John Updike Teacher Resources

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Young scholars read a poem and use the TPCASTT strategy for analysis. In this poetry analysis activity, students journal about their future goals and read John Updike's "Ex-Basketball Player." Young scholars discuss the purpose of the poem and complete a TPCASTT graphic organizer. Students complete the 'No Regrets Thought Questions' worksheet.
Using Mark Twain's The Man That Corrupted Hadleyburg, invite your learners to consider the concept of virtue in a democratic society devoted to gain and self-interest. This stellar resource guides your class members through a close reading and discussion, and also includes a video seminar illustrating what high-level discourse regarding the text looks like.
What are the strengths and weaknesses of American individualism and independence? Explore these principles through a close reading of Jack London's To Build a Fire, and engage in high-level discussion with your class by analyzing the characters, story structure, and themes of the text.
What if society sought equality by handicapping the gifted and dispelling any traces of diversity? Kurt Vonnegut Jr. offers one possible answer to this question through his incredibly engaging and thought-provoking satirical story, "Harrison Bergeron". In addition to offering writing prompts and discussion questions that are sure to spark interest and debate amongst your readers, you will also have the opportunity to preview video excerpts where editors of the anthology engage in high-level discourse and work to elicit meaning from the classic American text.
The United States of America was founded on firm ideals of both the pursuit of happiness and a spirit of reverence. Through a close reading of Nathaniel Hawthorne's "The May-Pole of Merry Mount," you can examine what some consider was a "culture war" between these two ideals in the early stages of the new nation. After giving a brief overview of the story, work with your readers through the text using the guided questions provided by this resource. 
Combining a close reading of a classic American text with the study of history can be a very powerful strategy, and this is most certainly the case with this resource using Edward Everett Hale's The Man without a Country. Consider themes as citizenship and national identity using the engaging discussion questions and prompts in this resource, and use the included videos to present an example of high-level discourse.
Examine Erikson's chart on the various stages one goes through growing up. Individually, they write a paper on whether or not they fit into those categories and how they are different today. In groups, for each stage they role play the role of someone in that stage in front of the class.
A series of well-written activities, these lessons prompt middle schoolers reading below grade level (at a second, third, or fourth grade level) to use poetry to practice basic reading skills. They rhyme, build words, make inferences, and practice phonics skills. There are three activities total and an extensive rational/context commentary. The lesson is appropriate for older grades as well.
Students explore what impact the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 had on nine different American novelists. They write and share their own thoughts and feelings, then consider the role writing plays in their own lives, particularly in times of tragedy.
In this online interactive history quiz worksheet, students respond to 50 multiple choice questions about the Spanish American War. Students may submit their answers to be scored.
Students become exposed to British poetry. They identify and discuss the thematic connection between a poem and a song of their choice, and enrich their understanding of poetry through an in-depth analysis of literary devices in the song and poem.
In this literary analysis worksheet, learners respond to 4 short answer and essay questions based on themes of Drugs and Alcohol in All the King's Men. Students also debate the validity of two thesis statements about the text.
Students discuss their responsibility in helping to solve a problem.  In this character traits lesson, students discuss how being part of a solution is better than being part of a problem.  Students role play and practice responsibility with being a problem solver. 
Eleventh graders answer the question Why Westborough? Why did their town develop as it did, what types of industry were here and why. They are introduced to journal writing. Students free write about ideas that stand out from class. They research Eli Whitney and write down an epitaph for his gravestone.
Students develop their own smilies and metaphors. They examine writing of the Poet Laureate. They identify philanthropy in quotations of others.
Ninth graders listen to teacher read-alouds of three poems about personal identity. They engage in activities designed to determine the themes, and literary devices used in the poems. They write an essay as an assessment.
Ninth graders analyze two poems: "The Ex-Basketball Player" and "To an Ahtlete Dying Young" to compare and contrast. They identify several examples of personification, alliteration and simile and write an essay comparing and contrasting the two.
First graders discuss the importance of traditions in families. In groups, they share their traditions at certain times of the year. As a class, they read "When This Box is Full" and create a box representing the different seasons. They also discover how some tradtions are similiar between families.
Students explore poetry. In this literature lesson, students examine music and lyrics by Natalie Merchant in order to make the transition to analyzing poetry by Keats and Wordsworth.
Eighth graders take photographs for a photo essay contest. Using primary source documents, they review various types of artwork and discuss how some of the images have become commonplace. They use the internet to view examples of previous essays based on photos and begin to write their own.

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