By examining a series of memoirs, as well as articles, documentaries, and images framing the memoir, students will critically evaluate the phrase, “story behind the headline.” Students will learn that there is a purpose behind every story that is told or any information that is presented to an audience, and will also learn how to analyze evidence through a consciously unbiased perspective. The unit will begin through a series of investigative role-play activities, an Introduction to research, and evidence analysis. Students will analyze memoirs that detail the experiences of individuals born or residing in the United States. After completing the initial activities, students will create their own writing piece that sheds light on an ‘untold story’ in their own community that supports and promotes the growth of their local community.
Students will critically analyze the concept of “the American dream” through reading Of Mice and Men by Jerry Steinbeck. Students will build connections between the effects of the social climate of the novel on the characters' ability to fulfill their “American dream” and the effects of the current social climate and how that affects the “new American dream”. Students will extensively research a social justice issue, the effect said issue has on the American population and those who have the ability to incite change. Students will choose a medium to convey their appeal to a person in power.
Students will be asked to answer the driving question (What drives the choices we make) in a response that includes a multimodal, purposeful text that can both persuade and engage an audience. The scope of choice in terms of method and content should allow students to not only showcase their understanding of a literary theme but manipulate the language and structural strategies used by Shakespeare in the play, “Romeo and Juliet,” as well as the research and persuasive skills utilized during the “debate” portions of the unit, in a way that is personal and meaningful to the students themselves and targets a real community to inspire authentic change.
Students will be asked to answer the driving question (Why do we celebrate heroes?) in a response that includes a research paper and a purposeful narrative film that celebrates a community hero. The scope of choice in terms of method and content should allow students to not only showcase their understanding of a literary theme but manipulate the language and structural strategies used in texts such as the Odyssey in a way that is personal and meaningful to the students themselves and reflects social values they see as needed in their local community.