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High School Book Lesson Plans

  1. Analyzing Huck Finn: A Cooperative Learning Lesson- As a group, discuss the following question. You will present the answers and quotes to the class. The answers will be helpful to you on the test at the end of the novel.
  2. Animal Farm: The Complete Project- Gathering Inoformation, Making Connections.
  3. Anne Frank intro- Although it is history, I wanted to "ease" my fragile 8th graders into the subject of the Holocaust.
  4. Another Perspective on Events in the Annex- Have students write a diary entry of at least 250 words reflecting on or describing one of the main events of the diary/play from the perspective of another person in hiding with Anne.
  5. Banned Book Debate - Banning books in schools is a hotly debated practice. In this activity, students investigate why books are banned and why some groups are against the idea. In a mock debate, students argue for and against banning books for an audience of their peers.
  6. Beowulf- This is a great team lesson (History & English). Using notes on the time period, discuss the function of the written word at the time that Beowulf was finally recorded.
  7. Blooming Tree- Students draw and cut a tree out of the construction paper. The tree should have many branches and be large.
  8. Chaucer- After reading and discussing Chaucer's use of direct and indirect characterization in "The Prologue" to The Canterbury Tales, discuss the professions today that might be included by someone who was part of a group of travelers stranded or together for a long period of time.
  9. "Dan the Flying Man"- Teach the class to fold paper airplanes. Take them outside and fly them.
  10. Death of a Salesman - Biff - This is the first in a group of lessons that examine Biff's character, primarily in terms of ethics.
  11. Death of a Salesman Confrontation - The purpose of this lesson is to look at how Biff has changed, and how questioning the unethical behavior he has been taught has brought about that change.
  12. Death of a Salesman - Ethics - This is the third lesson in a series of lesson that examines Biff's character in terms of ethics.
  13. Death of a Salesman - Explore Success - In this lesson the students examine the influences of Ben and Charley as business role models for Willy.
  14. Death of a Salesman - Importance of Salesmen - This lesson consists of a look at the profession of the salesman.
  15. Death of a Salesman - Nature of Salesmen - Students will continue their examination of the sales profession, and its connection with the American dream.
  16. Differences Between Fiction and Non-Fiction In the Library- Talk to the students about what they know about kangaroos. Write these facts inside the outline of the Kangaroo. Then ask children to use their imaginations and imagine they would have a pet kangaroo.
  17. Elements of a story- Following the lesson on the elements of the story, grade three students will be able to identify, list, recite, recognize, and verbally explain each of the elements of a story with 100% accuracy.
  18. Emersonian Jelly Beans- I hand out a jelly bean to all the students, and ask them to write in their journals for 5 minutes how a jelly bean is like an idea.
  19. Exploring the Sonnet- The student will increase knowledge of and analyze the elements of the sonnet form. (e.g., rhyme scheme, meter, content)
  20. Final project for unit on Hansberry's "A Raisin in the Sun"
  21. Hamlet- The unit affords practice in analyzing and discussing major characters in a written composition.
  22. Interpreting quotes in Romeo and Juliet- As a review of an act or even of the whole play, copy certain major quotes from the play on a transparency or on the board and put blanks in them.
  23. Introduction to "Julius Caesar"- To get my students prepared for the political ideas and basic plot in "Julius Caesar," I discuss with my students the American form of government, including our freedoms according to the Constituion.
  24. Introduction to American Romanticism- The difference between the Age of Reason and the Age of Romance.
  25. Introduction to Lord of the Flies- A great intro!
  26. Introuducing Huckleberry Finn- Let them write their own monologue, scenario, etc. of appropriate school satire.
  27. Julius Caesar- Understanding the play, the politics and the supersitions.
  28. Life Size Characters- Students will focus on a character's appearance and represent them in a life size (or almost life size) picture of the character.
  29. Literature- Federigo's Falcon - Students will gain understanding of how irony is used in the story.
  30. Lord of the Flies Introduction- We end up having a very good discussion about peer pressure and "why good people do bad things."
