Wednesday, March 21, 2012

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Novel Study: Funny in Farsi

Lesson Plan: Introducing a Novel Study, Funny in Farsi
Length of Time: 80 minutes
Previous/Subsequent Lessons: Post-midterm; prior to now, we’ve done a lot of intensive reading of academic articles and a few short stories. We are now starting a novel study, to increase extensive reading for pleasure.
1) Remind students of an additional purpose in reading—to relate to someone else’s experience
2) Prepare them for the topic on immigration and introduce them to the novel


Warm-up/Housekeeping (10 minutes)

  • Greeting, chat about spring break travels
  • How did the place you visited compare with Hammond?
  • Did you learn anything
  • Follow-up on their extensive reading assignment Collect Books
  • How many days did they read for 15 minutes or more?
  • Write their answer on a notecard along with their name

Topic Introduction: Immigrants in the USA

Discussion Questions: (10 minutes)

Compare international students (such as yourselves) with immigrants in the USA
International Students in the USA
Immigrants in the USA

How would your life be different if you knew that you were going to spend the rest of your life here in the USA?

Reading: “It Takes Courage” – from Impressions 1, Thompson & Heinle (30 minutes) 

  1. Distribute copies of the essay
  2. Reading instructions: You have 10-15 minutes to read as much of the article as you can. Don’t look up any words you don’t know—just skip them or guess them. After we finish, we’ll discuss: “What were the main obstacles Cecilia faced, and what is her advice for overcoming those obstacles?” (Question written on chalkboard)
  3. Discuss in groups of 3-4 the question. Report conclusions to the whole class.
Introduce the Novel: Funny in Farsi
Explain that we’ll be reading a book about an immigrant to the USA.
Previewing the book: Give a handout with the following questions. In groups, they need survey the book.

Previewing Funny in Farsi
Cover: Look at what is on the cover. Answer the questions.
What do you think the tone/style of the book will be? Why?
 What does “memoir” mean?
Back Cover: Read the summary on the back
What characters will be in the book?
What are some themes/topics we will see in the story?
Table of Contents
Look at the chapter titles. What do you think each chapter will be about?

Homework: Read p. 1-16 (First three chapters) for next class to prepare for a quiz; Write a reflection on Blackboard.