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The Alchemist: Novel Unit Plan for 9th grade
Transcript of The Alchemist: Novel Unit Plan for 9th grade
by Jessie Nastasi
• The Alchemist by Paolo Coelho (novel)
• Poems: “Road Not Taken” Frost, “I am From” George Ella Lyons, conflict, colors, etc.
• “Araby” Joyce
• Personal Narratives written by students, Travel narratives, quests in literature
• Informational texts on Alchemy, biographies of successful people
• Vidoes: TED talks, YouTube on Plot, Theme, Character, Conflict, and Locations (Andalusia, Sahara)
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.9-10.2 Theme and summary.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.9-10.3.B Narrative techniques.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.9-10.3.D sensory language.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.9-10.5 Writing as a process.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.9-10.6 Use technology, …
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.9-10.4 Produce clear and coherent writing …
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.9-10.4 Present information, findings, and supporting evidence
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.9-10.5 Make strategic use of digital media
This unit focuses on the study of narrative structure, using Paulo Coelho’s bestseller, The Alchemist as a model text. The students will learn about various elements that contribute to a narrative text structure. There is also a social justice lesson on stereotyping, a Socratic seminar over the thematic essential questions.
Into Activity: Students will complete an Anticipation Guide using the thematic essential questions presented as statements. They will read the Myth of Narcissus, learn about annotations and start keeping Double Entry Journals. They will do a quick-write on the prologue.
Interactive - Students will engage in discussions, jigsaw reading, and pair work throughout.
My favorite lesson is the sensory details color poem; examples of sensory items can be brought for students to interact with such as scented wax, trail mix, photos, music, textural items (wood, silk, feather, sandpaper, water). Sensory centers are set up with a gallery walk style brainstorm.
Reading Component- In Lesson 6 students read 50 micro-biographies of successful people who failed at first, then select one to read a full biography about and write a summary of that person’s life (CCSS 10.2).
Beyond Activity: Map out Santiago’s journey, include obstacles he encounters and lessons he learns in their locations. This serves as a review of the book and reinforces concepts of narrative we have learned throughout the unit, color-coding events, characters, symbols, etc.
Students will produce a personal narrative writing piece linking a life experience they have had to something in The Alchemist, integrating quotes as they tell their story.
Students will analyze theme in a group project, Theme Pyramids” in which they will demonstrate how a theme they select which is present in the text of The Alchemist is also in a film of the group’s choice, and three informational articles. They give a short creative presentation, and individually write a reflection paper.
Thematic Essential Questions:
• What prevents people from pursuing their dreams?
• Do people control their own fate or destiny?
• Are people who follow their dreams more likely to achieve great happiness, or not?
• Is there magic in the world?
• Does attaining your dreams or goals require either suffering, sacrifice, or sometimes, both?
• Is success in life dependent on the decisions a person makes?
• Are simple things in life the most difficult to understand?
• Should love hold us back from pursuing personal dreams?
• What should be our first consideration when choosing a life’s work?
• Does achieving great happiness require traveling to far off places?
• How does where you are from shape your identity?
• What is happiness and what is the degree of importance in one’s life?
• What is your personal legend?
• How does labeling and stereotyping influence how we look at and understand the world?
• What is Alchemy?
• What is true love?