Grade: Senior
Subject: Literature

#2909. 21st Century: Make Literature Relevant!

Literature, level: Senior
Posted Thu Sep 29 21:25:37 PDT 2011 by B. Cummings (B. Cummings).
Neville High School, Monroe, LA
Materials Required: Smartboard or class board, copies of Arthur Miller's "The Crucible", student pen and paper
Activity Time: One to two class periods
Concepts Taught: Students will rewrite a scene from "The Crucible" and make it fit in 2011.

1. Ask students to brainstorm about what sets them apart from teenagers of the past and post responses on front board/SmartBoard . Guided questions: How are teens different today? What do teens do today that they couldn't do in in Salem, Mass. in the 1600s or even in 1950s America? How is the teen vernacular different? Hobbies? Dress? Music? Religion? Activities? (Some responses may be addressing rap music, slang, texting, cell phones, YouTube, computers, hip hop, technology, a driver's license, coffee shops, Facebook, chat rooms, Skatetown, football games, malls, Prom, "Emo" attire, Goth kids,....etc.) The list is endless!
2. In small groups, students will recreate a scene from "The Crucible" by making it relevant in 2011. They can add anything to Miller's script from their brainstorming list, but they must stay true to the original scene's turn of events. (i.e., Abigail longing for John, the girls misbehaving and getting caught, the "poppet" or other shocking discovery, the girls pretending to see apparitions, the court's harsh proceedings,Proctor's breakdown, etc.) They can add events, nuances, "fresh" dialogue, new character names, etc. that fit 2011, but the general premise is still there. For example, John Proctor became J-Peezy in one group's rewrite.
3. The new scene is rewritten on paper and later typed before submission to teacher. On final submission day, students act out each new scene with appropriate dress and props inspired by the scene while the other groups become the audience...popcorn is optional!