Lesson Plan: Lord of the Flies

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1 StudySync Lesson Plan Lord of the Flies Objectives Time 1. Engage students in the story, characters and themes of an excerpt from William Golding s seminal dystopian novel Lord of the Flies, preparing them to discuss and write critical responses to the text. 2. Practice and reinforce the following Grades 9-10 ELA Common Core Standards for reading literature, writing, and speaking and listening:! READING: LITERATURE RL , 6-7, 9-10! WRITING W ! SPEAKING AND LISTENING SL minutes (with an additional 250 minutes of extension possibilities) Materials SyncTV Premium Lesson on William Golding s Lord of the Flies Overview After serving in the British Navy in World War II, William Golding returned to England and began his prolific career as an author. His first published novel, Lord of the Flies, was a critical and commercial success, though not upon its initial publication in Still, by the early 1960s, Lord of the Flies had been translated into dozens of different languages, as schools and universities were beginning to introduce the book as curriculum. This would not be without its share of controversy. Along with its critical and commercial success, Lord of the Flies is also one of the most frequently challenged and banned books of the 20 th century, thanks to its depiction of a group of young boys marooned on a deserted island who descend into violence and chaos. The excerpt presented in this StudySync Premium Lesson introduces us to the novel s principal characters as they decide who will be their leader. After reading, students will participate in class- and group-led discussions and write critical responses consistent with the ELA Common Core Standards for Grades 9 and 10. Page 1

2 Background (10 minutes) 1. Watch the Preview (SL ). As a group, watch the video preview of the premium lesson. After viewing, use the following questions to spur a discussion: a. Stranded on a deserted island, what are some of the challenges that these boys will face? Make a list of the wide range of difficulties and obstacles in this situation in addition to those mentioned in the preview. How would you respond to these challenges if you were in their shoes? b. No grown-ups, no rules and the freedom to do whatever you choose. Do you think this will be an ideal situation for these young boys, or will it turn into a nightmare? Explain your opinion using real-world examples. c. Why do the boys need need rules? Why must they obey them? If we don t follow rules are we, as Jack states, savages? Ponder these questions and discuss as a class. What importance do rules hold in any society? Extension (additional 60 minutes) d. Research (W and SL ). According to the preview, Lord of the Flies is an unsettling allegory of civilization and savagery. What is an allegory? Ask students to look up a proper definition of the literary device allegory. Each student should also provide an distinct example of allegory in effect. What are some other allegorical texts students have previously read? Share and discuss these as a class. e. List (SL and W.9-10.). Have each student draft a list of five rules that they consider important. The rules can be wide-ranging and diverse, so long as they fit the bill. Along with this list, students should provide an explanation (one or two sentences each) as to why they feel the rule to be important. Discuss these lists as a class. What are the common rules among the students? What are some of the more unusual ones? f. Present (SL ). To prepare for an excerpt about a group of boys marooned on a deserted island, ask each student in the class to compose a list of five things they would want to take with them to a deserted island. These can include albums, movies, types of food, treasured possessions, etc. Students should prepare a two- to three-minute presentation on their five deserted island possessions and present it to the class, incorporating video, audio, and images wherever applicable. Engaging the Text (120 minutes) 2. Read the Text (30 minutes) Page 2

3 a. Read and Annotate (RL , 6). Have students read and annotate the introduction and excerpt. If students are completing as a homework assignment, ask them to write any questions they have into the annotation tool these questions are visible to you after the students submit their writing assignments or beforehand if you use the Mimic function to access the students accounts. b. Discuss (SL , 3). Have students get into small groups or pairs and briefly discuss the questions and inferences they had while reading. As a class, discuss the following: What do you think will happen next? What challenges or difficulties will the boys face? Make a list of things you think will happen in the following chapters. Extension (additional 30 minutes) c. Listen and Discuss (SL ). As a class, listen to the audio reading of the text. Ask students to share how their understanding of the text changed after listening. What additional images came to mind? What words did the author use to develop the setting? d. Comprehend (RL , 6, 10). Have students complete the multiplechoice questions. Collect papers or discuss answers as a class. e. Illustrate (ELL). Ask students to draw any moment from the scenes in the excerpt. They should incorporate at least three details from the text into their drawings, noting the three passages they chose and where they are represented. 3. Watch SyncTV (30 minutes) a. Watch Either watch the SyncTV discussion as a class or ask students to watch it on their individual computers. b. Focus (SL and RL ). From 1:50-3:16, the SyncTV students discuss the pros of the boys situation as they are stranded on the island. Pay attention to the pros the SyncTV students share in their discussion, and ask the class to think of their own to add. c. Focus (SL and RL ). Now, watch from 4:34-5:25 as the SyncTV students address the cons. What are some of these cons they share? Once again, ask the class to think of their own additional cons to add. d. Focus (SL and RL ). Finally, from 7:02-7:55, the SyncTV students offer their suggestions for skills or qualities the boys will need in order to face the challenges ahead. Focus on the different words the SyncTV students offer, then vote on a winner. Page 3

