ALEX Lesson Plan


The Bombing of Hiroshima - Fact or Opinion

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  This lesson provided by:  
Author:Michele Eller
System: Eufaula City
School: Eufaula City Board Of Education
  General Lesson Information  
Lesson Plan ID: 29776


The Bombing of Hiroshima - Fact or Opinion


Students will read "A Noiseless Flash" from Hiroshima, written by John Hersey with a partner and record facts (objective reporting) and opinions (subjective reporting) as given in the reading selection.

 Associated Standards and Objectives 
Content Standard(s):
ELA2015 (11)
4. Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in the text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the impact of specific word choices on meaning and tone, including words with multiple meanings or language that is particularly fresh, engaging, or beautiful. (Include Shakespeare as well as other authors.) [RL.11-12.4]
ELA2015 (11)
5. Analyze how an author's choices concerning how to structure specific parts of a text (e.g., the choice of where to begin or end a story, the choice to provide a comedic or tragic resolution) contribute to its overall structure and meaning as well as its aesthetic impact. [RL.11-12.5]
ELA2015 (11)
6. Analyze a case in which grasping point of view requires distinguishing what is directly stated in a text from what is really meant (e.g., satire, sarcasm, irony, or understatement). [RL.11-12.6]
ELA2015 (11)
7. Analyze multiple interpretations of a story, drama, or poem (e.g., recorded or live production of a play or recorded novel or poetry), evaluating how each version interprets the source text. (Include at least one play by Shakespeare and one play by an American dramatist.) [RL.11-12.7]
ELA2015 (11)
8. Demonstrate knowledge of twentieth- and twenty-first-century foundational works of American literature, including how two or more texts from the same period treat similar themes or topics. [RL.11-12.9] (Alabama)
SS2010 (11) United States History II: The Industrial Revolution to the Present
9. Describe the significance of major battles, events, and consequences of World War II campaigns, including North Africa, Midway, Normandy, Okinawa, the Battle of the Bulge, Iwo Jima, and the Yalta and Potsdam Conferences. [A.1.b., A.1.c., A.1.d., A.1.e., A.1.g., A.1.i., A.1.k.]
  • Locating on a map or globe the major battles of World War II and the extent of the Allied and Axis territorial expansion
  • Describing military strategies of World War II, including blitzkrieg, island-hopping, and amphibious landings
  • Explaining reasons for and results of dropping atomic bombs on Japan
  • Explaining events and consequences of war crimes committed during World War II, including the Holocaust, the Bataan Death March, the Nuremberg Trials, the post-war Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and the Genocide Convention
  • Local/National Standards:


    Students read a wide range of literature from many periods in many genres to build an understanding of the many dimensions (e.g., philosophical, ethical, aesthetic) of human experience.

    Primary Learning Objective(s):

    Students will be able identify facts and opinions in the reading selection.

    Students will be able to analyze the use of point of view used in a contemporary reading selection.

    Students will be able to describe the effect of the bombing of Hiroshima from a survivor's perspective.

    Additional Learning Objective(s):

    Students will be able to comprehend the reading selection using HOT ROD (hand over text, retell on demand) with a partner.

     Preparation Information 

    Total Duration:

    31 to 60 Minutes

    Materials and Resources:

    "A Noiseless Flash" from Hiroshima, written by John Hersey Available from Google Books.

    Hiroshima Graphic Organizer (see attached form).

    Computer with Internet access, LCD projector, and overhead projector (teacher only).

    Optional - A Noiseless Flash - Hiroshima Quiz (see attached form).

    Technology Resources Needed:

    Computer with Internet access

    LCD Projector and/or Interactive Whiteboard

    Document Camera


    Students will need to have prior knowledge of the bombing of Pearl Harbor in order to understand why the United States bombed Hiroshima.  Students need also prior knowledge of the difference between fact and opinion.  A fact is a statement that can be proven true or false - Ex: I am President of the United States (FALSE).  An opinion is a statement that cannot be proven true or false - Ex: The president is unhappy with the current economic conditions. (See attached form for a review lesson on fact/opinion if needed).

    Students should also be familiar with the ARI reading strategy HOT ROD (Hand Over Text - Retell on Demand).

    Students should be previously placed in compatible partnerships.


    1) Teacher shows pictures of the destruction of Hiroshima (

    2) Ask students how they would feel if they woke up to find this destruction all around them and somehow miraculously they had survived.  Give students an opportunity to respond. 

    3) Tell students that they will be reading the actual account of six survivors from the bombing of Hiroshima.  Explain that reporters use both objective (facts) and subjective (opinions) reporting.  You may need to review the difference between fact and opinion.

    4) Students should open Chapter 1 of the book.  Explain that they will be reading the story with a partner recording the facts and opinions of the author, character descriptions, and their own personal reactions. 

    5) Hand-out the Hiroshima graphic organizer.  You should also display the blank organizer on either an overhead, document camera, or Interactive Whiteboard.

     6) Demonstrate HOT ROD by reading the first paragraph and having the students listen and summarize what you read.  Fill in information on graphic organizer as students direct.

    7) Students should partner with the person next to them (make sure that partners are compatible and are comfortable reading to each other).  Explain that one person will whisper read (the reader) the selection about the survivor while the other person listens (the listener) for details.  After the "reader" is finished reading the selection, the "listener" will share information discovered and add this to their charts.  This discussion will aid in reading comprehension.  The students will then switch roles in reading about the next survivor.  This pattern will continue until the entire story is read.  Remind students that the last column on the graphic organizer is for them to record their own personal reaction to each survivor's story.

    8) When students are finish with their graphic organizer, each partnership will share information with the class.  Add information to your graphic organizer and discuss discrepancies. 

    9) Opitional - Students will then take the quiz on A Noiseless Flash from Hiroshima (see attached form).

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    Assessment Strategies

    1) Informal - teacher observation (graphic organizer)

    2) Formal - attached quiz on Hiroshima (optional)


    Students may write their own news articles concerning the bombing of Hiroshima.


    Students may need to be partnered with a strong reader, teacher's aide, or special education teacher.

    Each area below is a direct link to general teaching strategies/classroom accommodations for students with identified learning and/or behavior problems such as: reading or math performance below grade level; test or classroom assignments/quizzes at a failing level; failure to complete assignments independently; difficulty with short-term memory, abstract concepts, staying on task, or following directions; poor peer interaction or temper tantrums, and other learning or behavior problems.

    Presentation of Material Environment
    Time Demands Materials
    Attention Using Groups and Peers
    Assisting the Reluctant Starter Dealing with Inappropriate Behavior
    Be sure to check the student's IEP for specific accommodations.