Unit Plan: Exploring Identity

English Language Arts / Grade 10

Big Ideas

The exploration of text and story deepens understanding of one’s identity, others, and the world.

Concepts:

  • Identity
  • Nature vs. Nurture
  • Perspective/Voice in texts
Essential Questions

Students will keep considering…

  • Who am I? How do I define myself ? How does my identity change and evolve?
  • How does making connections between text and self deepen my understanding of my own identity?
  • How does understanding my own identity help me to connect and empathize with others?
Evaluative Criteria

TEACHER EVALUATIVE CRITERIA

Criteria
Formative assessment:
Observation in class, participation in activities for each short story, completion of skill/knowledge components

Formative tasks:

  • Box of Self
  • Elements of Short Stories: completion of charts for all stories
  • Reflective writing tasks based on three of the short stories
  • Character monologue
  • Self, peer and teacher feedback and reflection—ongoing throughout the unit
  • Checkpoint quizzes

Summative assessment:
Personal Profile Performance Task

Rubric:
See attached Personal Profile rubric (DOWNLOAD)

 Adaptations:

  • Read aloud of all short stories: focus on the understanding of identity, not individual reading and decoding skills.
  • Refer to NVSD Adaptations Checklist for further support
  • Work with Learning Services staff to support with adaptations for students with IEPs

Differentiation:

  • Requirements of the performance task product can be differentiated based on learning styles and needs
  • Student choice in texts/sources: poetry, short stories, novels, web articles, non-fiction, movies, songs, documentaries, TV shows etc.
  • Student choice in the presentation of the Personal Profile: blog, website, Prezi, PowerPoint, Show Me, Vlog etc.

Extension:
Students can add other components to the personal profile that include connection to the similar Big Ideas in other curricular areas

Monitoring Progress

Teacher will monitor progress:

 Criteria:

Use techniques to check for understanding: exit tickets, quizzes, student interviews, observation, mini group presentations etc.

Differentiation:

  • Allow students to select their own short stories for discussion, use videos or Totals around the identity theme, read aloud of text, partner activities as needed, use LAC teacher to support differentiation
  • Lesson activities can be differentiated based on learning styles and student needs
Resources

Suggested Short Stories

Wild Horses by Brian Fawcett, The Persian Carpet by Hanan Shaykh, Legend of the Sugar Girl by Joseph Boyden, On the Sidewalk, Bleeding by Evan Hunter, Just Lather, That’s All by Hernando Telles

See also:

Reflection

How will teachers and their students reflect on and evaluate the completed project?

Constant feedback from students and dialogue after each activity outlined in the Learning Events will help to direct and adapt what is explored in the next activity. Self, peer and teacher evaluation of the Performance Task and its alignment with the essential questions.

Teacher:
Next time I teach this unit I would…

Allow students to select the short stories that link to Identity.

Student:
My students needed:

Process:
Product:
Content:

Potential Student Misunderstanding:

Stage 3 – Learning Plan

 

EXECUTE THE LEARNING

PLAN LEARNING EVENTS:

  • These learning events/activities are suggested activities only. 
  • In some cases the plans are not fully completed lesson plans. 
  • The teacher may choose some lessons/activities to span over several lessons. 
  • Teachers may add, revise and adapt these lessons based on the needs of their students, their personal preferences for resources, and the use of a variety of instructional techniques.

Learning events are enriched for students when teachers consider the “WHERE TO” acronym and guiding organizer by Wiggins and McTighe.