4 e. Discuss (SL and RL , 6, 10). After watching the model discussion, have a conversation with the class about the ideas discussed in the SyncTV episode. What new thoughts do they have after hearing the students' discussion? Next, divide students into small groups (3-4 students). Move around the room monitoring groups as students follow the SyncTV episode as a model to discuss some of the following questions: i. What is your response to the prompt: is this a great opportunity, a nightmare, or something else? Why? What sorts of factors and choices will determine how this scenario plays out? Discuss. ii. What makes an effective leader? What makes a popular leader? Are these two qualities mutually exclusive? Finally, discuss the different leadership qualities the boys exhibit, based on the descriptions in the excerpt. Who would make the best leader of the group? iii. What does the mysterious conch shell symbolize? Why might it hold such strange power over the boys on the island? Can you think of a similar object or possession in real life that holds a similar sway? Why is this so? iv. Can you think of any other qualities to add to the SyncTV students suggestions for the boys on the island? Have the class brainstorm words/terms/ideas of their own. Discuss them as a class, explaining why the boys on the island will benefit from these qualities. v. Why do the boys on the island need rules? Why do they need leaders? Will rules and leaders be effective, or will they lead to fighting and chaos? What would happen if there were no rules in place? vi. The preview called Lord of the Flies an unsettling allegory of civilization. Now that you have read and discussed an excerpt from the text, how do you think this story might be allegorical? What could be the allegory at the heart of the text? Why? Extension (additional 60 minutes) f. Propose (W , 4, 9 and SL , 3-4). Now that students have read and discussed the ideas in this excerpt, split the class into three groups and have each group draft a proposal for how the class should govern themselves. Groups should be given a limited amount of time to draft these rules (10-12 minutes) and must work together on them, because the three proposals will be put to individual vote, and if the group doesn t adequately represent all of its members, they may choose to vote for another proposal. Page 4

5 g. Present (W , 9 and SL ). What qualities comprise a good leader? Have students research the qualities of leadership that can be found in the best leaders across history. Students should then choose an individual leader from history and prepare a three- to five-minute presentation on their chosen subject, incorporating video and audio wherever appropriate. 4. Think (10 minutes) a. Respond (W , 4). Ask students to read the Think questions, watch the corresponding video clips, and respond to the questions, either in class or for homework. 5. Write (50 minutes) a. Discuss (SL ). Read the prompt you have chosen for students, and then solicit questions regarding the prompt or the assignment expectations. Whichever prompt you have chosen, make sure you are clear about the assignment expectations and the rubric by which you and the other students will be evaluating them. b. Organize (RL and W , 5). Ask students to go back and annotate the text with the prompt in mind. They should be organizing their thoughts and the points they ll address in their writing as they make annotations. If you ve worked on outlining or other organizational tools for writing, this is a good place to apply them. c. Write (W , 4-6, 8-10). Have students go through the writing process of planning, revising, editing, and publishing their writing responses. d. Review (W ). Use the StudySync Review feature to have students complete one to two evaluations of their peers work based on your chosen review rubric. Have the students look at and reflect upon the peer evaluations of their own writing. What might you do differently in a revision? How might you strengthen the writing and the ideas? Extension (additional 100 minutes) e. Write (W , 4-6, 9-10). For homework, have students write an essay using one of the prompts you did not choose to do in class. Students should publish their responses online. f. Write (W , 9-10). For a fun creative writing assignment, have students write the chapter following this excerpt from Lord of the Flies. What will happen next? What will Ralph, Jack and Simon encounter on their exploration? What challenges will the group of boys face as the days and weeks pass? In at least 300 words, continue the action and introduce another twist or challenge for the boys to face. Page 5

6 g. Write (W , 4-6, 9-10). Team Ralph? Team Merridew? Team Someone Else? In an essay response of at least 300 words, select the boy who would make the best leader and explain the reasoning behind your decision. What will your selection offer the boys of the island that the others cannot? Page 6

