit from EDSITEment, students study select court transcripts and other primary source material from the Scottsboro Boys Trial of 1933, in which two young white women wrongfully accused nine African-American youths of rape. Students then consider how an awareness of this historical event vivifies Tom Robinson's story in Harper Lee's To Kill A Mockingbird.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Listening to Poetry: Sounds of the Sonnet       Add Bookmark
Description: This lesson, from EDSITEment, introduces students to the formal terms used to describe sonnets. The central focus throughout is on learning to appreciate the sounds of poetry. By focusing on the sounds of poetry, the lesson seeks to demonstrate that there is an underlying sense of form or structure at work in language, whether we happen to know the names for the formal elements of poetry or not. Included in the lesson are seven sound experiments, designed to help students understand how form, meter, and rhythm all combine to shape our experience of poetry and the meanings we derive from it.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Teaching the Epic through Ghost Stories      Add Bookmark
Description: In this lesson, students connect to the oral tradition of epic storytellers by sharing their own oral tales of ghosts and goblins and monsters.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Varying Views of America      Add Bookmark
Description: Students work together to analyze three poems about America with varying points of view.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Short Story Fair: Responding to Short Stories in Multiple Media and Genres      Add Bookmark
Description: In this activity, students read short stories and create presentations in multiple media to share in a Short Story Fair. At the fair, students explore and respond to the displays.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



Subject: Language Arts,Social Studies
Title: Flannery O'Connor's ''A Good Man is Hard to Find'': Who's the Real Misfit?      Add Bookmark
Description: In this EDSITEment lesson, students explore and challenge dichotomies (such as black and white, good and evil, faith and doubt) while closely reading and analyzing Flannery O Connor's A Good Man is Hard to Find. In the course of studying this particular O Connor short story, students learn about the 1950s South, including evolving transportation in the U.S., the landmark Brown v. Board of Education Supreme Court case that helped divide the Old South from the New South, and the literary genre known as Southern Gothic, or Southern Grotesque.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Novel News: Broadcast Coverage of Character, Conflict, Resolution, and Setting      Add Bookmark
Description: This twist on readers theater has students prepare original news programs based on incidents in a recent reading, as they explore standard literary elements of character, conflict, resolution, and setting.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



Subject: Language Arts,Social Studies
Title: 'The Red Badge of Courage'': A New Kind of Realism      Add Bookmark
Description: In this lesson, from EDSITEment, students compare specific excerpts from Stephen Crane's The Red Badge of Courage to first-hand accounts of Civil War battles, in text and images. They also list elements of Crane's style that contribute to the novel's realism. To conclude, they create a first-person account that employs the basic stylistic characteristics of The Red Badge of Courage.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Analyzing Character in Hamlet through Epitaphs      Add Bookmark
Description: Students create epitaphs for characters from a tragedy, such as Hamlet.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Happily Ever After? Exploring Character, Conflict, and Plot in Dramatic Tragedy      Add Bookmark
Description: By exploring the decisions points in a tragedy, students consider how the plot of the story can change if the key characters make a different choice at the turning point.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Ghosts and Fear in Language Arts: Exploring the Ways Writers Scare Readers      Add Bookmark
Description: Students analyze scary stories to 'break the code'' of horror writing and use what they learn to write scary stories of their own.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



Subject: Foreign Languages,Language Arts,Social Studies
Title: Chinua Achebe's ''Things Fall Apart'': Oral and Literary Strategies      Add Bookmark
Description: This lesson, from EDSITEment, introduces students to African novelist Chinua Achebe's first novel, Things Fall Apart, and to strategies of close reading and textual analysis. Through this lesson, students learn about Nigerian culture and history and compare African oral storytelling traditions with European linguistic and literary forms.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Weaving the Multigenre Web      Add Bookmark
Description: Students analyze the elements of a novel in many different genres and then hyperlink these pieces together on student-constructed Websites.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



Subject: Language Arts,Social Studies
Title: Critical Ways of Seeing ''The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn'' in Context      Add Bookmark
Description: This lesson, from EDSITEment, asks students to combine Internet historical research with critical reading. They then produce several writing assignments exploring what readers see in Huckleberry Finn and why they see it that way.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



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