Making Inferences: Analyzing How Words and Actions Reveal Character in To Kill a Mockingbird (Chapters 11–13) | EL Education Curriculum

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ELA 2012 G8:M2A:U2:L1

Making Inferences: Analyzing How Words and Actions Reveal Character in To Kill a Mockingbird (Chapters 11–13)

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Long Term Learning Targets

  • I can cite text-based evidence that provides the strongest support for my analysis of literary text. (RL.8.1)
  • I can analyze how specific dialogue or incidents in a plot propel the action, reveal aspects of a character, or provoke a decision. (RL.8.3)

Supporting Targets

  • I can support my inferences about Chapters 11 through 13 of To Kill a Mockingbird with the strongest evidence from the text.
  • I can analyze what other characters' dialogue about Atticus reveals about his character.
  • I can analyze how Atticus's words and actions reveal his character.

Ongoing Assessment

  • Structured notes from Chapters 11-13 (from previous two lessons' homework)
  • Three Threes in a Row Note-catcher
  • Atticus Note-catcher

Agenda

AgendaTeaching Notes

1. Opening

A. Engaging the Reader and Reviewing Learning Targets: Vocabulary (10 minutes)

2. Work Time

A. Close Reading: Three Threes in a Row (20 minutes)

B. Character Analysis: Atticus Note-catcher (10 minutes)

3. Closing and Assessment

A. Debrief and Preview Homework: Add to Taking a Stand Anchor Chart (5 minutes)

4. Homework

A. First read of the Chapter 14 summary provided by the teacher and Chapter 15 of the novel with structured notes.

  • In this lesson, students will work with vocabulary words, mostly adjectives, from all the previous chapters in the novel in an activity called I Have/Who Has. This activity enables students to practice listening skills and work with a full set of 25 words while being responsible for only one or two words to participate in the activity.
  • Students will also answer text-dependent questions about Chapters 11 and 13 using Three Threes in a Row, a protocol introduced in Module 1, Unit 1, Lesson 10. This activity allows students to work in groups to answer a row of questions before being the "experts" for their classmates during the circulation time.
  • Students read only a summary of Chapter 14 and won't work with the content during this lesson.
  • For a sample completed version of the Taking a Stand anchor chart, see the supporting materials in Unit 2, Lesson 8.
  • For a sample completed version of the Atticus Note-catcher, see the supporting materials in Unit 2, Lesson 10.
  • In advance: Copy and cut I Have/Who Has strips; choose groups for Three Threes in a Row; choose Discussion Appointments.
  • Post: Learning targets; Taking a Stand anchor chart.
  • Review: Three Threes in a Row protocol (Module 1, Unit 1, Lesson 10).
  • As noted in Unit 1, Lesson 8, students who struggle may benefit from having a completely separate packet with all of the "Supported Structured Notes" for the entire novel. If you have not already prepared such a packet for the Unit 2 homework, consider doing so in advance of Unit 2, Lesson 1.

Vocabulary

Vocabulary from Chapters 1-13 (provided on "I have, who has?" strips), including new words: confined (132), livid (133), commence (141), undulate (142), beholden (148)

Materials

  • I Have/Who Has strips (teacher-created; see Teaching Note above and Supporting Materials)
  • I Have/Who Has strips (includes lesson # of words) (for Teacher Reference)
  • Structured Notes graphic organizers for Chapters 1-13 (from Unit 1)
  • To Kill a Mockingbird (book; one per student)
  • Three Threes in a Row Note-catcher (one per student)
  • Three Threes in a Row Note-catcher (for Teacher Reference; one to display)
  • Document camera
  • Atticus Note-catcher (begun in Unit 1, Lesson 9)
  • Taking a Stand anchor chart (begun in Unit 1, Lesson 11)
  • To Kill a Mockingbird Structured Notes graphic organizer, Chapters 14 and 15 (one per student)
  • To Kill a Mockingbird Supported Structured Notes graphic organizer, Chapters 14 and 15 (optional; for students needing additional support)

Opening

OpeningMeeting Students' Needs

A. Engaging the Reader and Reviewing Learning Targets: Vocabulary (10 minutes)

  • Invite students to get out their Structured Notes for Chapters 1-13. While students are doing this, distribute the I Have/Who Has strips. It is important that all the strips are handed out, as each one relies on the strip before and after. Some students may have two strips. The teacher may also choose to participate.
  • Ask students to make sure they know the definition of their "I have" word by checking the vocabulary definitions in their structured notes. They should put their notes away after checking their word.
  • Let students know that they will participate in I Have/Who Has. Briefly review the directions:
  • The first person to go reads the "Who has____?" on his or her strip.
  • Students listen carefully to the definition, and the student with the vocabulary word reads, "I have _____." That student then reads his or her "Who has _____?"
  • I Have/Who Has continues until it returns to the first person who read.
  • Explain that each strip is connected to a strip before and after. It isn't important to start at the "beginning," as the game will eventually return to the first person if done properly.
  • Clarify directions as needed, then begin by choosing a student to read his or her "Who has_____?" first. Be sure to keep a master copy of the strips to quickly provide help to students if they get stuck or to correct them if an incorrect answer is given.
  • After an initial practice round, the class should do the activity one or more times as time permits. Consider timing each round and having a friendly competition to see which class can complete the activity quickest. Another variation is to have students swap strips after each round so they are exposed to more words; however, this tends to make each round longer.
  • Collect the strips. Direct student attention to the posted learning targets.
  • Read the first learning target aloud:
  • "I can support my inferences about Chapters 11 through 13 of To Kill a Mockingbird with the strongest evidence from the text." 
  • Share with students that they will continue to work in pairs to collect the strongest evidence in the novel.
  • Read the last two learning targets aloud:

    *   "I can analyze what other characters' dialogue about Atticus reveals about his character. I can analyze how Atticus's words and actions reveal his character."