  31. Lord of the Flies: Law and Order- Writing a legal "script".
  32. Novel challenge- Appreciating literature.
  33. Of Mice and Men- Encourages quick thinking skills.
  34. Our Town- "Our Town" is all about what is most important in life, the little things in life.
  35. Persona- Creating a literary persona.
  36. Romeo and Juliet Newspaper- Creating a newspaper based on reading a play.
  37. Short Stories and Sitcoms- Comparing literature to modern day fascinations like the TV will hopefully bring the topic home to students.
  38. Short Story Framework- From this you give them ideas to start them off and get them writing their intros. They need to think about character, relationship, and setting, and must try to show rather than tell, to reveal the above through dialogue and action.
  39. Short Story Motivator- I've found that my students are motivated more through visual learning than the typical lecturing and reading a short story aloud.
  40. Sonnets- This lesson introduces students to the sonnet form and contrasts it with the modern poetry that they are used to reading.
  41. "Sonnets from Hester"- Analysis of characters.
  42. Story Boards- Understanding sequence and main events in a story.
  43. Story Wheels- Story Wheel is a reading activity designed to help students practice sequencing skills, summarizing a novel, visualizing story elements, and recognizing story structure.
  44. Symbolism and Aphorisms- Symbolism and words to live by; imaginative creation and application of knowledge of literary symbol.
  45. Symbolism in Lord of the Flies- Students complete a graphic organizer, finding the references indicated by the given page numbers.
  46. "The Man Who Was Almost A Man" - Students will make connections between the events and social attitudes of the time period, its influences on the author and the author's work.
  47. The Tragedy of Death of a Salesman - Prior to the reading the essay, and responding, the students will view the 1966 television production, with Lee J. Cobb playing Willy Loman.
  48. The Raven and Gothic Literature - The learner will interpret and evaluate representative texts to deepen understanding of literature of the United States .
  49. The Scarlet Letter - The student will read the novel and gather various data, facts and ideas about the time of the puritans
  50. The Victorian Era & Dickens - This lesson's purpose is to introduce the major characteristics of Victorian society in England before reading Charles Dickens's Great Expectations.
  51. The Birds: exploring story and film- Compare the end of the story to the end of the film: again, what effect does this kind of suspense have on the viewer?
  52. The Crucible- It is a three day lesson.
  53. To Be or Not to Be - Students should come away from the lesson understanding the meaning of the soliloquy as well as its significance within the play.
  54. To Kill a Mockingbird - Debating the Tom Robinson Case - Lesson affords the students the opportunity to practice their skills of persuasion, by debating whether Atticus should defend Tom Robinson.
  55. To Kill a Mockingbird - Real Courage - This lesson provides the students a further opportunity to observe the kind of parent that Atticus proves to be.
  56. To Kill a Mockingbird - Standing Up for the Right - Students will explore Atticus's reasons for defending Tom Robinson.
  57. "The First Seven Years" Letter Writing- Ask students to write a short note to Feld from his daughter Miriam, discussing her own dreams and plans.
  58. "The Giving Tree"- Go over the moral of the story. As the story goes along, have children guess if the man is really happy.
  59. The Great Gatsby- A complete unit.
  60. The Odyssey- For the Odyssey I give my 9th graders a project. They are to plan their own 'odyssey".
  61. The Scarlet Letter: Projects- Design a model that replicates a scene from The Scarlet Letter. You model should include some miniature characters.
  62. Themes in "Romeo and Juliet"- Once we begin reading Romeo and Juliet in class I ask them to really start listening to their music and decide if any of the themes in their music reflect any of the themes in Romeo and Juliet.
  63. Using Superman to teach the epic hero in The Odyssey- After reading the Odyssey and discussing the characteristics of an epic and an epic hero, I have the students watch Superman, the movie.
  64. Venn diagrams with the Pain and The Great One- Using a Venn diagram, the student will understand the skill of comparing and contrasting.
  65. What a Character!- After reading a novel, students should have a thorough understanding of characters' personality. Since characterization is crucial to understanding fiction, it is necessary for the students to be able to analyze the characters.
  66. Year of Impossible Goodbyes- The student then must go around to classmates and ask questions to find out who he/she is. For example: "Am I a god or goddess?" "Do I have special powers?" "Am I a mortal?"
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