> Click here for more information on WHERETO

Where To

Where: Where are we going in this lesson Why? What is expected of my students during and after this lesson? • Present the performance task to students early in the unit • Post essential questions; students can generate their own questions as well • Check for  misconceptions
How: How will I hook and hold student interest during this lesson? • Use a provocation as an entry point • Present students with a mystery or challenge
Equip: How will I equip students for expected performances? How will I make sure to teach the foundational skills so that they can understand and complete tasks? • Access understandings and experience with solid instructional practices • Consider strategies that work for divers e learners • Incorporate literacy 44 strategies
Rethink and Revise: How will I help students reflect, rethink and revise their ideas, writing, and tasks? • Have students rethink the big idea • Have students reflect on  their learning  to build understanding
Evaluate: How will students self-evaluate and reflect on their learning after each lesson/task? Some ideas for self-evaluation include:

• Ticket out the door • Rubrics and checklists • Formative assessments and feedback

Tailor: How will I tailor learning to varied needs, interests and styles? (refer to the NVSD Adaptations Checklist). • Differentiate to your students with the product, the process and the content
Organize:   How will I organize and sequence the learning in each lesson and transition to a new lesson? • Start with the end in mind
Please note that the order in which teachers present this to their students is not mandated to the order of the acronym.

 

 The Learning Events should always be prefaced by focusing on the essential questions:

  • Who am I? How do I define myself? How does my identity change and evolve?
  • How does making connections between text and self deepen my understanding of my own identity?
  • How does understanding my own identity help me to connect and empathize with others?

 

Lesson 1 - Who Are You? What Is Identity?

 The Learning Events should always be prefaced by focusing on the essential questions:

  • Who am I? How do I define myself? How does my identity change and evolve?
  • How does making connections between text and self deepen my understanding of my own identity?
  • How does understanding my own identity help me to connect and empathize with others?

Who Are You? What Is Identity?

  1. What elements affect identity? (e.g. nature/nurture, culture, where we live (country, community etc.), family structure and dynamics, friends, social media, era we live in…) (Acquisition, Meaning)
  2. How can your identity change/evolve over time? (Acquisition, Meaning)
  3. Formative Task: Box of Self: 10 items/visuals/quotes that define you: place in a shoebox or create some kind of visual display.  Gallery walk, guess who it is, present to peers.
  4. Self-reflection: what did you learn about yourself during this process? What did you learn about some of your classmates? Do you now have a deeper understanding about the concept of identity? (Meaning, Transfer)
Lesson 2 - Review the "Identity" of Short Stories

 The Learning Events should always be prefaced by focusing on the essential questions:

  • Who am I? How do I define myself? How does my identity change and evolve?
  • How does making connections between text and self deepen my understanding of my own identity?
  • How does understanding my own identity help me to connect and empathize with others?

Review the “Identity” of Short Stories

  1. What is a short story? What qualities identify a text as a short story? (Acquisition)
  2. Review the Elements of a Short Story: what qualities define the structure by reviewing the following terms, plot, setting, character, (static, dynamic etc.) mood, conflict (internal, external), point of view, (narration: first person, third person, omniscient etc.) and theme. (Acquisition)
  3. Read aloud a familiar picture book and have the students give specific examples of the elements from the story.  (Meaning, Transfer)
  4. Students complete the “Elements of a Short Story” chart (attached) based on the picture book. (Transfer)
Lesson 3 - Identity Is Shaped by Family

 The Learning Events should always be prefaced by focusing on the essential questions:

  • Who am I? How do I define myself? How does my identity change and evolve?
  • How does making connections between text and self deepen my understanding of my own identity?
  • How does understanding my own identity help me to connect and empathize with others?

 

Identity Is Shaped by Family

Suggested story:  Wild Horses by Brian Fawcett
Read aloud to allow for full comprehension and discussion during the read

1. How does the author’s use of each of the elements of short stories add to our understanding of his identity? Describe his identity using the following guiding questions: (Acquisition, Meaning)

a. Plot: How does the author’s identity change from the beginning of the story to the end? Use this quote as a reference: “Eventually, my sisters went away with the stallions, leaving me with years and years to think about what they were, and what I was, and how, because of them, no one will ever ride me”.  How does this quote clearly show the author’s sense of identity?

b. Setting: What is the setting in the story and how does this provide us with more information about the author’s identity?

c. Character: How has the author’s identity been shaped by his two sisters?  Has sibling rivalry played a role?

d. Tone/Voice: How does the tone used by the author and his sense of voice provide more information about his identity?

e. How does the author use the extended metaphor of the horse to more fully help us know, understand, and empathize with him?

f. Conflict: How does the familial conflict between the author and his sisters, and their juxtaposed behaviours, allow the reader to understand the author’s identity?

g. Point of View: Why is the use of first person narration so effective in this story, as it relates to the idea of identity?

h. Theme: What is the theme of this story? How does the theme support our understanding of who the author is?