  • Explain to students that some of the strongest evidence in today's lesson will have to do with collecting details and evidence that helps them understand Atticus's character.

  • Provide ELLs and struggling students with the definition to the word on their strip. Teachers can also use their judgment as they hand out the strips by providing struggling students with more familiar words.

Work Time

Work TimeMeeting Students' Needs

A. Close Reading: Three Threes in a Row (20 minutes)

Note: This is not a pass-the-paper activity. Students each write on their own Note-catcher. They must listen, process, and summarize.

  • Distribute the Three Threes in a Row Note-catcher and have students get out their copies of To Kill a Mockingbird. Assign each group one row (three questions) of the Note-catcher. (Depending on class size, more than one group may have the same set of three questions.)
  • Give directions:

Part 1:

1.Your group answers just the three questions on your row.

2.Take 10 minutes as a group to read your three questions, reread the text, and jot your answers.

Part 2:

3.Then you will walk around the room to talk with students from other groups. Bring your notes and text with you.

4.Ask each person to explain one and only one answer.

5.Listen to the explanation and then summarize that answer in your own box.

6.Record the name of the student who shared the information on the line in the question box.

7.Repeat, moving on to another student for an answer to another question. (Ask a different person for each answer so you interact with six other students total.)

  • Have students begin Part 1 in their small groups. Circulate to listen in and support as needed. Probe, pushing students to dig back into the text to find answers to each question.
  • After 10 minutes, focus students whole group. Begin Part 2 and give them about 7 minutes to circulate.
  • Then ask students to return to their seats and refocus whole group. 
  • Display the Three Threes in a Row Note-catcher (for Teacher Reference) on the document camera for students to check their answers. Students will be able to use the Three Threes in a Row Note-catcher for the character analysis in Part B.Listen for them to remember that comparing means noticing similarities and differences, while contrasting means noticing differences. Remind students that they discussed the difference between comparing and contrasting earlier in their studies (Unit 1, Lesson 4).
  • After students have read the poem ask them to read the Performance Task Prompt & underline the main aspects of the task.
  • Think-Pair-Share:

    *   "How will a two voice poem allow you to compare and contrast Salva and Nya?"

    *   "How will you use the novel and informational texts?"

  • Use of protocols like Three Threes in a Row allows for total participation of students. It encourages critical thinking, collaboration, and social construction of knowledge. It also helps students practice their speaking and listening skills.
  • Text-dependent questions can be answered only by referring explicitly back to the text being read. This encourages students to reread the text for further analysis and allows for a deeper understanding.

B. Character Analysis: Atticus Note-catcher (10 minutes)

  • Invite students to sit with one of their Discussion Appointments. Direct them to take out their Atticus Note-catcher. Explain that the previous activity should have given them some ideas for new evidence to add to their Note-catcher. Remind them that they are searching for evidence of what Atticus says and does, plus what others say about him, and are interpreting that evidence.
  • Tell students that they will work with their partner to review Chapters 11 and 13 to locate more evidence that helps them understand Atticus's character. Encourage them to use information from the Three Threes in a Row activity to get started.
  • Listen for students to use the quotes from the Note-catcher as evidence and provide explanations, such as: "Atticus lives the Golden Rule" and "Atticus believes taking a stand for what you believe in takes courage." Direct students' attention to the middle column of the Three Threes in a Row Note-catcher as you probe for connecting Atticus's character to the Golden Rule.
  • Circulate and support student pairs as needed. Provide about 5 minutes for them to search for and compile evidence, and if time, invite pairs to share with the class the details they found and inferences they made. Explain that they will continue to use this Note-catcher throughout Unit 2, so they should hold on to it.
  • At the end of this activity, collect students' Three Threes in a Row Note-catcher to monitor progress and inform instruction.
  • Note-catchers provide scaffolding that is especially critical as students collect evidence to use later in the module.

Closing & Assessments

Closing

A. Debrief and Preview Homework: Add to Taking a Stand Anchor Chart (5 minutes)

  • Ask students to turn and talk to their partner to find any instances of a character taking a stand in Chapters 11 or 13. Listen for students to identify Mrs. Dubose as having taken a stand. Students might also point out that Jem takes a stand in Chapter 11 by destroying Mrs. Dubose's camellias. This would be a good opportunity to differentiate between taking a stand for a worthwhile cause and taking a stand that hurts others. Some students may point out that Atticus takes a stand against Aunt Alexandra's obsession with good breeding and social position at the end of Chapter 13. This is very subtle but speaks to Atticus's belief that one's character is more important than heritage.
  • Cold call pairs to share their ideas. Add them to the Taking a Stand anchor chart.
  • Distribute the To Kill a Mockingbird Structured Notes graphic organizer, Chapters 14 and 15. Preview the homework.

Homework

HomeworkMeeting Students' Needs
  • Complete a first read of the Chapter 14 summary provided by the teacher and read Chapter 15 of the novel. Take notes using the Structured Notes graphic organizer. Answer the focus question:

*   "In Chapter 15, who takes a stand? Why? Use the strongest evidence from the novel in your answer."

  • Provide struggling learners with the supported structured notes for additional scaffolding as they read the novel.

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