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English Language Arts
Material Type:
Lesson Plan
High School
  • Citation
  • Grade 12 ELA
  • Quotations
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    Examining Characters Behavior

    Examining Characters Behavior


    Who is free at the end of the play? In this lesson, students will share their responses to that question and their ideas about the ending of the play. Students will have class time to draft an essay about civilized behavior in The Tempest. For homework, students will complete an initial draft of their essay.


    • Read the lesson and student content.
    • Anticipate student difficulties and identify the differentiation options you will choose for working with your students.
    • Help students locate copies of the Independent Reading texts.

    The Epilogue

    • Allow 3 minutes for the writing.
    • Circulate through the room and listen to the conversations during the small group share. Note those students who have interesting ideas so that you can call on them during the Whole Group Share.
    • Facilitate a brief Whole Group Share about the play.
    • Some students may still have some questions; use this time to allow them to ask their questions and have them answered.
      • ELL: Monitor that all ELLs are actively engaged and are asking questions to clarify. Consider grouping those who need extra help and working with them in a small group or one-on-one.


    Complete a Quick Write in response to the following question.

    • In the epilogue, Prospero asks that he be granted freedom in the lines “But release me from my bands [bonds] / With the help of your good hands” and “As you from crimes would pardon’d be, / Let your indulgence set me free.” Who is free at the end of the play, and who is not?

    Open Notebook

    Discuss the ending of the play with your small group. Explain which of the characters is happy at the end and why.

    Then share with the whole class your ideas, or those from your group, about the ending.

    Ask any questions you have about the play.

    Who Is Civilized? Essay

    • Make sure that all students are writing. If you find some who are not, ask them to get started. Once they have a paragraph written, they can request a writing conference to ask specifically how to proceed.
      • SWD: Make sure that SWDs are clear about how to use the planning sheet to outline an essay. Offer support if needed.
    • Leave time for students to write a reflection about their work during the Closing.

    Work Time

    Take most of the rest of the period to work on your essay.

    • Use your planning sheet and your detailed outline to add to your draft essay about civilized behavior in The Tempest.

    Status Report

    • Encourage students to evaluate the ideas they heard today and to identify one that will best strengthen their essay.


    Send a status report to your teacher with responses to the following.

    • What are two things in the draft that work effectively?
    • To me, the most interesting idea in this paper is . . .
    • To me, the best-written part of the paper is . . .
    • What are some next steps with your writing?

    Open Notebook

    Who Is Civilized? Essay

    • Encourage students to cite specific lines and examples from Shakespeare’s play and from the article to support their points.
    • Remind students to choose and locate an Independent Reading text before Lesson 12.


    Continue working on your essay.

    • Read over what you have written for the essay about civilized behavior in The Tempest . Make sure you have support for your ideas in the lines you cite from the play.

    Complete a full first draft for Lesson 11.