In this Common Core-aligned three-day mini-unit, students conduct a comparative analysis of "On Being Brought from Africa to America" by Phillis Wheatley and "The Middle Passage" by Olaudah Equiano.
Included in this resource: Detailed, three-day lesson plans, graphic organizers, essay prompt.
Common Core State Standards Addressed
• RL12.2: Determine two or more themes or central ideas of a text and analyze their development over the course of the text, including how they interact and build on one another to produce a complex account; provide an objective summary of the text.
• RL 12.4: 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.
• RSL12.1: Initiate and participate effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (partner, small-group, and teacher led) with diverse partners on grades 11-12 topics, texts, and issues, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly and persuasively.
Students will be able to:
1. Read closely and independently and understand and discuss theme and tone in difficult poems.
2. Make decisions about the tone, meaning, and possible problems presented by Wheatley’s “On Being Brought from Africa to America” & defend these decisions during class discussions. Students will support all claims with reasoning and evidence.
3. Through close reading students will notice differences in tone between Phillis Wheatley’s “On Being Brought from Africa to America” & “The Middle Passage” and differences in attitudes towards slavery and they will be able to identify possible reasons for these differences.; they will be able to discuss the significance of these differences with peers and teacher.
Common Core Shifts:
• Shift # 3 – Staircase of Complexity – Students read the central, grade-appropriate text around which instruction is centered. Teachers are patient and create more time and space and support in the curriculum for close reading.
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