Do the Right Thing Today Nonfiction Literature Circles
Honors Project Overview
For your honors option for this project, you will read and respond to a nonfiction text about modern-day race relations and racial justice. You will form a group with 1-2 other students and select one of the books below to read for your honors project. As a group, you will set a reading schedule and a means to demonstrate close reading of the book (reading response logs, annotations, prepared discussion questions). You will be required to attend office hours each Wednesday beginning on Wednesday, May 3rd to discuss your book in literature circles and demonstrate evidence of your independent reading.
Options for Literature Circles
Group and book sign-ups due Monday, April 24th during office hours. Note: No two groups may read the same book-- first come, first serve!
Wednesday, May 24th (project due on Friday, May 26th by 10AM to Turnitin.com and a printed copy to Deepti)
Once you have completed your book as a group, you must complete a project that reflects on your learning on your novel, connecting it to themes in To Kill a Mockingbird. You may choose any of the options below, which include both independent and group project options depending on your group’s preference. If you have another project idea, you are welcome to propose it to me for approval.
Your project choice from the options below, or your own project proposal, is due Friday, May 12th.Note: You will need to let me know on that date whether you will be completing an individual or group project.
The final project is due Friday, May 26th by 10AM to Turnitin.com and a printed copy to Deepti; no extensions!
1. New York Times-Style Book Review (Independent project) Read The Times’sBooks section to scan several current book reviews of novels, story collections and poetry, and to use the search feature to find reviews of older books. Next, make a list of common elements. These might include a summary of the plot or main points or themes, comparisons or references to the writer’s earlier works, discussion of the writer’s contemporaries or influences, how the reviewer assesses the work’s quality; connections (if any) the reviewer has to the subject matter; and the like. Next, write your own Times-style review of a book, incorporating many of these elements. If The Times has also reviewed the book you’ve chosen, avoid reading it until you have crafted your own review, of course.
2. Book Talk, With You as Host (Independent or group project) Create a podcast around a book or author, perhaps inspired by the format of those found in theTimes’ Book Review. You might act as host and introduce several different segments, such as a mock interview with the author or an expert on the topic, or a discussion of how a classic book is suddenly timely. You might also include free-form segments like “The Book That Changed My Life,” “What We’re Reading,” or “My First-Ever Favorite Book.” You could vary these with “advertisements” for books, top-10 lists of favorite authors or characters, or news about book-related events, such asonline book discussions or local events such as readings given by authors. Or, include an “interview” with the author, drawing from research such as published interviews, profiles, memoirs and biographies to ground the portrayal in fact. Another idea? Role-play a conversation of writers from the past or present sitting down together to talk about one another’s work, or their own works in progress, with the podcast acting as the “tape recorder” that captures the whole thing.
3. Book Report by Video (Independent or group project) Work independently or with others in a group to create a short video about a book or author you have read. You might voice-over narration and and include interviews, as inthis example which is about the “Babar” series of children’s books. Be creative about your interviewees. For instance, you might talk to fans of a book series waiting until midnight for the release of the next installment; people of the same generation about what a seminal book meant to them as children; or experts like teachers, professors and historians who can weigh in on the significance of a often-taught book, or on abook controversy. Another approach to the video is to stage key scenes from novels or stories, or record dramatic readings, with sound effects. Or, make an author and his or her works the subject of a video, with an actor portraying him or her and reenacting important career and life events.