Courage “In the Time of the Butterflies”: A Common Core Exemplar

What is courage? What does it mean to be courageous? The courage demonstrated by the Mirabal sisters in In the Time of the Butterflies is the focus of a study of Julia Alvarez's novel set in the Dominican Republic during the rule of Rafael Trujillo. Class groups collect evidence from the novel that demonstrates the courage of one of the sisters and share their findings with the class. Groups also read and respond to Minou Tavarez Mirabal's speech about violence against women. The packet, packed with activities and resources, is a must-have companion to Alvarez's novel and deserves a spot in your curriculum library.

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CCSS: Designed
Instructional Ideas
  • Share the information about the structure of the novel with readers before they begin the novel
  • Likewise, share information on the location of the Dominican Republic and on Rafael Trujillo before assigning the reading
  • The packet includes a lengthy background article, worksheets and answer keys, links to UN declarations on the elimination of violence against women, and film interviews with Julia Alvarez
  • None