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ELA G6:M1

Myths: Not Just Long Ago

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In this module, students are involved in a deep study of mythology, its purposes, and elements. Students will read Rick Riordan’s The Lightning Thief (780L), a high-interest novel about a sixth-grade boy on a hero’s journey. Some students may be familiar with this popular fantasy book; in this module, students will read with a focus on the archetypal journey and close reading of the many mythical allusions. As they begin the novel, students also will read a complex informational text that explains the archetypal storyline of the hero’s journey which has been repeated in literature throughout the centuries. Through the close reading of literary and informational texts, students will learn multiple strategies for acquiring and using academic vocabulary. Students will also build routines and expectations of discussion as they work in small groups.  At the end of Unit 1, having read half of the novel, students will explain, with text-based evidence, how Percy is an archetypal hero.

In Unit 2, students will continue reading The Lightning Thief (more independently): in class, they will focus on the novel’s many allusions to classic myths; those allusions will serve as an entry point into a deeper study of Greek mythology. They also will continue to build their informational reading skills through the close reading of texts about the close reading of texts about the elements of myths. This will create a conceptual framework to support students’ reading of mythology. As a whole class, students will closely read several complex Greek myths. They then will work in small groups to build expertise on one of those myths.

In Unit 3, students shift their focus to narrative writing skills. This series of writing lessons will scaffold students to their final performance task in which they will apply their knowledge about the hero’s journey and the elements of mythology to create their own hero’s journey stories. This task centers on ELA standards RL.6.3, W.6.3, W.6.4, W.6.5, W.6.6, W.6.1c, L.6.2, and L.6.3.

Week-at-a-Glance

Each module is approximately 8 weeks of instruction broken into 3 units. The "week at a glance" chart in the curriculum map gives the big picture, breaking down the module into a detailed week-by-week view. It shows how the module unfolds, the focus of each week of instruction, and where the six assessments and the performance task occur.

Big Ideas & Guiding Questions

  • What is the hero’s journey?
  • What makes a myth?
  • Why do myths matter? 
  • The hero’s journey is an archetypal storyline used over the course of centuries. 
  • The hero’s journey helps us to better understand characters in literature and their response to challenges. 
  • All stories have universal elements and themes.

Content Connections

  • This module is designed to address English Language Arts standards. However, the module intentionally incorporates Social Studies content that may align to additional teaching during other parts of the day. These intentional connections are described below.

Texts

Texts to Buy

Texts that need to be procured. Please download the Trade Book List for procurement guidance.


Cover Text Quantity ISBNs
D'Aurailes Book of Greek Myths
by ingri and Edgar Parin D’Aulaire
Teacher copy only
ISBN: 978- 0440406945, 0440406943
The Lightning Thief
by Rick Riordan
one per student
ISBN: 978-0786838653, 0786838655

Texts included in the module

Texts that are included in the lesson materials.

Cover Text Quantity Publisher
The Fates
by E.M. Berens
Theseus and the Minotaur
by Nathaniel Hawthorne

Outcomes

CCS Standards: Reading—LiteratureLong-Term Learning Targets
  • RL.6.1. Cite textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.
  • I can cite text-based evidence to support an analysis of literary text.
  • RL.6.2. Determine a theme or central idea of a text and how it is conveyed through particular details; provide a summary of the text distinct from personal opinions or judgments.
  • I can determine a theme based on details in a literary text.
  • I can summarize a literary text using only information from the text.
  • RL.6.3. Describe how a particular story’s or drama’s plot unfolds in a series of episodes as well as how the characters respond or change as the plot moves toward a resolution.
  • I can describe how the plot evolves throughout a literary text.
  • I can describe how the characters change throughout a literary text. 
  • RL.6.4. Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the impact of a specific word choice on meaning and tone.
  • I can determine the meaning of literal and figurative language (metaphors and similes) in literary text.
  • I can analyze how an author’s word choice affects tone and meaning in a literary text.
  • RL.6.6. Explain how an author develops the point of view of the narrator or speaker in a text.
  • I can analyze how an author develops a narrator or speaker’s point of view. 
  • RL.6.10. By the end of the year, read and comprehend literature, including stories, dramas, and poems, in the grades 6–8 text complexity band proficiently, with scaffolding as needed at the high end of the range.
  • I can read grade-level literary texts proficiently and independently.
  • I can read above-grade literary texts with scaffolding and support. 
CCS Standards: Reading—Informational TextLong-Term Learning Targets
  • RI.6.1. Cite textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.
  • I can cite text-based evidence to support an analysis of informational text.
  • RI.6.2. Determine a central idea of a text and how it is conveyed through particular details; provide a summary of the text distinct from personal opinions or judgments.
  • I can determine the main idea of an informational text based on details in the text.
  • I can summarize an informational text using only information from the text.
  • RI.6.10. By the end of the year, read and comprehend literary nonfiction in the grades 6–8 text complexity band proficiently, with scaffolding as needed at the high end of the range.
  • I can read grade-level informational texts proficiently and independently.
  • I can read above-grade informational texts with scaffolding and support.
CCS Standards: WritingLong-Term Learning Targets
  • W.6.2. Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas, concepts, and information through the selection, organization, and analysis of relevant content.

