Get students thinking critically and outside of the box with this lesson on the standard of comparing mediums! The film O Brother Where Art Thou? by the Coen Brothers is an amazingly clever film that is more based on Homer’s “The Odyssey” than many give it credit for. In fact, the Coen Brothers themselves claim to have never actually read Homer’s epic but the movie has too many parallels for that to be case. Therefore, with this lesson plan, students will get to draw connections, identify the parallels and then decide whether or not the Coen Brothers are being too humble!
This lesson includes the following:
*FIVE pages of graphic organizers for key scenes (The prophecy, Poseidon, the Lotus Eaters, Helios, the Sirens, Circe, Polyphemus, the children, the suitors, the katabasis, Poseidon ignoring the decree of Zeus, spouses reunited)
*Links (16 of them!) for each key scene of the film that connects to “The Odyssey”
*A graphic organizer for literary elements such as mood, tone, theme and motif
*THREE PowerPoint project options
ANSWER KEYS AND RUBRICS FOR EACH PROJECT ARE INCLUDED!
This comparing mediums lesson covers the following CCSS:
Key Ideas and Details:
Read closely to determine what the text says explicitly and to make logical inferences from it; cite specific textual evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions drawn from the text.
Determine central ideas or themes of a text and analyze their development; summarize the key supporting details and ideas.
Integration of Knowledge and Ideas:
Integrate and evaluate content presented in diverse media and formats, including visually and quantitatively, as well as in words.
Analyze how two or more texts address similar themes or topics in order to build knowledge or to compare the approaches the authors take
Text Types and Purposes:
Write informative/explanatory texts to examine and convey complex ideas and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content.
Production and Distribution of Writing:
Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing and to interact and collaborate with others.
Research to Build and Present Knowledge:
Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects based on focused questions, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.
Gather relevant information from multiple print and digital sources, assess the credibility and accuracy of each source, and integrate the information while avoiding plagiarism.
Draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.
Comprehension and Collaboration:
Integrate and evaluate information presented in diverse media and formats, including visually, quantitatively, and orally.
Presentation of Knowledge and Ideas:
Present information, findings, and supporting evidence such that listeners can follow the line of reasoning and the organization, development, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
Make strategic use of digital media and visual displays of data to express information and enhance understanding of presentations.
Adapt speech to a variety of contexts and communicative tasks, demonstrating command of formal English when indicated or appropriate.
Conventions of Standard English:
Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English grammar and usage when writing or speaking.
Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English capitalization, punctuation, and spelling when writing.
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Keywords: The Odyssey, O Brother Where Art Thou, comparing mediums, compare and contrast, comparison, Homer, epic poem, epic poetry, answer key, rubric, links, Coen Brothers, katabasis, parallels, Greek mythology, mythology, cyclops, sirens, Helios, Poseidon, Zeus, Circe, Polyphemus, differences, similarities, prophecy, youtube links, video clips, fun stuff.