Notes On The Novel ' Fences ' And ' Pied Piper Of Tucson '
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Unit 1 Guide
Students examine the ways in which mystery, tension, and surprise are used in informational and literary texts to engage and
intrigue readers. First, students read short stories and poetry, including a close reading of Joyce Carol Oates’ short story,
“Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?” and Mara Bovsun’s article, “Pied Piper of Tucson;” they identify and describe
ways authors ‘hook and hold’ readers with specific choices. Next, students read the play Fences by Pulitzer Prize winner
August Wilson and analyze the role of stories within in the story to create tension and advance the plot. Fences is the
foundation for the unit’s cornerstone task: after ranking and discussing important lines…show more content… They will discuss rationales for their
rankings, respond to each other’s rationales, and write rationale statements to defend their ranking. Students will then select
one line to perform. This culminates in students performing their lines in a collective performance, and writing reflective
short essays to describe the impact of the important lines exercise on their comprehension of the play. This deeper
comprehension will then be used to finalize the essay responding to the prompt “How does August Wilson use stories within
the story to build mystery, tension, surprise in the play Fences?
Students will read and think about the short story, "Lamb to the Slaughter", by Roald Dahl. As they do so, they will answer
questions and gather evidence related to how the text builds tension in the reader. Students will then use this evidence to
help write an analytical essay.
Tension in Society: Grade 9, Unit 1
District of Columbia Public Schools | 2016 Page 4 of 3
Instructional Focus Areas Aligned Standards
Close Reading Text Set (approx. 8 lessons)
Students closely read “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been,” and analyze how
Oates uses dialogue and character interactions to build