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Kristen Mazzuca

Education 4265

Three Small Texts To Improve The World:

Social Justice In Classrooms
Teaching Plan Rationale
The overarching idea for this one-week teaching plan is for junior
high drama students to work on their communication skills while
understanding how to verbally communicate storytelling. Students will
focus on general learner outcomes four and five from the Alberta
English language arts program of studies. Students will look at three
childrens picture books and be divided into three groups. Each group
will work on preparing the story verbally to present to younger
audiences. Students will begin by preparing the stories are readers
theatre format, and eventually turn into a full play. Students are able to
work on their textual and visual comprehension of a story, by reading,
then performing the story. Students will able deepen their
understanding of the artistry of communication while collaborating
with others.
Childrens Book Choice Rationale
The first book I have chosen to use in this unit is Morris
Micklewhite and the Tangerine Dress by Christine Baldacchino.
The reason I have chosen this childrens book is because is teaches
students about diversity and inclusivity within our classrooms. This is
an important lesson for not only young children, but the junior high
students as well. This book is written by a Canadian author and was
written recently in 2014. By using this book in the drama classroom,
students have opportunity to put themselves in the characters shoes.
Students are able to authentically learn about diversity and what it
feels like to be left out.
The second book I have chosen to use is The Remarkable
Maria by Patti McIntosh. This story takes a look at disease and
death, while remaining uplifting and encouraging. Maria parents are
diagnosed with AIDS/HIV, which is an important health topic for the
junior high students to explore. While performing for younger
audiences, the story talks about Maria have bad bags within her
body. A Canadian author also writes this story, but audiences are able
to relate and feel for students in other parts of the world. By
performing this story once again, students are able to make a deeper
connection to their characters, while furthering their verbal literacy
communication skills.
The last childrens book used in this unit will be A Promise is a
Promise by Robert Munsch. Again, written by a Canadian author,
this story looks at a different culture within Canada. For students in
junior high, they are able to make the social studies connection to the
Inuit people within Canada. Students when performing for younger

Kristen Mazzuca
Education 4265
audiences are able to demonstrate the importance of promises and
keeping ones word- we also see the importance of listening to our
elders. By performing this story students are once again deepening
their understanding of the story, while building on their verbal literacy
communication skills.

Teaching Plan Overview (Grade 7/8 Drama)

Lesson One
Reading Childrens Books
Students will read through three different childrens books and
decide while they connect most with. Students will interpret the
book they have chosen and create a journal entry on the book
with the reflection and interpretation. Students will then go in
groups with others that have chosen the same story to consider
other ideas about the text, and extend their understanding.
English Language Arts 1.1, 1.2
Lesson Two
Readers Theatre
Students will become familiar with the story they have chosen by
performing a readers theatre version of the text. Students will
chose parts to play from the text and begin practicing the text.
Students will have photocopied scripts of the text to speak from
while performing. Students will perform their plays for the class.
Students will then get back together with their groups to
evaluate their own performances and discuss what they could
work on and what went well. Students will consider how they can
get deeper into their characters by creating characters trees for
their part. The character tree will include their characters
appearance, as well as thoughts, feelings, and beliefs.
English Language Arts 4.3, 5.1, 5.2
Drama 1.11, 1.13, 2.1, 2.3
Lesson Three
Play Development
Students will begin transferring their readers theatre production
into a play format. Students will begin using their physical bodies
and voices to enhance their storytelling. Students will explore
how to add humor through physical movement and vocal
changes. Students will perform their plays for the class and give
constructive criticism to enhance their performance. Students

Kristen Mazzuca
Education 4265
will add another entry into their journals discussing how their
play will be effective in teaching younger audiences a story.
Students will also discuss their feelings towards the characters in
the story, and how they have developed and changed over time.
English Language Arts 4.3, 5.1, 5.2
Drama 1.11, 1.13, 2.1, 2.3
Lesson Four
Play Rehearsal
Students will get together with their groups and practice their
play for the final time before performing for the younger
audiences. After practicing a few times students will get together
and share with the class what they hope the audience will
understand from their play tomorrow. For example, if the group is
performing Morris Micklewhite they may hope that audiences
gain a better understanding of diversity and that the children see
that it is okay to play with everyone no matter what they look
like or wear. Students will then log in their journals their
reflection of the stories message.
English Language Arts 4.3, 5.1, 5.2
Drama 1.11, 1.13, 2.1, 2.3
Lesson 5
Students will perform their childrens stories for the elementary
studies. Students will do their best to use their voice as a tool for
communication in the best way possible, while working with their
groups. Students will also demonstrate attentive listening and
viewing skills while other groups perform. After the performance
students will reflect on their experience and the difference of
performing a text and just reading a text. Students will write their
final extension of the text in their journals by explaining what
they think happens next in the story.
English Language Arts 1.2, 4.3, 5.1, 5.2
Drama 1.11, 1.13, 2.1, 2.3