- Is struggle integral to happiness?
- How can we make sense of our own world by examining the lives of others through literature?
- How are relationships important in defining who we are?
- What motivates human beings?
This unit asks students to think about the lives of characters, their desires, personal motivations, their conflicts, and their interactions with others. For ninth-graders entering high school, embarking on new experiences and self-discovery, it is important for them to think about the ways in which our values and ideas are challenged or changed by our interactions and conflicts with others so that they are better able to make sense of the world and better at making good decisions. By learning to use close reading strategies and analytical skills, students also examine the craft of writing and the ways in which an author uses characterization and other tools to advance the plot and convey big ideas and themes.
Critical Vocabulary: characterization, character motivation, character conflict, character loyalty, protagonist/antagonist, flat/round, static/dynamic