Rebecca Newberger Goldstein’s recent Atlantic Monthly essay, “Making Athens Great Again,” will make a student not only appreciate the study of history but will make students think of the parallels and controversies associated with the Presidential Elections of 2016 in the United States. There is a link to the essay and a professional reading of the entire essay on Soundcloud.
There are many links to video and audio resources for analyzing the argument about the parallels about Ancient Greece and the corruption of democracy. There is a video studying the painting, “The Death of Socrates.” The resource features an original prompt based on responding to a Rebecca Newberger Goldstein quote about the parallels between Athens and America. Students will craft an argumentative thesis sentence for an argument that agrees, refutes, or qualifies points from the essay.
Also, there is a graphic organizer designed as a rhetorical triangle where students will look for appeals from an NPR article and story on the teaching of political science in the Trump Presidency. Instructions and strategies are included on how to teach a rhetorical précis, and hold an inner and outer Socratic Circle.
These lessons fit any Honors Literature class, Pre-AP, American Literature, AP English Language or Literature class to prepare students for AP English Language exams, Common Core extended response assessments, American Literature Course exams, the SAT and ACT essay and critical thinking activities. Now adaptable for ESOL classes.
The packet includes complete lessons, Common Core standards, essential and key questions. I have added an addendum that describes how to adapt the lessons for ELL students.
Tags: Close Reading, writing, Pre-AP, critical thinking, Ancient Greeks, Socrates, Pericles, Oligarchy, theme, ELL adaptable material, flipped classroom