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Layers of Reading: By the Waters of Babylon

Pre-AP English 2 A, English 2 A
by

Micki Clark

on 29 July 2013

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Transcript of Layers of Reading: By the Waters of Babylon

Layers of Reading
English 2 A
Prezi by Mrs. Micki Clark
www.micki-clark.com
Today, we will use the story "By the Waters of Babylon" by Stephen Vincent Benet to do a Layers of Reading activity.

For this activity, you will need the following things:
A copy of the story "By the Waters of Babylon" (in your literature book)
A single sheet of white paper
You may also wish to have a dictionary
On your white paper, I want you to draw three shapes. You may have done this activity last year using circles/ovals, but I find that squares result in less stress over random shapes. :)

You will have one square in the middle of your paper (make it about three inches). Make another larger square surrounding your center square (again, leaving no less than two to three inches of white space), and then you may either draw another square or imagine that the borders of your paper serve as the third.
Step one: Choose a word (either directly from the story or one you come up with) that, in your mind, describes the story or best conveys the mood of the story.

Find a quote from the story that either uses the word you chose, or supports your decision. Write that quote, and then provide a brief explanation.

Here's an example (and NO, you cannot use MINE).
Forbidden
“These things are forbidden—they have been forbidden since the beginning of time.” (John)

I chose this word because the story centers on how John deals with things that are forbidden.
For step two, I want you to choose FOUR visual images that represent the word you've chosen. Draw those images in your middle square (one for each side of your inner square). Beneath each, write a short sentence explaining the connection of the image to your word or quote.
And finally, step three: Consider the word you've selected, and the quote you wrote. Examine each of your four images again carefully. Now, in your outer box, write TWO different messages you feel the author is trying to send to the world regarding your chosen word. Explain yourself.
Get the idea?
When the class finishes, I want you to share your words. Find out who had a word in common with you, and compare your diagrams. On the back of ONE diagram from the group, record the similarities and differences.
“These things are forbidden—they have been forbidden since the beginning of time.” (John)

I chose this word because the story centers on how John deals with things that are forbidden.
Forbidden
It is forbidden to cross the river.
It is forbidden to touch metal.
Fear and forbidding often come hand in hand.
Why do I say this? The priests use fear to ensure that people will behave the laws--fear of death keeps you from touching metal, for example. Also, their own fear of the truth causes them to forbid things (like crossing the river).
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