a.  Introduce a topic; organize ideas, concepts, and information, using strategies such as definition, classification, comparison/contrast, and cause/effect; include formatting (e.g., headings), graphics (e.g., charts, tables), and multimedia when useful to aiding comprehension.

b.  Develop the topic with relevant facts, definitions, concrete details, quotations, or other information and examples.

c.  Use appropriate transitions to clarify the relationships among ideas and concepts.

d.  Use precise language and domain-specific vocabulary to inform about or explain the topic.

e.  Establish and maintain a formal style.

f.   Provide a concluding statement or section that follows from the information or explanation presented.

  • I can write informative/explanatory texts that convey ideas and concepts using relevant information that is carefully selected and organized.

a.  I can introduce the topic of my text.

b.  I can develop the topic with relevant facts, definitions, concrete details, and quotations.

c.  I can use transitions to clarify relationships among my ideas.

d.  I can use contextually specific language/vocabulary to inform or explain about a topic.

e.  I can establish and maintain a formal style in my writing.

f.   I can construct a concluding statement or section of an informative/explanatory text.

CCS Standards: WritingLong-Term Learning Targets
  • W.6.3. Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, relevant descriptive details, and well-structured event sequences.

a.  Engage and orient the reader by establishing a context and introducing a narrator and/or characters; organize an event
 sequence that unfolds naturally and logically.

b.  Use narrative techniques, such as dialogue, pacing, and description, to develop experiences, events, and/or characters.

c.  Use a variety of transition words, phrases, and clauses to convey sequence and signal shifts from one time frame or setting to another.

d.  Use precise words and phrases, relevant descriptive details, and
 sensory language to convey experiences and events.

e.  Provide a conclusion that follows from the narrated experiences
 or events.

  • I can write narrative texts about real or imagined experiences using relevant details and event sequences that make sense.

a.  I can establish a context for my narrative.

a.  I can introduce the narrator/characters of my narrative.

b.  I can organize events in a logical sequence.

b.  I can use dialogue and descriptions to show the actions, thoughts, and feelings of my characters.

c.  I can use transitional words, phrases, and clauses to show passage of time in a narrative text.

d.   I can use precise words and phrases and sensory language to convey experiences and events to my reader.

d.  I can use relevant descriptive details to convey experiences and events.

e.  I can write a conclusion to my narrative that makes sense to a reader.

• W.6.4. Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.

• I can produce clear and coherent writing that is appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.

• W.6.5. With some guidance and support from peers and adults, develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach.

• With support from peers and adults, I can use a writing process to produce clear and coherent writing.

• W.6.6. Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing as well as to interact and collaborate with others; demonstrate sufficient command of keyboarding skills to type a minimum of three pages in a single sitting.

• I can use technology to publish a piece of writing. • I can type at least three pages of writing in a single sitting.

CCS Standards: WritingLong-Term Learning Targets
  • W.6.9. Draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.

a.  Apply grade 6 Reading standards to literature (e.g., “Compare and contrast texts in different forms or genres [e.g., stories and poems; historical novels and fantasy stories] in terms of their approaches to similar themes and topics”).

b.  Apply grade 6 Reading standards to literary nonfiction (e.g., “Trace and evaluate the argument and specific claims in a text, distinguishing claims that are supported by reasons and evidence from claims that are not”).

