Utopias: Are Perfect Worlds Possible?

How would the members of your language arts class describe their own utopian universe? Middle schoolers discuss and design the attributes of their perfect worlds, complete with brochures, class discussions, and written arguments about the feasibility of utopian ideals. Focused on Lois Lowry's The Giver, the project provides synthesis and connection to an already rich text.

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CCSS: Adaptable
Instructional Ideas

  • Encourage individuals or groups to craft presentations about their perfect words using various forms of media
  • Bring in examples from movies to illustrate a supposedly perfect world, including PleasantvilleThe Stepford Wives, or the film version of The Giver
  • Play Alanis Morissette's "Utopia" for your class, and analyze the lyrics as they relate to a concept of a personal utopia
Classroom Considerations

  • Lesson is scripted, but you can use the parts that are most relevant to your curriculum and teaching style
  • Font on the supplemental materials is large and may be difficult for some learners to read
Pros

  • Includes lots of helpful reading comprehension strategies, including double-sided journals and Socratic seminars
  • Provides accommodations for different learning styles, extension opportunities, and a list of suggested technology
  • Comes with all necessary materials for implementation and assessment
Cons

  • None