2. Reflection: Write a short reflective personal narrative of a childhood experience that had an impact on your identity. (Transfer)

Lesson 4 - Identity Is Shaped by Life Experiences

 The Learning Events should always be prefaced by focusing on the essential questions:

  • Who am I? How do I define myself? How does my identity change and evolve?
  • How does making connections between text and self deepen my understanding of my own identity?
  • How does understanding my own identity help me to connect and empathize with others?

Identity Is Shaped by Life Experiences

Suggested story: The Persian Carpet by Hanan Shaykh
Read aloud to allow for full comprehension and discussion during the read

  1. Complete an “Elements of the Story” chart for this story. (Acquisition, Meaning)
  2. Describe a place or a possession that was/is an important part of your life. How has this shaped who you are? (Meaning, Transfer)
  3. An epiphany is an “aha” moment; a moment of clear understanding. Describe an epiphany you have had. How has this changed or shaped who you are? (Meaning, Transfer)
  4. What is the truth about the Persian carpet theft? How does this epiphany impact the author’s identity and her perception of who her mother’s identity? (Acquisition, Meaning)
  5. Reflection: Have you ever been betrayed? Describe this experience. How did this impact your identity and your understanding of your betrayer’s identity? (Transfer)
Lesson 5 - Identity Is Shaped by Social Connections

 The Learning Events should always be prefaced by focusing on the essential questions:

  • Who am I? How do I define myself? How does my identity change and evolve?
  • How does making connections between text and self deepen my understanding of my own identity?
  • How does understanding my own identity help me to connect and empathize with others?

Identity Is Shaped by Social Connections

Suggested story: On the Sidewalk, Bleeding by Evan Hunter
Read aloud to allow for full comprehension and discussion during the read

  1. Complete an “Elements of the Story” chart for this story (Acquisition, Meaning)
  2. What is a gang? Why do people join gangs? What needs do gangs fulfill for people? Can any social group be considered a gang? (e.g. jocks, brainers, skaters, goths). (Acquisition, Meaning)
  3. How can these types of social connections shape identity? (Meaning)
  4. Andy is identified as a “Royal” by the police officer. Who do you think he really is? (Meaning)
  5. Why is it so important for Andy to take his jacket off? (Meaning)
  6. Why is the quote, “Rain is sweet, I’m Andy” significant? (Meaning)
  7. Write a monologue based on Andy’s death and the gang situation in the story. The monologue should be a stream of consciousness, meaning that it is the internal thoughts of the character, not thoughts that would be expressed out loud. The monologue should critically explore the situation in the story and your character’s feelings toward it.  You can choose to write with one of the following identities: Laura, the person who stabbed Andy, Andy’s mother or father, the police officer, another member of the Royals, or a member of the Guardians. How would your character feel about Andy, based on who they are? (Transfer)
Lesson 6 - Identity is shaped by Culture

 The Learning Events should always be prefaced by focusing on the essential questions:

  • Who am I? How do I define myself? How does my identity change and evolve?
  • How does making connections between text and self deepen my understanding of my own identity?
  • How does understanding my own identity help me to connect and empathize with others?

