Group Discussion

Group Discussion

Things Fall Apart

Opening

Complete a Quick Write.

  • Why do you think the title of the novel is Things Fall Apart ? Looking at the discussion preparation you did for homework, what do you think are the two most important things that have fallen apart? What—or who—caused these changes, and why are they so important?

Open Notebook

Share your responses with your classmates.

Discussion Protocol

Work Time

Review the following discussion protocol with your teacher. Ask any questions you have.

This discussion will be very similar to the other two, with representatives from each character group in the inner circle and everyone else observing from the outer circle. However, there will be a few key differences.

  • Your teacher will take less of a role in facilitating this discussion. You and your classmates will bear most of the responsibility. Remember to build on each other’s ideas, to ask each other questions, and to use references to the text to support your arguments.
  • This discussion is inherently more antagonistic than the other two, as characters will be blaming each other for what has gone wrong. Even as your characters blame each other, try to maintain a positive and respectful tone.
  • In the last few minutes of the discussion, you may step out of character and give your own opinion. Think about whether your opinion was influenced by reading through the eyes of your character.

Discussion Preparation

Work Time

Prepare for the class discussion.

  • Compare your preparation notes with your group members and make any last minute plans about strategy. A different speaker will represent your group this time.

Who?s to Blame?

Work Time

Send your representative to the inner circle for the discussion! Whether you are speaking or listening, you should pay close attention and take notes in order to be able to analyze the discussion later. If you’re in the outer circle, use Outer Circle Tasks 3 for your notes.

  • What has fallen apart in Umuofia? Who’s to blame? How did that person or group cause this change? What, if anything, could or should have been done differently?
  • Who does your character blame? Why? How might that person defend him or herself?
  • Who might blame your character? Why? How can your character defend him- or herself?

The Message of Things Fall Apart

Closing

Write a reflection.

  • Based on your reading, writing, and discussions, what do you think is the ultimate message or lesson of Things Fall Apart ? What do you think was Achebe’s goal in writing it, and do you think he achieved this goal?

Open Notebook

Journal Review

Homework

For the remainder of the unit, you will work on writing narratives: one from the point of view of your character, and one from your own point of view.

  • Before the next lesson, take some time to review your journal entries and the text of your community group entries, marking parts that you think would make good fodder for your future writing.