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  1. Classroom Resources | Grades   9 – 12  |  Lesson Plan  |  Minilesson
    Decoding the Dystopian Characteristics of Macintosh's "1984" Commercial
    This lesson uses the "1984" Macintosh Commercial to introduce students to dystopian characteristics. Students analyze techniques used in the commercial and identify the comments that it makes about contemporary society.
  2. Classroom Resources | Grades   9 – 12  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson
    Demonstrating Understanding of Richard Wright's Rite of Passage
    Students use the elements of persuasion for a specific audience to demonstrate their understanding of Richard Wright's accessible and engaging coming-of-age novel, Rite of Passage.
  3. Classroom Resources | Grades   9 – 12  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson
    Developing Characterization in Raymond Carver's "A Small, Good Thing"
    Students read Raymond Carver's story "A Small, Good Thing," focusing on characterization in order to develop one of the static characters—the hit-and-run driver who causes Scotty's death—more fully.
  4. Classroom Resources | Grades   11 – 12  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson
    Examining the Legacy of the American Civil Rights Era
    As part of their study of Richard Wright's Black Boy, students research and reflect on the current black-white racial divide in America. By examining the work of literature in the context of contemporary events, students will deepen their understanding of the work and of what it means to be an American today.
  5. Classroom Resources | Grades   9 – 12  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson
    Exploring Literature through Letter-Writing Groups
    Students discuss literature through a series of letter exchanges, as a one-time assignment or throughout the year with the students discussing, and making connections among, a number of literary works.
  6. Classroom Resources | Grades   9 – 12  |  Lesson Plan
    Exploring Satire with Shrek
    The movie Shrek introduces the satirical techniques of exaggeration, incongruity, reversal, and parody. Students brainstorm fairy tale characteristics, identify satirical techniques, then create their own satirical versions of fairy tales.
  7. Classroom Resources | Grades   9 – 12  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson
    Exploring Setting: Constructing Character, Point of View, Atmosphere, and Theme
    Students read texts by Dybek, Dickens, Poe, and Morrison to explore how authors use language to create setting and, in turn, how setting constructs other elements in a literary work.
  8. Classroom Resources | Grades   K – 12  |  Calendar Activity  |  March 11
    Ezra Jack Keats was born on this day in 1916.
    In celebration of Keats' birthday, students write stories that include some characters from Keats' books and practice using collage techniques with the Collage Machine.
  9. Professional Development | Grades   5 – 12  |  Strategy Guide
    Facilitating Participation with Silent Conversations
    This guide introduces silent conversations, a collaborative learning technique that has students
    thinking, sharing, and reflecting about important questionsóbut through writing rather than talk.
  10. Classroom Resources | Grades   9 – 12  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson
    Facilitating Student-Led Seminar Discussions with The Piano Lesson
    August Wilson's play The Piano Lesson invites students to ask a number of questionsóbig
    and small. Students learn how to create effective discussion questions and then put them to use in student-led discussions.

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