The Great Gatsby Chapter 5 Symbolism Stations or Group Work

Grade Levels
9th - 12th, Higher Education, Adult Education, Homeschool
Formats Included
  • PDF
9 pages
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Scaffold your students' understanding of symbolism throughout F. Scott Fitzgerald's American classic, The Great Gatsby with these stations strategically designed to guide students' understanding of the classic green light symbol.

In the past, I've told students to "stay tuned" when the green light was mentioned, and we have just analyzed the symbolism at the end of the novel. I've found that scaffolding the symbol throughout the novel prevents students from oversimplifying it at the end, and it helps to highlight Fitzgerald's purpose behind the elusive green light.

To tackle symbolism earlier on, I created these scaffolded "stations," a series of purposeful excerpts and questions designed to lead students in the right direction to understand what the green light represents and how this symbolism begins to change in Chapter 5. Each excerpt contains a key section of Chapter 5 and a litany of questions designed to prompt students' thinking. (I tell the students they do NOT have to answer EVERY single question--they are there to guide their thinking process.) I facilitate these 5 stations as "discussion stations," and I circulate around the room to ensure each group is on task. I tell them their ultimate goal is to be able to explain the green light and how its symbolism changes in Chapter 5, and we do this as an exit ticket. This works well for me, because students are more comfortable discussing in small groups, and I get bored with whole-class discussions.

If you are uncomfortable with "discussion stations," you may opt to have students record key points of their discussion for accountability. Either way, the goal of this entire activity is for students to understand the green light and how it changes.

You could also easily do this as a group jigsaw, assigning the less complex stations to lower groups. (Station 1 = Least Complex; Station 5 = Most Complex)

Included in this 9-page PDF resource:
-5 Stations
-1 Stations Recording Sheet
-1 VERY THOROUGH Answer Key, to help you out :)

Check out my MEGA Great Gatsby bundle that contains EVERYTHING (Pre-Reading Activities, Chapter Activities, Multiple Choice Quizzes, and Vocabulary in Context) here!
Total Pages
9 pages
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
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