When reading something as complicated as the Iliad, it’s easy for us teachers just to get through it and give students comprehension questions. We justify it since it takes too long just to get them to understand it.
On the other hand, we can depend too much on sparknotes or other support to help them to read it. But the truth is, with the proper support, we can help them to get through it without all that.
Instead of comprehension questions, I ask them to create their own notes using post-its on who all the characters are, ask their own questions, and find the answers. The goal of the project is to recreate a book of the Iliad in groups in 3 ways: in a graphic novel, a short skit script, and to perform the skit in front of the classroom. The skills they will learn to create these are based on the Webbs DOK chart 4: to apply concepts, create and design their own drawn, written, and performed version of the Illiad.
If you would like a free version of one of our most successful lessons that teach students how to write a solid conclusion paragraph, click HERE.

Students will study Ray Bradbury and his 4 short stories in the book to get a good understanding of the author’s choice, theme, tone, diction, mood, style, text structure, and imagery.

The goal is to be able to “hear” the author and understand that authors have their own purpose for writing.

To find our purpose for reading, we have to understand what is written and somewhat pretend like we can have a conversation with the author.

The final project of this unit will be to create a series of social media posts (quotes and explanation) from the point of view of Ray Bradbury which explains a little bit about who he is, what he believes, his style, and a few of his most impactful beliefs or quotes that we gather from his writings.

We will practice annotating texts, using reading strategies, learning academic language, and how to pick out the important quotes from the text and be able to respond to those quotes verbally and on paper.

It’s important to give students time to “discover” how to read and analyze stories.

The students have been learning about the choices the author makes to create the story to cause their audience to think certain things about the topic, the characters and the themes of the story.

As we have been reading Jekyll and Hyde, I have searched everywhere for discussion questions to use to analyze tone, imagery, diction, structure and the other literary devices but I couldn’t find anything, so I made my own.

I have included literary devices, scenario discussions, content questions, and more.

Discussion templates are some of the best ways to get quiet or unsure ESL students to get talking.

This lesson uses the Aesop Fables as the reading text but the discussion cards could be used with any text of interest to the students.

This can be used and repeated weekly to practice and get deeper with discussions and grow in students’ academic discussion.

Each lesson that I create is designed with the next step in mind: repetition, academic growth, and how they will apply their skills within their English language abilities.

The amazing thing about templates and discussion cards is that the students can use them within any language level and they grow with practice.

Note: If you like this, check out my other lessons that use these same strategies and please leave a rating for me so that others can also benefit.

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