Identity is shaped by Culture

Suggested story: Legend of the Sugar Girl by Joseph Boyden
Read aloud to allow for full comprehension and discussion during the read

  1. Complete an “Elements of the Story” chart for this story. (Acquisition, Meaning)
  2. How did the residential school experience shape the identity of the Sugar Girl? (Meaning)
  3. Can a person ever really be assimilated into a culture? What do you think is stronger, nature or nurture? (Meaning)
  4. Why was the girl never happy with her new identity? What did she use to fill the void of who she really was? (Meaning)
  5. Reflection: How can you stay “true” to yourself in the midst of the cultural and societal pressures of being a teenager? What strengths, tools or techniques can you use to be resilient? Describe a time when you had to go against what your friends were doing? (Transfer)
Lesson 7 - Identity Is Shaped by Morals/Values

 The Learning Events should always be prefaced by focusing on the essential questions:

  • Who am I? How do I define myself? How does my identity change and evolve?
  • How does making connections between text and self deepen my understanding of my own identity?
  • How does understanding my own identity help me to connect and empathize with others?

Identity Is Shaped by Morals/Values

Suggested story: Just Lather, That’s All by Hernando Tellez
Read aloud to allow for full comprehension and discussion during the reading

  1. Complete an “Elements of the Story” chart for this story. (Acquisition, Meaning)
  2. Who is Torres? Describe his character in detail, using text support. (Acquisition)
  3. Who is the Captain? Describe his character in detail, using text support. (Acquisition)
  4. The author refers to men of “imagination” and men of  “action”. In what way does each man show both imagination and action? (Meaning)
  5. How does the conflict within the story define the identity of each man? (Meaning)
  6. How do the morals and values of each of the men determine how they deal with their conflict with each other? (Meaning)
  7. If you were the barber in the story, what would you do and why? Justify your answer. How does the barber justify his decision to not kill Torres? (Meaning)
  8. Describe a situation where you were confronted with a moral dilemma. How did you stay true to your own beliefs in a pressure situation? What does this say about you? (Transfer)
Lesson 8 - Review and Wrap Up

 The Learning Events should always be prefaced by focusing on the essential questions:

  • Who am I? How do I define myself? How does my identity change and evolve?
  • How does making connections between text and self deepen my understanding of my own identity?
  • How does understanding my own identity help me to connect and empathize with others?

Review and Wrap Up

  1. Review the factors that determine identity by highlighting the learning throughout the unit, using examples from the short stories studied. (Acquisition)
  2. Review the Elements of Short Stories (Acquisition)
  3. Introduce the Performance task and go over the Rubric for the task (Acquisition)
  4. Students work on the Performance Task and prepare for their oral and online presentation (Meaning, Transfer)
  5. Self, peer and teacher evaluation of both process and product of the Performance Task (Transfer)
  6. Teacher and student evaluation of entire unit (Transfer)

The following resources are made available through the British Columbia Ministry of Education. For more information, please visit BC’s New Curriculum.

 

Big Ideas

The Big Ideas consist of generalizations and principles and the key concepts important in an area of learning. The Big Ideas represent what students will understand at the completion of the curriculum for their grade. They are intended to endure beyond a single grade and contribute to future understanding.


Visit the Ministry of Education for more information

Core Competencies

orangecommunicationCommunications Competency

The set of abilities that students use to impart and exchange information, experiences and ideas, to explore the world around them, and to understand and effectively engage in the use of digital media

bluethinkingThinking Competency

The knowledge, skills and processes we associate with intellectual development

greensocialSocial Competency

The set of abilities that relate to students’ identity in the world, both as individuals and as members of their community and society


Visit the Ministry of Education for more information

Curricular Competencies & Content

Curricular Competencies are the skills, strategies, and processes that students develop over time. They reflect the “Do” in the Know-Do-Understand model of curriculum. The Curricular Competencies are built on the thinking, communicating, and personal and social competencies relevant to disciplines that make up an area of learning.


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 Additional Resources

First People's Principles of Learning

To read more about First People’s Principles of Learning, please click here.

For classroom resources, please visit the First Nations Education Steering Committee.