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Thank You for Downloading “The Black Death: An Introduction to the Great Plague.”
As a retired high school English and social studies teacher, I found that students are intrigued by subjects from the past, those that had a profound impact on the individual. One such subject, the Black Death, is mentioned in tales such as Defoe’s Journal of the Plague Years, Boccaccio’s The Decameron, Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, and Poe’s “The Mask of the Red Death.” As a result, students wish to understand more about this pandemic that swept across Europe and other parts of the world. Although topics such as the plague are mentioned in social studies texts, because of time constraints, the information provided is minimal. This resource is designed to ensure that students have an opportunity for a much richer experience with the classical, as well as contemporary, literature. In addition, it contains a mini-lesson and short assignment designed to address the following academic requirement.
Common Core Alignment
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.9-10.9A Analyze how an author draws on and transforms source material in a specific work.
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Additional Information of the Black Death
If this topic is of interest to your students, an additional resource, “The Black Death: An Ongoing Search for the Truth,” is available for purchase. Written in literary nonfiction, this product allows students to understand that the Black Death did more than bring death to millions. The pandemic, the third of its kind, also left a psychologically damaged population in its wake. By discussing other significant events of the era, those such as the Dancing Plague and the Flagellant Movement, this unusual peek into the historic past will intrigue your students. In addition, this reading passage identifies the role of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, the three forms the pathogen takes, and the status of the disease in today’s world.
No teacher preparation is required, and lessons are designed to be taught in fifteen-to forty-five minute time periods. The components included are as follows.
• anticipatory set
• 10th grade SAT and domain-specific vocabulary embedded within the reading
passage and with definitions provided
• comprehension quiz with answer key
• fill-in-the-blank vocabulary assignment with answer key
• five optional vocabulary review strategies including a word chart, games, and
crossword puzzle with answer key
• final vocabulary quiz with answer key
• mini-lesson and a short assignment in creative writing
• Common Core alignment
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