7 SUPPLEMENTARY MATERIALS Key Vocabulary 1. matins (n.) A religious service at dawn in Christianity 2. precentor (n.) The choir director in a church service 3. furtive (adj.) Secretive, avoidant 4. arrogance (n.) The state of thinking or behaving as though you are better than others, in an insulting way 5. conch (n.) A seashell inside which a sea snail lives or lived 6. clamor (n.) A loud desire or demand for something from a group of people 7. grudgingly (adv.) Done with unwillingness or spite 8. mortification (n.) The state of embarrassment or humiliation 9. suffusion (n.) A spread of light or color 10. glamour (n.) A feeling of excitement or attractiveness that makes something special Reading Comprehension Questions Directions: Circle the best possible answer. If you don t know the meaning of a word, look it up! 1. (Line 1) Isn t there a ship, then? The character speaking at the beginning of the excerpt is. a. Piggy b. Ralph c. Jack d. Simon 2. (Line 2) Ralph spoke to his back. The underlined pronoun above refers to. a. Jack b. Piggy c. Roger d. Fatty 3. Jack Merridew is the head of. Page 7

8 a. the boys on the island b. a liturgical choir c. both a and b d. neither a nor b 4. Jack probably wants to be called Merridew because. a. he has always hated the name Jack b. Merridew sounds more official and formal c. he doesn t want anyone to know his real name d. all of the above 5. From the details in the excerpt we can infer that Piggy is. a. intelligent b. anxious c. shy d. all of the above 6. A voting process to determine the chief is suggested by. a. Merridew b. Piggy c. Ralph d. none of the above 7. With dreary obedience the choir raised their hands. This passage implies that the choirboys. a. don t believe in their hearts that Jack should be chief b. are unintelligent and incapable of independent thought c. are planning to rebel against Jack Merridew d. all of the above 8. Ralph is elected the leader primarily because. a. he is tall b. he is good-looking c. he has the conch shell d. all of the above 9. In the paragraph at the end, the three boys walking on the sand are. a. Ralph, Jack and Piggy b. Jack, Simon and Roger c. Jack, Ralph and Simon d. Ralph, Piggy and Maurice 10. The mood among the three boys at the end of the excerpt is best described as. a. paranoid b. excited c. apprehensive d. relieved Page 8

9 Answer Key 1. B 2. A 3. B 4. B 5. D 6. C 7. A 8. C 9. C 10. B Further Assignments 1. Now that students have completed this StudySync Premium Lesson, have them read the entirety of William Golding s Lord of the Flies. Continue to foster in-class discussion about the themes and issues in Golding s novel. Have students write essays using the prompts they did not respond to before, drawing examples from the whole text, or have them come up with their own. (RL , 6, 9-10 and W , 9-10) 2. Screen for the class the 1963 film version of Lord of the Flies. After the screening, discuss the filmmakers interpretation of Golding s original text, asking students to identify which elements of the story were changed or removed. Questions to consider: Why do you think the filmmakers made these changes to the original story? How do these changes affect the overall story? Which version do you prefer, and why? (RL and SL ) 3. Screen for the class an episode (or episodes) of the TV show Lost and compare it to Lord of the Flies. Follow the screening with an in-class discussion: What is similar about these two works: setting, themes, characters, allusions? How do the two works diverge? How is Lost indebted to Golding s novel? Which do you prefer and why? For an additional assignment, have students write an essay response about a shared theme in the two works (e.g. man s inherent violence), comparing/contrasting how it is represented in each. (RL and SL and W , 4, 9) 4. Lord of the Flies has had a profound presence and influence in popular culture over the past fifty years. At home, students should research and select an artifact for presentation in the following class. They should each present what they ve found with accompanying video or audio clips. Grade them on the depth Page 9

10 and originality of their searches! (W and SL ) 5. Have students read critic Harold Bloom s introduction essay to Lord of the Flies. ( In Bloom s essay, he posits the question whether the boys violent and savage inclinations are a product of their nature or of the disciplinarian nature of their schooling. Have students respond to this question essentially an issue of nature vs. nurture in an essay of at least 300 words. (W , 4, 8-9) 6. As a class, brainstorm a list of adjectives that could be used to describe good leaders. Use this as a vocabulary building exercise to push students to think beyond basic words. Once students have a solid list of vocabulary words, ask them which of the boys in the excerpt Jack, Ralph, Piggy, Simon, etc. best embodies these characteristics. (ELL) Page 10

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