Lesson Plan Title : J.R.R Tolkien's The Hobbit
Age Range: Grade 9 through grade 12 (High School)
Rationale: J.R.R Tolkien's The Hobbit is a piece of historical significance. This story has impacted the science fiction and fantasy genre. Students need to be familiar with various genres and be able to appreciate them, even if it is appreciating what they have helped to create. This novel is the backbone of a genre and it is important to be familiar with it, even if it seems mild/boring compared to some of the books that are available now.
Class copies of J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit
Vocabulary for this lesson:
Hobbit: one of an imaginary people, a small variety of the human race, that gave themselves this name (meaning 'hole-dweller') but were called by others halflings, since they were half the height of normal men.
Porthole: a small window (usually circular) in the side of a boat or ship.
Discreetly: with discretion; prudently; with self-regarding prudence.
Throng: pressing or crowding of people; an act of thronging or crowding; crowded condition.
Flummoxed: to bring to confusion; to 'do for', cause to fail; to confound, bewilder, nonplus.
Introduction to the novel. Share a little bit about the background of the novel. The Hobbit is the backbone of science-fiction/fantasy genres of today. Without this story there would not be the fanciful stories that we have today. Also connect this to the 'Lord of the Rings' movies that students are most likely familiar with. For students who like watching films that are based off of novels let them know that this novel is being adapted into a live-action film version and that we might take some time to watch portions of the cartoon version from 1977. Explain to students the style that is used by Tolkien in his writing.
Start reading the story aloud. For this first day and until students are a little more used to reading this novel the teacher should read aloud. Stop to clarify the action of the story and answer any questions that arise during the reading.
Close the lesson by summarizing what the class read during the day. The students do not have homework for the next day but they are responsible to remember the content that was covered during this lesson.
Assessment: Students are informally assessed by their comprehension of the material. At this point in the novel there is not much that can be assessed, once we have known the characters long enough to see them change it will make more sense to assess student learning. Right now the most important thing is that students are able to understand what is going on in the reading.
Reflection and Revision: There are hardly any students who have read this novel previous to this unit which is really nice for me. I think their unfamiliarity with this material will make it easier to develop their skills at reading for foreshadowing and predicting what is going to happen as we progress through this novel.