In this 8 eight-week module, students explore the experiences of people of Southern Sudan during and after the Second Sudanese Civil War. They build proficiency in using textual evidence to support ideas in their writing, both in shorter responses and in an extended essay. In Unit 1, students begin the novel A Long Walk to Water (720L) by Linda Sue Park. Students will read closely to practice citing evidence and drawing inferences from this compelling text as they begin to analyze and contrast the points of view of the two central characters, Salva and Nya. They also will read informational text to gather evidence on the perspectives of the Dinka and Nuer tribes of Southern Sudan. In Unit 2, students will read the remainder of the novel, focusing on the commonalities between Salva and Nya in relation to the novel’s theme: how individuals survive in challenging environments. (The main characters’ journeys are fraught with challenges imposed by the environment, including the lack of safe drinking water, threats posed by animals, and the constant scarcity of food. They are also challenged by political and social environments.). As in Unit 1, students will read this literature closely alongside complex informational texts (focusing on background on Sudan and factual accounts of the experiences of refugees from the Second Sudanese Civil War). Unit 2 culminates with a literary analysis essay about the theme of survival. Unit 3 brings students back to a deep exploration of character and point of view: students will combine their research about Sudan with specific quotes from A Long Walk to Water as they craft a two-voice poem, comparing and contrasting the points of view of the two main characters, Salva and Nya,. The two-voice poem gives students an opportunity to use both their analysis of the characters and theme in the novel and their research about the experiences of the people of Southern Sudan during the Second Sudanese Civil War.
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7th Grade Historical Literacy consists of two 43 minute class periods. Writing is one 43 minute block and reading is another. The teacher has picked themes based on social studies standards, and a read-aloud novel based on social studies serves as the mentor text for writing and reading skills. More social studies content is addressed in reading through teaching nonfiction reading skills and discussion.
Standards reflect CCSS ELA, Reading, and Social Studies Standards.
This unit is focused on the examination of a single topic, in this case, the Native Americans of the inland Northwest and conflict that arose when other non-native people started to settle in the northwest, and to specifically address the native populations that lived in the inland northwest. The materials were created to be one coherent arc of instruction focused on one topic. The module was designed to include teaching notes that signal the kind of planning and thinking such instruction requires: close reading with complex text, and specific instructional strategies or protocols are described that support students’ reading and writing with evidence are described in enough detail to make it very clear what is required of students and how to support students in doing this rigorous work. Materials include summative assessment of content and process, central texts, key resources, and protocols that support and facilitate student learning.