The present Lesson Plan revolves around literature. The chosen
literary topic is Young People and Education related to an excerpt from
Dickens’s novel Hard Times.
The lesson is included in a teaching unit belonging to the prose
section of a module titled Education throughout the ages in Poetry, Prose and
Drama. This module, which lasts l0 hours, is meant to show how great
writers dealt with this theme at different times and in different literary
genres in greatly different contexts. The teaching unit is carried out in the
first term of the school year.
My planned lesson lasts 2 hours and it is devoted to students
attending the fifth year of a Liceo Linguistico. It represents the Practice stage
of the whole teaching unit, since the teacher will have already presented the
prose situation throughout the different ages in the previous lesson of the
same unit, as the Presentation stage.
The lesson is divided into 3 phases (Engage, Study and Activate
phase); on its turn each phase is furtherly divided into more than one step.
The literary passage chosen for study and analysis is A man of
realities, in which the author criticizes the overemphasis placed on
education and discipline in Victorian England. As for the language items
related to the lesson, the literary analysis will indirectly lead to the revision
of the Past tenses and the use of the Modal verbs; the lesson will also imply
the revision and the extension of vocabulary connected with the semantic
area of Education
First of all I planned my lesson considering that today’s teenagers
are used to TV and Web-sites with a very high graphic quality, embedded in
a multi-media world where stimulus comes from different perception
channels. Moreover adolescents are generally driven by the ‘principle of
pleasure’. For these reasons teachers should always find out modern
strategies to win the challenge and be able to arouse students’ interest and
curiosity for the contents he / she wants to propose. Then he / she should
make efforts in lowering students’ affective filter through pleasant activities
which arouse students’ enthusiasm, especially if related to their personal
experience: teenagers can be particularly involved in learning literature by
playing on their personal emotions and wishes.
Finally the teacher should no longer act as the only source of
information but as a guide and facilitator who exhorts and co-ordinates the
students in the class activities and debates, in order to elicit their opinions
and to stimulate their problem solving ability. The starting points of the ratio
of this lesson plan were these fundamental points.
Then I planned my lesson also considering that students employ
different learning attitudes, so I thought to effectively motivate and engage
everybody by focusing on different learning strategies, such as: Cognitive
strategies (e.g. practicing with sounds and writing systems, transcoding information from verbal to diagrammatic form, using reference materials,
recombining, analysing contrastively, highlighting, etc.); Social strategies
(cooperating with , both with peers and teacher, asking questions,
experimenting with language by taking risks, empathizing, becoming aware
of others’ thoughts and feelings, negotiating, etc.); Metacognitive strategies
(overviewing and linking with already known material, finding out about
language learning, becoming aware of how the language works, predicting in
listening/reading, using selective attention by focusing on key-words and
linguistic markers, etc.); Memory strategies (creating mental linkages,
semantic mapping, using key-words, etc.).