  • I can use evidence from a variety of grade-appropriate texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.

• W.6.10. Write routinely over extended time frames (time for research, reflection, and revision) and shorter time frames (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of discipline-specific tasks, purposes, and audiences.

• I can adjust my writing practices for different time frames, tasks, purposes, and audiences.

• W.6.11c. Create poetry, stories, plays, and other literary forms (e.g. videos, art work).

• I can create poetry, stories, plays, and other literary forms (e.g. videos, art work).

CCS Standards: Speaking & ListeningLong-Term Learning Targets
  • SL.6.1. Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grade 6 topics, texts, and issues, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly.

a.  Come to discussions prepared, having read or studied required material; explicitly draw on that preparation by referring to evidence on the topic, text, or issue to probe and reflect on ideas under discussion.

b.  Follow rules for collegial discussions, set specific goals and deadlines, and define individual roles as needed.

c.  Pose and respond to specific questions with elaboration and detail by making comments that contribute to the topic, text, or issue under discussion.

d.  Review the key ideas expressed and demonstrate understanding of multiple perspectives through reflection and paraphrasing.

  • I can effectively engage in discussions with diverse partners about sixth-grade topics, texts, and issues.
  • I can express my own ideas clearly during discussions.
  • I can build on others’ ideas during discussions.

a.  I can prepare myself to participate in discussions.

b.  I can follow our class norms when I participate in a discussion.

c.  I can pose questions that help me clarify what is being discussed.

c.  I can pose questions that elaborate on the topic being discussed.

c.  I can respond to questions with elaboration and detail that connect with the topic being discussed.

d.   After a discussion, I can paraphrase what I understand about the topic being discussed.

CCS Standards: LanguageLong-Term Learning Targets
  • L.6.2. Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English capitalization, punctuation, and spelling when writing.

a.  Use punctuation (commas, parentheses, dashes) to set off nonrestrictive/parenthetical elements.*

b.  Spell correctly.

  • I can use correct capitalization, punctuation, and spelling to send a clear message to my reader.

a.  I can use punctuation (commas, parentheses, dashes) to set off nonrestrictive/parenthetical elements.

b.  I can spell correctly.

• L.6.3. Use knowledge of language and its conventions when writing, speaking, reading, or listening. a. Vary sentence patterns for meaning, reader/listener interest, and style.* b. Maintain consistency in style and tone.*

• I can use a variety of sentence structures to make my writing and speaking more interesting. • I can maintain consistency in style and tone when writing and speaking.

CCS Standards: LanguageLong-Term Learning Targets
  • L.6.4. Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown and multiple-meaning words and phrases based on grade 6 reading and content, choosing flexibly from a range of strategies.

a.  Use context (e.g., the overall meaning of a sentence or paragraph; a word’s position or function in a sentence) as a clue to the meaning of a word or phrase.

b.  Use common, grade-appropriate Greek or Latin affixes and roots as clues to the meaning of a word (e.g., audience, auditory, audible).

c.  Consult reference materials (e.g., dictionaries, glossaries, thesauruses), both print and digital, to find the pronunciation of a word or determine or clarify its precise meaning or its part of speech.

d.  Verify the preliminary determination of the meaning of a word or phrase (e.g., by checking the inferred meaning in context or in a dictionary).

  • I can use a variety of strategies to determine the meaning of unknown words and phrases.

a.  I can use context (e.g., the overall meaning of a sentence or paragraph; a word’s position or function in a sentence) to
 determine the meaning of a word or phrase.

b.  I can use common Greek and Latin affixes (prefixes) and roots as clues to help me determine the meaning of a word (e.g., audience, auditory, audible).

c.  I can use resource materials (glossaries, dictionaries, thesauruses) to help me determine or clarify the pronunciation, meaning of key words and phrases, and parts of speech.

d.  I can check the accuracy of my guess about the meaning of a word or phrase by using resource materials.

• L.6.6. Acquire and use accurately grade-appropriate general academic and domain-specific words and phrases; gather vocabulary knowledge when considering a word or phrase important to comprehension or expression.

• I can accurately use sixth-grade academic vocabulary to express my ideas. • I can use resources to build my vocabulary.

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